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1.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(9)2022 05 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1847326

ABSTRACT

Hospital workers have increased exposure risk of healthcare-associated infections due to the frontline nature of their work. Olfactory dysfunction is highly prevalent. The objectives for this investigation are to study the prevalence of long-lasting olfactory dysfunction associated with COVID-19 infection in hospital workers during the first pandemic wave, to identify clinical characteristics and associated symptomatology, and to analyze how many patients with COVID-19 infection had developed olfactory dysfunction during infection and maintained a reduced olfactory function for approximately 10 weeks after diagnosis. Between June and July of 2020, a cross-sectional study was carried out at the Hospital Central de la Cruz Roja San José and Santa Adela in Madrid, Spain. One hundred sixty-four participants were included, of which 110 were patient-facing healthcare staff and 54 were non-patient-facing healthcare staff. Participants were split into three groups, according to COVID-19 diagnosis and presence of COVID-19 related olfactory symptomatology. Participants were asked to complete a structured online questionnaire along with Sniffin' Stick Olfactory Test measurements. In this study, 88 participants were confirmed for COVID-19 infection, 59 of those participants also reported olfactory symptomatology. The prevalence of COVID-19 infection was 11.35%, and the prevalence for olfactory dysfunction was 67.05%. Olfactory dysfunction associated with COVID-19 infection leads to long-lasting olfactory loss. Objective assessment with Sniffin' Stick Olfactory Test points to odor identification as the most affected process. Lemon, liquorice, solvent, and rose are the odors that are worst recognized. Mint, banana, solvent, garlic, coffee, and pineapple, although they are identified, are perceived with less intensity. The findings of this study confirmed a high prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 infection among the hospital workers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19 Testing , Cross-Sectional Studies , Hospitals , Humans , Odorants , Olfaction Disorders/diagnosis , Olfaction Disorders/epidemiology , Olfaction Disorders/etiology , Prevalence , SARS-CoV-2 , Smell , Solvents
2.
BMJ Glob Health ; 7(5)2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1846372

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To estimate scent dogs' diagnostic accuracy in identification of people infected with SARS-CoV-2 in comparison with reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). We conducted a randomised triple-blinded validation trial, and a real-life study at the Helsinki-Vantaa International Airport, Finland. METHODS: Four dogs were trained to detect COVID-19 using skin swabs from individuals tested for SARS-CoV-2 by RT-PCR. Our controlled triple-blinded validation study comprised four identical sets of 420 parallel samples (from 114 individuals tested positive and 306 negative by RT-PCR), randomly presented to each dog over seven trial sessions. In a real-life setting the dogs screened skin swabs from 303 incoming passengers all concomitantly examined by nasal swab SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR. Our main outcomes were variables of diagnostic accuracy (sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value) for scent dog identification in comparison with RT-PCR. RESULTS: Our validation experiments had an overall accuracy of 92% (95% CI 90% to 93%), a sensitivity of 92% (95% CI 89% to 94%) and a specificity of 91% (95% CI 89% to 93%) compared with RT-PCR. For our dogs, trained using the wild-type virus, performance was less accurate for the alpha variant (89% for confirmed wild-type vs 36% for alpha variant, OR 14.0, 95% CI 4.5 to 43.4). In the real-life setting, scent detection and RT-PCR matched 98.7% of the negative swabs. Scant airport prevalence (0.47%) did not allow sensitivity testing; our only SARS-CoV-2 positive swab was not identified (alpha variant). However, ad hoc analysis including predefined positive spike samples showed a total accuracy of 98% (95% CI 97% to 99%). CONCLUSIONS: This large randomised controlled triple-blinded validation study with a precalculated sample size conducted at an international airport showed that trained scent dogs screen airport passenger samples with high accuracy. One of our findings highlights the importance of continuous retraining as new variants emerge. Using scent dogs may present a valuable approach for high-throughput, rapid screening of large numbers of people.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Airports , Animals , COVID-19/diagnosis , Dogs , Humans , Odorants
3.
Biol Open ; 11(4)2022 04 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1833451

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has illustrated the need for the development of fast and reliable testing methods for novel, zoonotic, viral diseases in both humans and animals. Pathologies lead to detectable changes in the volatile organic compound (VOC) profile of animals, which can be monitored, thus allowing the development of a rapid VOC-based test. In the current study, we successfully trained honeybees (Apis mellifera) to identify SARS-CoV-2 infected minks (Neovison vison) thanks to Pavlovian conditioning protocols. The bees can be quickly conditioned to respond specifically to infected mink's odours and could therefore be part of a wider SARS-CoV-2 diagnostic system. We tested two different training protocols to evaluate their performance in terms of learning rate, accuracy and memory retention. We designed a non-invasive rapid test in which multiple bees are tested in parallel on the same samples. This provided reliable results regarding a subject's health status. Using the data from the training experiments, we simulated a diagnostic evaluation trial to predict the potential efficacy of our diagnostic test, which yielded a diagnostic sensitivity of 92% and specificity of 86%. We suggest that a honeybee-based diagnostics can offer a reliable and rapid test that provides a readily available, low-input addition to the currently available testing methods. A honeybee-based diagnostic test might be particularly relevant for remote and developing communities that lack the resources and infrastructure required for mainstream testing methods.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Bees , COVID-19/diagnosis , Humans , Learning , Odorants , Pandemics
4.
Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol ; 158: 111173, 2022 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1821288

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To develop an olfactory test that can be conducted by an untrained person using common household items and to introduce a German version of the Chemosensory Pleasure Scale for Children (CPS-C(de)). METHODOLOGY: This olfactory home test was developed in phases including evaluation of odors for suitability in a home setting. Parents of 50 children (ages 6-17) were then equipped with instruction manuals and participants were tested twice in a cross-over design. A validated pediatric olfactory test (the Universal Sniff test (U-Sniff)) served as the comparative gold standard. Additionally, a Chinese-English-German "back-and-forth" translation was conducted to establish the CPS-C(de) and was tested for empirical validity. RESULTS: Fourteen items were tested for feasibility, and all were identified on a sufficient rate (≥66%, mean ±â€¯SD of 93.3% ±â€¯9.5%). Bland Altman Plot analysis between home testing and the U-Sniff test was nearly identical (bias = 0.04). CPS-C(de) showed similar results to the original Chinese version and a moderate correlation was found between CPS-C(de) scores and Body Mass Index of children (r30 = -0.527, p = 0.003). CONCLUSIONS: Remote olfactory testing in children using household items is feasible. The CPS-C(de) may be of value for future olfactory studies.


Subject(s)
Olfaction Disorders , Adolescent , Child , Cross-Over Studies , Humans , Odorants , Olfaction Disorders/diagnosis , Sensory Thresholds , Smell
5.
Am J Otolaryngol ; 43(2): 103299, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1739513

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the efficacy and safety of intranasal theophylline saline irrigation on olfactory recovery in patients with post-viral olfactory dysfunction (PVOD). METHODS: Between May 2019 and April 2020, we conducted a double-blinded, placebo-controlled randomized clinical trial of adults with 6-36 months of PVOD. Patients were randomized to nasal theophylline saline irrigation or placebo saline irrigation twice a day for 6 weeks. The primary outcome was the Global Rating of Smell Change. Secondary outcomes were changes in the University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test (UPSIT) and Questionnaire of Olfactory Disorders-Negative Statements (QOD-NS). RESULTS: Twenty-two patients (n = 12, theophylline; n = 10, placebo) completed the study. Slightly more patients in the theophylline group (33%) reported improved smell compared to the placebo group (30%, difference 3.3%, 95% CI -35.6% to 42.3%). The median differences in pre- and post-treatment UPSIT and QOD-NS change between the two groups were 1 (95% CI -3 to 5) and -10 (95% CI -15 to -4), respectively in favor of theophylline. Three patients receiving theophylline and 2 receiving placebo had clinically meaningful improvements on the UPSIT (difference 5%, 95% CI -30% to 40%). There were no adverse events, and serum theophylline levels were undetectable in 10/10 patients. CONCLUSIONS: While safe, there were no clinically meaningful differences in olfactory change between the two groups except for olfaction-related quality of life, which was better with theophylline. The imprecise estimates suggest future trials will need substantially larger sample sizes or treatment modifications, such as increasing the theophylline dose, to observe larger treatment effects.


Subject(s)
Olfaction Disorders , Smell , Adult , Humans , Odorants , Olfaction Disorders/drug therapy , Olfaction Disorders/etiology , Quality of Life , Theophylline/therapeutic use
6.
J Public Health (Oxf) ; 44(1): e36-e41, 2022 03 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1735635

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Early screening for COVID-19 is needed to limit the spread of the virus. The aim of this study is to test if the sniffer dogs can be successfully trained to identify subjects with COVID-19 for 'proof of concept' and 'non-inferiority' against PCR. We are calling this method, Dognosis (DN). METHODS: Four hundred and fifty-nine subjects were included, 256 (Group 'P') were known cases of COVID-19 (PCR positive, some with and some without symptoms) and 203 (Group 'C') were PCR negative and asymptomatic (control). Samples were obtained from the axillary sweat of each subject in a masked fashion. Two dogs trained to detect specific Volatile Organic Compounds for COVID-19 detection were used to test each sample. RESULTS: [DN] turned out positive (+) in all the cases that were PCR positive (100% sensitivity). On the other hand, [DN] turned positive (+) in an average of 12.5 cases (6.2%) that were initially PCR negative (apparent specificity of 93.8%). When the PCR was repeated, true specificity was 97.2%. These parameters varied in subgroups from 100% sensitivity and 99% specificity in symptomatic patients to 100% sensitivity and 93% specificity in asymptomatic patients. CONCLUSION: DN method shows high sensitivity and specificity in screening COVID-19 patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Animals , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Dogs , Humans , Odorants , SARS-CoV-2 , Sensitivity and Specificity , Sweat , Working Dogs
7.
Laryngoscope ; 132(7): 1433-1438, 2022 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1729166

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infection often causes olfactory dysfunction and parosmia may occur in some patients with olfactory dysfunction. In this study, we retrospectively investigated the effectiveness of modified olfactory training (MOT) for the treatment of COVID-19-induced parosmia. STUDY DESIGN: This study presents results of MOT performed with 12 odors for 36 weeks in patients with olfactory dysfunction following COVID-19 infection. A total of 75 participants were included in the study (mean age 33 years, range 16-60 years). METHODS: The patients were separated into two groups: 1) Treatment group consisted of parosmia patients who received MOT with three sets of four different odors sequentially. 2) Control group consisted of parosmia patients who did not perform any olfactory training. Both groups were matched for age and sex distribution of participants. TDI scores were compared at the time of application and at the end of the 9th month by the Sniffin' Sticks Test. The results of the 0th and 9th months were recorded by applying the parosmia assessment scale to both groups. The results were analyzed statistically, and p < 0.05 was considered significant. RESULTS: When the treatment group and the control group were compared, a significant improvement was observed in both groups at the third, sixth, and ninth month, however the improvement in the treatment group was found to be better than in the control group (P < .001). Extending the treatment from 6 to 9 months in the treatment group was found to be effective in mitigating parosmia complaints and improving discrimination scores (P < .001). CONCLUSION: This study has shown that modified olfactory training is effective in the treatment of parosmia following COVID-19 infection. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 3 Laryngoscope, 132:1433-1438, 2022.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , Adolescent , Adult , Humans , Middle Aged , Odorants , Olfaction Disorders/etiology , Olfaction Disorders/therapy , Retrospective Studies , Smell , Young Adult
8.
Rhinology ; 60(2): 139-144, 2022 Apr 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1675024

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: This study aimed to examine whether omega-3 supplementation would support olfactory recovery among postviral olfactory dysfunction patients. METHODOLOGY: Patients with postviral olfactory dysfunction were included in this non-blinded, prospective pilot study. Structured medical history was taken from the patients, including the following: age, sex, history of COVID-19 infection, and duration of symptoms. Patients were randomly assigned to receive olfactory training only (control group) versus olfactory training with omega-3 supplementation (treatment group). All patients exposed themselves twice a day to four odours (phenyl ethyl alcohol [rose], eucalyptol [eucalyptus], citronellal [lemon], and eugenol [cloves]). Olfactory function was measured before and after training using 'Sniffin' Sticks', comprised of tests for odour threshold, discrimination, and identification. The average interval between olfactory tests was 3 months. RESULTS: Fifty-eight patients were included in the study, 25 men and 33 women. Generally, an improvement in olfactory scores was observed. Compared to the control group, the improvement in odour thresholds was more pronounced in the omega-3 group. Age, sex, and duration of symptoms had no effect on olfactory scores among both control and treatment groups. CONCLUSION: Overall, the present results indicate that omega-3 supplementation may be an option for adjunct therapy with olfactory training in patients with postviral olfactory dysfunction.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , Dietary Supplements , Female , Humans , Male , Odorants , Olfaction Disorders/diagnosis , Olfaction Disorders/etiology , Olfaction Disorders/therapy , Pilot Projects , Prospective Studies , Sensory Thresholds , Smell
9.
J Med Eng Technol ; 46(3): 198-208, 2022 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1671816

ABSTRACT

In times of the COVID-19 pandemic, wearing face masks is strongly recommended as a public health measure to stop the spread of the Sars Coronavirus. However, there are still people who ignore using this effective protective tool due to the lack of comfortable face masks on the market. Therefore, in the current study, we assessed commercially available face masks namely N95 masks, surgical masks, and cloth masks in order to find out their weakness. In addition, the identification needs of people from a face mask were collected by an online questionnaire. According to the information obtained; we achieved key factors required to design a new type of face mask using the Computer-Aided Design (CAD) and the final design was printed. Moreover, the long-term use of herbs in Iranian Traditional Medicine persuaded us to add a humidifier containing aromatic plants essential oils such as Eucalyptus globules Labill. and Rosa damascene Mill. with scientifically proven health benefits such as pain reliever, relaxing properties and antimicrobial activities. We are expected that these aromas would be an effective way to eliminate the problems of individuals suffering from air pollutants, respiratory disorders, and COVID which leads to encouraging more people to use face masks during pandemics or air pollution.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , COVID-19/prevention & control , Humans , Iran , Masks , Odorants , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2
10.
Am J Otolaryngol ; 43(2): 103376, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1654011

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: To analyze the utility of a 5-item odorant test (U-Smell-It™) in determining COVID-19 status in COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-positive and -negative participants. METHODS: Symptoms, COVID-19 status, and 5-item odorant test results were collected from general population COVID-19 testing in Louisiana (n = 1042), and routine COVID-19 screening of healthcare workers in a nursing home in Florida (n = 278) (ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT04431908). RESULTS: In the general population COVID-19 testing site, a cutoff point of ≤2 (0, 1, or 2 correct answers out of 5) achieved sensitivity of 40.0% (95% CI: 26.4%-54.8%) and specificity of 89.2% (95% CI: 87.1%-91.1%) in detecting COVID-19 infection. Within this population, analysis of individuals with no self-reported loss of smell/taste and runny/stuffy nose resulted in sensitivity of 38.1% (95% CI: 18.1%-61.6%) and specificity of 92.3% (95% CI: 89.1%-93.4%), while analysis of individuals with self-reported loss of smell/taste and/or runny/stuffy nose resulted in sensitivity of 41.4% (95% CI: 23.5%-61.1%) and specificity of 82.4% (95% CI: 77.7%-86.5%). CONCLUSIONS: The quick turnaround time, low cost, reduced resource requirement, and ease of administering odorant tests provide many advantages as an indicator sign to help flag a molecular diagnostic COVID-19 test with relatively high specificity. Our results suggest that this odorant testing for olfactory dysfunction may be a viable option in pre-screening COVID-19 infection. This tool has the potential to allow for continued monitoring and surveillance, while helping mitigate surges of COVID-19 variants. Further investigation is warranted to observe the extent to which odorant testing might be applied in a serial testing scenario.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19 Testing , Humans , Odorants , Olfaction Disorders/diagnosis , Olfaction Disorders/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2
11.
Rev Infirm ; 70(276): 30-31, 2021 Dec.
Article in French | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1565637

ABSTRACT

Sudden loss of smell is a very common symptom that can be observed in two-thirds of patients with Covid-19, and may be the only symptom of this disease. A study has demonstrated that 80% of infected patients have sudden loss of smell without nasal obstruction. This suggests that anomalies of the olfactory epithelium are a key element of pathogenesis and local involvement. Management of odor disorders related to Covid-19 is still being debated. Share of experience of the ear, nose and throat team at the University Hospital of Nancy (54).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , Odorants , Patient Care , SARS-CoV-2 , Smell
12.
Sci Rep ; 10(1): 14856, 2020 09 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1493156

ABSTRACT

The problem of indoor odors can greatly affect a room's occupants. To identify odorants and comprehensively evaluate emissions from wooden materials, emissions and odors from Choerospondias axillaris (Roxb.) Burtt et Hill with different moisture content percentages and lacquer treatments were investigated in this study. Thermal desorption-gas chromatography-mass spectroscopy/olfactometry was used to analyze the release characteristics. In total, 11 key odor-active compounds were identified as moisture content gradually decreased, concentrating between 15 and 33 min. Total volatile organic compounds, total very volatile organic compounds, and total odor intensity decreased as moisture content decreased. In addition, 35 odor-active compounds, including aromatics, alkenes, aldehydes, esters, and alcohols, were identified in the odor control list. Polyurethane (PU), ultraviolet (UV), and waterborne coatings had a good inhibitory effect on eight odor characteristics, but some scents arose after lacquer treatment. For equilibrium moisture content, the major characteristics of Choerospondias axillaris were fragrant (9.4) and mint-like (3.0) compared with the fragrant (8.2), fruity (7.8), and pleasant (5.8) characteristics of PU coating; the flowery (5.9), fragrant (5.0), glue-like (4.3), and pineapple-like (4.3) characteristics of UV coating; and the antiseptic solution (3.6), fragrant (2.9), cigarette-like (2.8), and fruity (2.5) characteristics of waterborne coating. Based on multicomponent evaluation, a Choerospondias axillaris board with waterborne coating was suggested for use indoors.


Subject(s)
Anacardiaceae/chemistry , Odorants/analysis , Volatile Organic Compounds/analysis , Wood/chemistry , China , Humans , Lacquer , Olfactory Perception
13.
Dev Psychobiol ; 63(7): e22201, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1482123

ABSTRACT

Fetuses are able to process olfactory stimuli present in the womb and continue to show a preference for these odors for months after birth. Despite the accumulated knowledge about their early ability to perceive odors, there is a lack of validated scales for odor response in newborns. The evaluation of reactions of the olfactory system to environmental stimuli in infants has been defined by methodological theoretical approaches of experimental and clinical assessment tools. These approaches are mainly based on psychophysical approaches and predominantly use behavioral and physiological measures. Examples can be found in studies describing early abilities of newborn babies for behaviors or heart rate variability showing memory of maternal food preferences or mother's breast milk. This systematic review aimed to determine whether validated odor assessment tools can be feasibly used in studies. Particularly in light of the current COVID-19 pandemic and evidence of associated olfactory impairment resulting from SARS-COV-2 infection, the study is also motivated by the need for tools to assess olfactory function in neonates.


Subject(s)
Infant, Newborn/physiology , Smell , Anosmia/diagnosis , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/physiopathology , Humans , Infant, Newborn, Diseases/diagnosis , Odorants , Smell/physiology
14.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 18(19)2021 Sep 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1444184

ABSTRACT

Olfactory dysfunction (OD) is a common manifestation of COVID-19 and may be useful for screening. Survey-based olfactory evaluation tends to underestimate the prevalence of OD, while psychophysical olfactory testing during a pandemic has the disadvantage of being time consuming, expensive, and requiring standardized laboratory settings. We aimed to develop a quick, simple, affordable, and reliable test to objectively assess the prevalence and diagnostic accuracy of OD in COVID-19. The olfactory function of 64 COVID-19 inpatients and 34 controls was evaluated using a questionnaire and a simple disposable odor identification test (SDOIT) developed for this study. Four SDOIT models were assessed: 10-SDOIT, 9-SDOIT, 8-SDOIT, and 4-SDOIT, with 10, 9, 8 and 4 samples, respectively. We found a high frequency of self-reported OD in COVID-19 patients, with 32.8% and 42.2% reporting current and recent OD, respectively. Different SDOIT models revealed smell impairment in 54.7-64.1% of COVID-19 patients. The combination of either 10-SDOIT results and self-reported OD, or 8-SDOIT results and self-reported OD, were the best predictors of COVID-19, both with an AUC value of 0.87 (0.85 and 0.86 for the age-matched subjects). OD is a common symptom of COVID-19. A combination of self-reported smell deterioration and OD psychophysically evaluated using SDOIT appears to be a good predictor of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , Humans , Odorants , Olfaction Disorders/diagnosis , Olfaction Disorders/epidemiology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Smell
15.
PLoS One ; 16(9): e0257474, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1443840

ABSTRACT

Timely and accurate diagnostics are essential to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, but no test satisfies both conditions. Dogs can scent-identify the unique odors of volatile organic compounds generated during infection by interrogating specimens or, ideally, the body of a patient. After training 6 dogs to detect SARS-CoV-2 by scent in human respiratory secretions (in vitro diagnosis), we retrained 5 of them to search and find the infection by scenting the patient directly (in vivo screening). Then, efficacy trials were designed to compare the diagnostic performance of the dogs against that of the rRT-PCR in 848 human subjects: 269 hospitalized patients (COVID-19 prevalence 30.1%), 259 hospital staff (prevalence 2.7%), and 320 government employees (prevalence 1.25%). The limit of detection in vitro was lower than 10-12 copies ssRNA/mL. During in vivo efficacy experiments, our 5 dogs detected 92 COVID-19 positive patients among the 848 study subjects. The alert (lying down) was immediate, with 95.2% accuracy and high sensitivity (95.9%; 95% C.I. 93.6-97.4), specificity (95.1%; 94.4-95.8), positive predictive value (69.7%; 65.9-73.2), and negative predictive value (99.5%; 99.2-99.7) in relation to rRT-PCR. Seventy-five days after finishing in vivo efficacy experiments, a real-life study (in vivo effectiveness) was executed among the riders of the Metro System of Medellin, deploying the human-canine teams without previous training or announcement. Three dogs were used to examine the scent of 550 volunteers who agreed to participate, both in test with canines and in rRT-PCR testing. Negative predictive value remained at 99.0% (95% C.I. 98.3-99.4), but positive predictive value dropped to 28.2% (95% C.I. 21.1-36.7). Canine scent-detection in vivo is a highly accurate screening test for COVID-19, and it detects more than 99% of infected individuals independent of key variables, such as disease prevalence, time post-exposure, or presence of symptoms. Additional training is required to teach the dogs to ignore odoriferous contamination under real-life conditions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Odorants/analysis , Pheromones/analysis , Animals , Dogs , Female , Humans , Male , Mass Screening , Predictive Value of Tests , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Sensitivity and Specificity , Volatile Organic Compounds , Working Dogs
16.
Eur J Neurosci ; 54(6): 6256-6266, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1429618

ABSTRACT

Sudden olfactory loss in the absence of concurrent nasal congestion is now a well-recognized symptom of COVID-19. We examined olfaction using standardized objective tests of odour detection, identification and hedonics collected from asymptomatic university students before and as SARS-CoV-2 emerged locally. Olfactory performance of students who were tested when the virus is known to be endemic (n = 22) was compared to students tested in the month prior to viral circulation (n = 25), a normative sample assessed during the previous 4 years (n = 272) and those tested in prior years during the same time period. Analyses showed significantly reduced odour detection for the virus exposed cohort compared to students tested before (t = 2.60; P = .01; d = 0.77; CI 0.17, 1.36) and to the normative sample (D = 0.38; P = .005). Odour identification scores were similar, but the exposed cohort rated odours as less unpleasant (P < .001, CLES = 0.77). Hyposmia increased 4.4-fold for students tested 2 weeks before school closure (N = 22) and increased 13.6-fold for students tested in the final week (N = 11). While the unavailability of COVID-19 testing is a limitation, this naturalistic study demonstrates week-by-week increase in hyposmia in asymptomatic students as a virus was circulating on campus, consistent with increasing airborne viral loads. The specific hedonic deficit in unpleasantness appraisal suggests a deficit in the TAAR olfactory receptor class, which conveys the social salience of odours. Assessment of odour detection and hedonic ratings may aid in early detection of SARS-CoV-2 exposure in asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic persons.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19 Testing , Humans , Odorants , Smell , Students , Universities
17.
BMC Infect Dis ; 21(1): 707, 2021 Jul 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1388739

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The main strategy to contain the current SARS-CoV-2 pandemic remains to implement a comprehensive testing, tracing and quarantining strategy until vaccination of the population is adequate. Scent dogs could support current testing strategies. METHODS: Ten dogs were trained for 8 days to detect SARS-CoV-2 infections in beta-propiolactone inactivated saliva samples. The subsequent cognitive transfer performance for the recognition of non-inactivated samples were tested on three different body fluids (saliva, urine, and sweat) in a randomised, double-blind controlled study. RESULTS: Dogs were tested on a total of 5242 randomised sample presentations. Dogs detected non-inactivated saliva samples with a diagnostic sensitivity of 84% (95% CI: 62.5-94.44%) and specificity of 95% (95% CI: 93.4-96%). In a subsequent experiment to compare the scent recognition between the three non-inactivated body fluids, diagnostic sensitivity and specificity were 95% (95% CI: 66.67-100%) and 98% (95% CI: 94.87-100%) for urine, 91% (95% CI: 71.43-100%) and 94% (95% CI: 90.91-97.78%) for sweat, 82% (95% CI: 64.29-95.24%), and 96% (95% CI: 94.95-98.9%) for saliva respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The scent cognitive transfer performance between inactivated and non-inactivated samples as well as between different sample materials indicates that global, specific SARS-CoV-2-associated volatile compounds are released across different body secretions, independently from the patient's symptoms. All tested body fluids appear to be similarly suited for reliable detection of SARS-CoV-2 infected individuals.


Subject(s)
Body Fluids , COVID-19 , Animals , Dogs , Humans , Odorants , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Saliva
18.
Arch Pharm Res ; 44(7): 725-740, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1321878

ABSTRACT

Anecdotal evidence suggests that the severity of coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is likely to be distinguished by variations in loss of smell (LOS). Thus, we conducted a meta-analysis of 45 articles that include a total of 42,120 COVID-19 patients from 17 different countries to demonstrate that severely ill or hospitalized COVID-19 patients have a lesser chance of experiencing LOS than non-severely ill or non-hospitalized COVID-19 patients (odds ratio = 0.527 [95% CI 0.373-0.744; p < 0.001] and 0.283 [95% CI 0.173-0.462; p < 0.001], respectively). We also proposed a possible mechanism underlying the association of COVID-19 severity with anosmia, which may explain why patients without sense of smell develop severe COVID-19. Variations in LOS according to the severity of COVID-19 is a global phenomenon, with few exceptions. Since severely ill patients have a lower rate of anosmia, patients without anosmia should be monitored more closely in the early stages of COVID-19, for early diagnosis of severity of illness. An understanding of how the severity of COVID-19 infection and LOS are associated has profound implications for the clinical management and mitigation strategies for the disease.


Subject(s)
Anosmia/etiology , COVID-19/complications , Odorants , Olfactory Perception , Smell , Anosmia/diagnosis , Anosmia/physiopathology , Anosmia/psychology , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/therapy , Early Diagnosis , Female , Hospitalization , Humans , Male , Predictive Value of Tests , Prognosis , Risk Assessment , Risk Factors , Severity of Illness Index
19.
Rhinology ; 59(4): 402-404, 2021 Aug 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1270179

ABSTRACT

To the Editor: Monitoring of olfactory function and diagnosis of olfactory disorders using the pen-based "Sniffin' Sticks test" is problematic during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic due to hygienic concerns. The aim of this study was to find out whether the results of olfactory testing obtained by presenting odours on a single-use filter paper is identical to performing the test by presenting the odour pens according to the manufacturer's manual.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , Humans , Odorants , SARS-CoV-2 , Sensory Thresholds , Smell
20.
Commun Biol ; 4(1): 686, 2021 06 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1260959

ABSTRACT

In January 2020, the coronavirus disease was declared, by the World Health Organization as a global public health emergency. Recommendations from the WHO COVID Emergency Committee continue to support strengthening COVID surveillance systems, including timely access to effective diagnostics. Questions were raised about the validity of considering the RT-PCR as the gold standard in COVID-19 diagnosis. It has been suggested that a variety of methods should be used to evaluate advocated tests. Dogs had been successfully trained and employed to detect diseases in humans. Here we show that upon training explosives detection dogs on sniffing COVID-19 odor in patients' sweat, those dogs were able to successfully screen out 3249 individuals who tested negative for the SARS-CoV-2, from a cohort of 3290 individuals. Additionally, using Bayesian analysis, the sensitivity of the K9 test was found to be superior to the RT-PCR test performed on nasal swabs from a cohort of 3134 persons. Given its high sensitivity, short turn-around-time, low cost, less invasiveness, and ease of application, the detection dogs test lends itself as a better alternative to the RT-PCR in screening for SARS-CoV-2 in asymptomatic individuals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Odorants , Working Dogs , Adult , Aged , Animals , Bayes Theorem , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/economics , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19 Testing/economics , Dogs , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Odorants/analysis , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Sensitivity and Specificity , Smell , Young Adult
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