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European Respiratory Journal Conference: European Respiratory Society International Congress, ERS ; 60(Supplement 66), 2022.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-2269547


Background: Dysfunctional breathing (DB) is increasingly recognized in long COVID. Associated symptoms, functional impact and quality of life (QoL) have not been systematically studied. Objective(s): We aimed to measure symptoms, functional impact and QoL in long COVID patients with new onset DB. Method(s): We included 55 patients (47.9 yr (14.4), female sex 72.7%) from our long COVID clinic with DB diagnosis based on compatible symptoms and abnormal breathing pattern during CPET. Questionnaires including mMRC scale, Nijmegen, short form 36 (SF-36), hospital anxiety and depression scale (HADS), post COVID functional scale (PFCS) and specific long COVID symptoms were administered. Result(s): Most patients had mild acute COVID-19 (admission rate 16.4%). Median time from SARS-CoV-2 diagnosis to CPET was 213 days (IQR 127), mean V'O2 was 90.4% (SD 20.2) pred. Hyperventilation, periodic sigh breathing and mixed types of DB were diagnosed in respectively 21.8%, 47.3%, 30.9% of patients. Mean (SD) Nijmegen score, PCFS and global HADS were 27.9 (11.9), 2.1 (0.8) and 16.6 (7.8) respectively. In addition to dyspnoea, most frequent symptoms on Nijmegen scale (cut-off >=3) were: faster or deeper breath (75.6%), unable to breath deeply (48.9%), sighs (53.5%), yawning (46.5%) and tight feeling in the chest (40.0%). SF36 scores were lower than population reference value. Conclusion(s): Long COVID patients living with DB have a high burden of symptom, functional impact and a low QoL despite normal exercise capacity.