The longer-term consequences of SARS-CoV-2 infection are uncertain. Consecutive patients hospitalised with COVID-19 were prospectively recruited to this observational study (n=163). At 8–12 weeks postadmission, survivors were invited to a systematic clinical follow-up. Of 131 participants, 110 attended the follow-up clinic. Most (74%) had persistent symptoms (notably breathlessness and excessive fatigue) and limitations in reported physical ability. However, clinically significant abnormalities in chest radiograph, exercise tests, blood tests and spirometry were less frequent (35%), especially in patients not requiring supplementary oxygen during their acute infection (7%). Results suggest that a holistic approach focusing on rehabilitation and general well-being is paramount.
- respiratory infection
- viral infection
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DTA and FWH are joint first authors.
Twitter @gushamilton, @cathyams, @theotherdodd
Contributors DTA, SLB, NAM, JWD and FWH generated the research question and analysis plan. AM, AJM, MA, AN, CH, AB, EM, HA, JWD, NAM, DTA, FWH were involved in data collection and clinical appointments. SG, JH, SH and KTE were involved in data analysis. All authors were involved in the final manuscript preparation.
Funding The DISCOVER study was supported by donations to Southmead Hospital Charity (Registered Charity Number: 1055900).
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
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