Overweight and obesity as risk factors for COVID-19-associated hospitalisations and death: systematic review and meta-analysis.
BMJ nutrition, prevention & health. 2022;5(1):10-18
Plain language summary
A novel coronavirus named SARS-CoV-2, causing COVID-19, emerged in late 2019. The prognosis of COVID-19 has been consistently reported to worsen with older age, male sex and comorbidities. The aim of this study was to quantify the association between overweight or obesity and COVID-19-related hospitalisations and death, and to assess the magnitude of the association and the potential dose–response relationships. This study is a systematic review and meta-analysis of 208 studies. A total of 3 550 977 participants from over 32 countries were included in this study. Results indicate that being overweight increases the risk of COVID-19-related hospitalisations but not death while obesity and extreme obesity increase the risk of both COVID-19-related hospitalisations and death. In addition, there was a linear dose–response association between obesity categories and COVID-19 outcomes. However, the strength of the association has weakened over time following the pattern of the first wave of COVID-19. Authors conclude that their findings suggest the importance of increased vigilance towards people with excess adiposity. Some preventative measures for this vulnerable group include prompt access to COVID-19 testing and healthcare, as well as prioritisation for COVID-19 vaccination.
Objective: To quantify the current weight of evidence of the association between overweight and obesity as risk factors for COVID-19-related hospitalisations (including hospital admission, intensive care unit admission, invasive mechanical ventilation) and death, and to assess the magnitude of the association and the potential dose-response relationships. Design: PubMed, Embase, Cochrane, Web of Sciences, WHO COVID-19 database and Google Scholar were used to identify articles published up to 20 July 2021. Peer-reviewed studies reporting adjusted estimates of the association between overweight or obesity and COVID-19 outcomes were included. Three authors reviewed the articles and agreed. The quality of eligible studies was assessed using the Newcastle-Ottawa Quality Assessment Scale. Random-effects meta-analysis was used to estimate the combined effects. Results: A total of 208 studies with 3 550 997 participants from over 32 countries were included in this meta-analysis. Being overweight was associated with an increased risk of COVID-19-related hospitalisations (OR 1.19, 95% CI 1.12 to 1.28, n=21 studies), but not death (OR 1.02, 95% CI 0.92 to 1.13, n=21). However, patients with obesity were at increased risk of both COVID-19-related hospitalisations (OR 1.72, 95% CI 1.62 to 1.84, n=58) and death (OR 1.25, 95% CI 1.19 to 1.32, n=77). Similarly, patients with extreme obesity were at increased risk of COVID-19-related hospitalisations (OR 2.53, 95% CI 1.67 to 3.84, n=12) and death (OR 2.06, 95% CI 1.76 to 3.00, n=19). There was a linear dose-response relationship between these obesity categories and COVID-19 outcomes, but the strength of the association has decreased over time. Conclusion: Being overweight increases the risk of COVID-19-related hospitalisations but not death, while obesity and extreme obesity increase the risk of both COVID-19-related hospitalisations and death. These findings suggest that prompt access to COVID-19 care, prioritisation for COVID-19 vaccination and other preventive measures are warranted for this vulnerable group.
Case report and systematic review suggest that children may experience similar long-term effects to adults after clinical COVID-19.
Acta paediatrica (Oslo, Norway : 1992). 2021;110(3):914-921
Plain language summary
The long-term effects of COVID-19 is becoming increasingly documented in adults. Symptoms such as fatigue, headache and depression have all been reported, however data on the possible long-term effects of COVID-19 in children is scarce. The aim of this systematic review and case report was to describe the long-term effects of COVID-19 in five children and support this with other reports in the literature. The results showed that of the five case reports of long COVID, four were girls aged 9-15 years. All subjects reported symptoms lasting between 6-8 months. Most common symptoms were fatigue, difficulty breathing and heart issues. The systematic literature review did not find any publications which documented long COVID in children. It was concluded that children may experience long COVID symptoms and girls may be more susceptible. This study could be used by healthcare professionals to understand that children may also be affected by long COVID and that patients should be monitored for symptoms for at least 6-8 months.
AIM: Persistent symptoms in adults after COVID-19 are emerging and the term long COVID is increasingly appearing in the literature. However, paediatric data are scarce. METHODS This paper contains a case report of five Swedish children and the long-term symptoms reported by their parents. It also includes a systematic literature review of the MEDLINE, EMBASE and Web of Science databases and the medRxiv/bioRxiv pre-print servers up to 2 November 2020. RESULTS The five children with potential long COVID had a median age of 12 years (range 9-15) and four were girls. They had symptoms for 6-8 months after their clinical diagnoses of COVID-19. None were hospitalised at diagnosis, but one was later admitted for peri-myocarditis. All five children had fatigue, dyspnoea, heart palpitations or chest pain, and four had headaches, difficulties concentrating, muscle weakness, dizziness and sore throats. Some had improved after 6-8 months, but they all suffered from fatigue and none had fully returned to school. The systematic review identified 179 publications and 19 of these were deemed relevant and read in detail. None contained any information on long COVID in children. CONCLUSION Children may experience similar long COVID symptoms to adults and females may be more affected.
Prevalence and outcomes of malnutrition among hospitalized COVID-19 patients: A systematic review and meta-analysis.
Clinical nutrition ESPEN. 2021;43:174-183
Plain language summary
Malnutrition during Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a ‘two-edged sword’ particularly in low-income countries where chronic malnutrition is very high. The disease is still very high, and it is relapsing to the worst in some countries. The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence and outcome of malnutrition among patients with COVID-19. This study is a systemic review and meta-analysis of 14 studies with 4187 participants. Results indicate that the prevalence of malnutrition was very high among hospitalized patients with COVID-19, and that mortality among hospitalized patients with COVID-19 was more than 10 times more likely as compared to those who were well-nourished. Authors conclude that a mitigating strategy by different stakeholders is needed to prevent and manage malnutrition and its outcomes.
BACKGROUND Malnutrition is inevitable in patients with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) due to its effect on the gastrointestinal system, immune system, and high metabolic activity. However, the prevalence of malnutrition and its outcomes is uncertain. This study aimed to investigate the prevalence and outcome of malnutrition among patients with COVID-19. METHOD A comprehensive search was conducted in PubMed/Medline; Science direct and LILACS from December 29, 2019 to September, 2020 without language restriction. All observational studies reporting the prevalence of malnutrition were included while case reports and reviews were excluded. The data were extracted with two independent authors with a customized format and the disagreements were resolved by the other authors. The methodological quality of included studies was evaluated using a standardized critical appraisal tool. RESULTS A total of 511 articles were identified from different databases and 27 articles were selected for evaluation after the successive screening. Fourteen articles with 4187 participants were included. The pooled prevalence of malnutrition among hospitalized patients with COVID-19 was 49.11% (95% CI: 31.67 to 66.54). The odd of mortality among patients COVID-19 with malnutrition was 10 times more likely as compared to those who were well-nourished. CONCLUSION The prevalence of malnutrition and mortality associated with malnutrition among COVID-19 hospitalized patients was very high which entails a mitigating strategy by different stakeholders to prevent and manage malnutrition and its outcomes. REGISTRATION This systematic review was registered in Prospero's international prospective register of systematic reviews (CRD42020215396).
Micronutrients Deficiency, Supplementation and Novel Coronavirus Infections-A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.
Plain language summary
Coronaviruses are a family of enveloped RNA viruses capable of infecting both humans and animals. A robust immune system has general protective effects against disease infection and severity. Micronutrients are shown to be fundamental in strengthening and maintaining immune function. The aim of this study was to systematically assess the associations between micronutrient supplementation or deficiency, with novel coronavirus incidence and its associated severity. This study is a systematic review and meta-analysis of 19 studies. Only literature on COVID-19 induced by SARS-CoV-2 were recovered from the systematic search. Results demonstrate significantly reduced odds of COVID-19 incidence, and ICU admissions or severe/critical disease onset in individuals without micronutrient deficiency. Authors conclude that integrating micronutrients into the prevention and therapeutic management of COVID-19 may complement nonpharmaceutical interventions to reduce the risk of transmission and disease severity in an unvaccinated population.
BACKGROUND Micronutrients play roles in strengthening and maintaining immune function, but their supplementation and/or deficiency effects on respiratory tract infections are inconclusive. This review aims to systematically assess the associations between micronutrient supplementation or deficiency, with novel coronavirus incidence and disease severity. METHODS Systematic literature searches conducted in five electronic databases identified 751 unique studies, of which 33 studies (five supplementation studies, one supplementation and deficiency study, and 27 deficiency studies) were eventually included in this review. Proportions of incidence and severity outcomes in each group, and adjusted summary statistics with their relevant 95% confidence intervaIs (CI) were extracted. Data from 19 studies were pooled in meta-analysis using the generic inverse variance method. FINDINGS A total of 360,346 patients across 16 countries, with a mean age between 32 and 87.7 years, were involved across 33 studies. All studies were on COVID-19 infections. In individuals without micronutrient deficiency, there was a significant reduction on odds of COVID-19 incidence (pooled OR: 0.37, 95% CI: 0.18, 0.78), and ICU admissions or severe/critical disease onset when combined as a severity outcome (pooled OR: 0.26, 95% CI: 0.08, 0.89). Insignificant protective effects were observed on other outcome measures, namely mortality, ICU admission, progression to respiratory-related complications, severe/critical disease onset or requiring respiratory support and hospitalization rate. CONCLUSION The absence of micronutrient deficiency significantly reduced COVID-19 incidence and clinical deterioration in hospitalized patients. Usage of micronutrients as prophylaxis and complementary supplement in therapeutic management of COVID-19 patients may be a promising and cost-effective approach warranting in-depth investigation.
6-month neurological and psychiatric outcomes in 236 379 survivors of COVID-19: a retrospective cohort study using electronic health records.
The lancet. Psychiatry. 2021;8(5):416-427
Plain language summary
Recent literature shows that COVID-19 survivors might be at an increased risk of neurological and psychiatric disorders. The aim of this study was to investigate the incidence of neurological and psychiatric diagnoses in survivors in the 6 months after documented clinical COVID-19 infection. This study is a retrospective cohort study with the primary cohort comprised of 236,379 patients diagnosed with COVID-19 and two propensity-score-matched control cohorts. The primary cohort was divided into one of the four subgroups. Results indicate that the severity of COVID-19 had a clear effect on subsequent neurological diagnoses. In fact, COVID-19 was associated with an increased risk of neurological and psychiatric outcomes. However, the incidences and hazard ratio of these were greater in patients who had required hospitalisation, and particularly those who required ITU admission or developed encephalopathy, even after extensive propensity score matching for other factors. Authors conclude that COVID-19 is followed by significant rates of neurological and psychiatric diagnoses over the subsequent 6 months.
BACKGROUND Neurological and psychiatric sequelae of COVID-19 have been reported, but more data are needed to adequately assess the effects of COVID-19 on brain health. We aimed to provide robust estimates of incidence rates and relative risks of neurological and psychiatric diagnoses in patients in the 6 months following a COVID-19 diagnosis. METHODS For this retrospective cohort study and time-to-event analysis, we used data obtained from the TriNetX electronic health records network (with over 81 million patients). Our primary cohort comprised patients who had a COVID-19 diagnosis; one matched control cohort included patients diagnosed with influenza, and the other matched control cohort included patients diagnosed with any respiratory tract infection including influenza in the same period. Patients with a diagnosis of COVID-19 or a positive test for SARS-CoV-2 were excluded from the control cohorts. All cohorts included patients older than 10 years who had an index event on or after Jan 20, 2020, and who were still alive on Dec 13, 2020. We estimated the incidence of 14 neurological and psychiatric outcomes in the 6 months after a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19: intracranial haemorrhage; ischaemic stroke; parkinsonism; Guillain-Barré syndrome; nerve, nerve root, and plexus disorders; myoneural junction and muscle disease; encephalitis; dementia; psychotic, mood, and anxiety disorders (grouped and separately); substance use disorder; and insomnia. Using a Cox model, we compared incidences with those in propensity score-matched cohorts of patients with influenza or other respiratory tract infections. We investigated how these estimates were affected by COVID-19 severity, as proxied by hospitalisation, intensive therapy unit (ITU) admission, and encephalopathy (delirium and related disorders). We assessed the robustness of the differences in outcomes between cohorts by repeating the analysis in different scenarios. To provide benchmarking for the incidence and risk of neurological and psychiatric sequelae, we compared our primary cohort with four cohorts of patients diagnosed in the same period with additional index events: skin infection, urolithiasis, fracture of a large bone, and pulmonary embolism. FINDINGS Among 236 379 patients diagnosed with COVID-19, the estimated incidence of a neurological or psychiatric diagnosis in the following 6 months was 33·62% (95% CI 33·17-34·07), with 12·84% (12·36-13·33) receiving their first such diagnosis. For patients who had been admitted to an ITU, the estimated incidence of a diagnosis was 46·42% (44·78-48·09) and for a first diagnosis was 25·79% (23·50-28·25). Regarding individual diagnoses of the study outcomes, the whole COVID-19 cohort had estimated incidences of 0·56% (0·50-0·63) for intracranial haemorrhage, 2·10% (1·97-2·23) for ischaemic stroke, 0·11% (0·08-0·14) for parkinsonism, 0·67% (0·59-0·75) for dementia, 17·39% (17·04-17·74) for anxiety disorder, and 1·40% (1·30-1·51) for psychotic disorder, among others. In the group with ITU admission, estimated incidences were 2·66% (2·24-3·16) for intracranial haemorrhage, 6·92% (6·17-7·76) for ischaemic stroke, 0·26% (0·15-0·45) for parkinsonism, 1·74% (1·31-2·30) for dementia, 19·15% (17·90-20·48) for anxiety disorder, and 2·77% (2·31-3·33) for psychotic disorder. Most diagnostic categories were more common in patients who had COVID-19 than in those who had influenza (hazard ratio [HR] 1·44, 95% CI 1·40-1·47, for any diagnosis; 1·78, 1·68-1·89, for any first diagnosis) and those who had other respiratory tract infections (1·16, 1·14-1·17, for any diagnosis; 1·32, 1·27-1·36, for any first diagnosis). As with incidences, HRs were higher in patients who had more severe COVID-19 (eg, those admitted to ITU compared with those who were not: 1·58, 1·50-1·67, for any diagnosis; 2·87, 2·45-3·35, for any first diagnosis). Results were robust to various sensitivity analyses and benchmarking against the four additional index health events. INTERPRETATION Our study provides evidence for substantial neurological and psychiatric morbidity in the 6 months after COVID-19 infection. Risks were greatest in, but not limited to, patients who had severe COVID-19. This information could help in service planning and identification of research priorities. Complementary study designs, including prospective cohorts, are needed to corroborate and explain these findings. FUNDING National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Oxford Health Biomedical Research Centre.
Changes in physical activity and sedentary behaviours from before to during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown: a systematic review.
BMJ open sport & exercise medicine. 2021;7(1):e000960
Plain language summary
COVID-19 has led several countries to enforce social distancing in order to reduce the rate of transmission, commonly called ‘lockdown’. These lockdowns have impacted people’s work, education, travel and recreation, and subsequent levels of physical activity (PA) and sedentary behaviours (SB). The aim of this study was to review and compare the changes in all reported PA and SB behaviours during versus before the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, stratifying between adults and children, and special populations. This study is a systemic review of 66 studies which yielded a total of 86981 participants with an age range between 13 and 86 years. Results demonstrated that the majority of studies found that PA declined and SB increased during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, regardless of the subpopulation. In healthy adults and children, PA during lockdown decreased compared with pre-lockdown, despite various government organisations and health or exercise practitioners providing guidance on how to stay active during the pandemic and in self-quarantine. Authors conclude that the public health officials should promote ways of increasing PA and reducing SB should further lockdowns occur, especially in populations with medical conditions that are improved by PA.
OBJECTIVE In March 2020, several countries banned unnecessary outdoor activities during COVID-19, commonly called 'lockdowns. These lockdowns have the potential to impact associated levels of physical activity and sedentary behaviour. Given the numerous health outcomes associated with physical activity and sedentary behaviour, the aim of this review was to summarise literature that investigated differences in physical activity and sedentary behaviour before vs during the COVID-19 lockdown. DESIGN DATA SOURCES AND ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA Electronic databases were searched from November 2019 to October 2020 using terms and synonyms relating to physical activity, sedentary behaviour and COVID-19. The coprimary outcomes were changes in physical activity and/or sedentary behaviour captured via device-based measures or self-report tools. Risk of bias was measured using the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale. RESULTS Sixty six articles met the inclusion criteria and were included in the review (total n=86 981). Changes in physical activity were reported in 64 studies, with the majority of studies reporting decreases in physical activity and increases in sedentary behaviours during their respective lockdowns across several populations, including children and patients with a variety of medical conditions. CONCLUSION Given the numerous physical and mental benefits of increased physical activity and decreased sedentary behaviour, public health strategies should include the creation and implementation of interventions that promote safe physical activity and reduce sedentary behaviour should other lockdowns occur.
Physical inactivity is associated with a higher risk for severe COVID-19 outcomes: a study in 48 440 adult patients.
British journal of sports medicine. 2021;55(19):1099-1105
Plain language summary
Regular physical activity may prevent poor outcomes due to COVID-19 in several ways such as improving immune function and reducing inflammation which may contribute to lung damage. However, lockdown measures in many countries have led to a reduction in physical activity. This observational study of 48440 patients with COVID-19 aimed to determine if regular physical activity had a protective effect for severe COVID-19 outcomes. The results showed that patients with COVID-19 who were inactive were more likely to be hospitalised, admitted to intensive care and die compared to individuals who were meeting activity guidelines set by the government in the USA and those who were doing some sort of physical activity. Interestingly individuals who were inactive were more at risk of hospitalisation, admission to intensive care and death than individuals who smoked and who had a chronic disease, indicating the role that physical activity may have in preventing poor outcomes in patients with COVID-19. It was concluded that meeting physical activity guidelines was associated with a reduced risk of severe COVID-19 outcomes. This study could be used by healthcare professionals to understand the importance of recommending activity to individuals during the COVID-19 pandemic.
OBJECTIVES To compare hospitalisation rates, intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and mortality for patients with COVID-19 who were consistently inactive, doing some activity or consistently meeting physical activity guidelines. METHODS We identified 48 440 adult patients with a COVID-19 diagnosis from 1 January 2020 to 21 October 2020, with at least three exercise vital sign measurements from 19 March 2018 to 18 March 2020. We linked each patient's self-reported physical activity category (consistently inactive=0-10 min/week, some activity=11-149 min/week, consistently meeting guidelines=150+ min/week) to the risk of hospitalisation, ICU admission and death after COVID-19 diagnosis. We conducted multivariable logistic regression controlling for demographics and known risk factors to assess whether inactivity was associated with COVID-19 outcomes. RESULTS Patients with COVID-19 who were consistently inactive had a greater risk of hospitalisation (OR 2.26; 95% CI 1.81 to 2.83), admission to the ICU (OR 1.73; 95% CI 1.18 to 2.55) and death (OR 2.49; 95% CI 1.33 to 4.67) due to COVID-19 than patients who were consistently meeting physical activity guidelines. Patients who were consistently inactive also had a greater risk of hospitalisation (OR 1.20; 95% CI 1.10 to 1.32), admission to the ICU (OR 1.10; 95% CI 0.93 to 1.29) and death (OR 1.32; 95% CI 1.09 to 1.60) due to COVID-19 than patients who were doing some physical activity. CONCLUSIONS Consistently meeting physical activity guidelines was strongly associated with a reduced risk for severe COVID-19 outcomes among infected adults. We recommend efforts to promote physical activity be prioritised by public health agencies and incorporated into routine medical care.
A Randomized Controlled Trial of the Efficacy of Systemic Enzymes and Probiotics in the Resolution of Post-COVID Fatigue.
Medicines (Basel, Switzerland). 2021;8(9)
Plain language summary
Coronavirus disease-19 (Covid-19) usually lasts for 7-10 days but in a proportion of individuals, long-term symptoms may develop such as fatigue, which can last for at least 12 weeks. Disruptions to the immune system and parts of the cell which produce energy have been observed in these individuals. This randomised control trial of 200 individuals aimed to determine the combined effects of two different multi-enzyme and probiotic supplements; ImmunoSEB and ProbioSEB on Covid-19 induced fatigue. The results showed that supplementation resolved fatigue and lowered fatigue in those who were still fatigued after 14 days compared to taking a placebo. Mental fatigue was also reduced in the supplemented group compared to placebo. It was concluded that 14 days of supplementation with ImmunoSEB and ProbioSEB resolves post-Covid-19 fatigue. This study could be used by health care professionals to recommend the supplementation of ImmunoSEB and ProbioSEB to improve feelings of and in some case resolve fatigue associated with Covid-19.
Conflicts of interest:
A: Meta-analyses, position-stands, randomized-controlled trials (RCTs)
B: Systematic reviews including RCTs of limited number
C: Non-randomized trials, observational studies, narrative reviews
D: Case-reports, evidence-based clinical findings
E: Opinion piece, other
This study reports on a randomized, multicentric, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial that was conducted in n=200 subjects with post-COVID-19 fatigue and without active SARSCoV-2 infection, living in India. This study sought to assess the efficacy of a multi-enzyme formulation administered with a probiotic complex on COVID-19-induced fatigue.
Subjects were between the ages of 18 and 75 years, with RT-PCR, confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 at any time followed by an RT-PCR negative test who experienced fatigue and muscle weakness. Subjects were randomized to a test arm (n = 100), an oral supplement of a systemic enzyme complex and a probiotic complex for 14 days, or the control arm (n = 100) which used a placebo.
The multi-enzyme supplement formulation included Peptizyme SP, an enteric coated serratiopeptidase, bromelain, amylase, lysozyme, peptidase, catalase, papain, glucoamylase and lactoferrin. The probiotic supplement included, a blend of Bacillus coagulans LBSC (DSM 17654), Bacillus subtilis PLSSC (ATCC SD 7280) and Bacillus clausii 088AE (MCC 0538).
Treatment efficacy was compared using the Chalder Fatigue scale (CFQ-11), at various time points from days 1 to 14. At endpoint, 200/200 subjects finished the study.
Primary clinical outcomes were:
- The supplemental treatment resulted in the resolution of fatigue by 182 of 200 (91%) in the test arm compared to 30 of 200 (15%) in the control arm on day 14 (p<0.001)
- A beneficial effect was seen even at earlier time points, with a greater proportion of patients in the test arm being fatigue- free on days 4 (16% vs. 0%), 8 (44% vs. 2%), and 11 (87% vs. 7%) vs. the control arm (p<0.001).
The supplements were well tolerated with no adverse events reported.
Secondary clinical outcomes were:
- Subjects in the test arm showed a significant reduction in total as well as physical and mental fatigue scores at all time points vs. the control arm (p<0.001)
- On day 14, there was a significant reduction in all individual measures of physical fatigue (tiredness, need to rest, drowsiness, ability to do things, energy level, muscle strength and feeling of weakness) as well as mental fatigue (concentration, focus and memory) in the test arm vs. the control arm (p<0.001).
Clinical practice applications:
- There have been reports of post-viral fatigue syndrome up to 12 months in other coronavirus infections such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS). A lengthy post-infection fatigue impairs quality of life and has a significant impact on individuals, employers, and the healthcare system. It is therefore essential for clinicians to have early interventions to promote recovery of COVID-19 patients.
- Based on this study, practitioners could therefore consider multi-enzymes and probiotics together with other evidence-based multidisciplinary care approaches to improve functional status and quality of life in patients suffering from post-viral fatigue from COVID-19.
Considerations for future research:
- The treatment period of the study was a one-time intervention of 14 days with no long-term follow-up. A long-term follow-up of patients in future studies is needed to evaluate the potential of recurring fatigue.
- Future studies are also needed to replicate these findings and to test for certain inflammatory and immunity markers to provide further insight into the mechanism of action of supplementing with multi-enzymes, Bacillus coagulans, Bacillus subtilis, and Bacillus clausii.
- Additionally, further investigation is needed to evaluate the effectiveness of multi-enzymes, Bacillus coagulans, Bacillus subtilis, and Bacillus clausii in patients with persistent fatigue for six months or beyond to address the needs of patients suffering from chronic fatigue.
- All the subjects in the study were of Indian ethnicity, therefore further studies of other ethnicities are required.
- This study was capped at 75-year-olds, thus studies in older subjects are warranted.
- Conflict of interest statement: This study was fully funded by the manufacturer of the specialty enzymes and probiotics and the authors are paid employees of the manufacturer.
Muscle fatigue and cognitive disturbances persist in patients after recovery from acute COVID-19 disease. However, there are no specific treatments for post-COVID fatigue. Objective: To evaluate the efficacy and safety of the health supplements ImmunoSEB (systemic enzyme complex) and ProbioSEB CSC3 (probiotic complex) in patients suffering from COVID-19 induced fatigue. A randomized, multicentric, double blind, placebo-controlled trial was conducted in 200 patients with a complaint of post-COVID fatigue. The test arm (n = 100) received the oral supplements for 14 days and the control arm (n = 100) received a placebo. Treatment efficacy was compared using the Chalder Fatigue scale (CFQ-11), at various time points from days 1 to 14. The supplemental treatment resulted in resolution of fatigue in a greater percentage of subjects in the test vs. the control arm (91% vs. 15%) on day 14. Subjects in the test arm showed a significantly greater reduction in total as well as physical and mental fatigue scores at all time points vs. the control arm. The supplements were well tolerated with no adverse events reported. This study demonstrates that a 14 days supplementation of ImmunoSEB + ProbioSEB CSC3 resolves post-COVID-19 fatigue and can improve patients' functional status and quality of life.
Digital cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia promotes later health resilience during the coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) pandemic.
Plain language summary
The 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has had health consequences that extend well-beyond symptoms of the virus. Mental health problems are already being observed in the context of COVID-19 and have also been documented during previous epidemics. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of prior digital cognitive-behavioural therapy for insomnia (dCBT-I) versus sleep education on health resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study is a follow up study based on a previous randomised controlled trial [SPREAD trial] for which the enrolled participants were divided into two groups: 358 in the dCBT-I condition and 300 in the control condition. For this follow-up study 208 participants (dCBT-I: n = 102; control: n = 106) out of the total 658 participants were enrolled. Results indicate that 67.3% of the sample reported direct impact from the coronavirus, and 26.4% reported living alone during the shelter-in-place orders. Furthermore, those who received dCBT-I reported less insomnia, stress, depression, and better global physical health compared to those who received a sleep education control. Authors conclude that future research should examine the mechanisms by which insomnia treatment may enhance resilience, and the role of dCBT-I in mitigating the adverse health consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic.
STUDY OBJECTIVES Stressful life events contribute to insomnia, psychosocial functioning, and illness. Though individuals with a history of insomnia may be especially vulnerable during stressful life events, risk may be mitigated by prior intervention. This study evaluated the effect of prior digital cognitive-behavioral therapy for insomnia (dCBT-I) versus sleep education on health resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS COVID impact, insomnia, general- and COVID-related stress, depression, and global health were assessed in April 2020 in adults with a history of insomnia who completed a randomized controlled trial of dCBT-I (n = 102) versus sleep education control (n = 106) in 2016-2017. Regression analyses were used to evaluate the effect of intervention conditions on subsequent stress and health during the pandemic. RESULTS Insomnia symptoms were significantly associated with COVID-19 related disruptions, and those who previously received dCBT-I reported less insomnia symptoms, less general stress and COVID-related cognitive intrusions, less depression, and better global health than those who received sleep education. Moreover, the odds for resurgent insomnia was 51% lower in the dCBT-I versus control condition. Similarly, odds of moderate to severe depression during COVID-19 was 57% lower in the dCBT-I condition. CONCLUSIONS Those who received dCBT-I had increased health resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic in adults with a history of insomnia and ongoing mild to moderate mental health symptoms. These data provide evidence that dCBT-I is a powerful tool to promote mental and physical health during stressors, including the COVID-19 pandemic. CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION NCT02988375.
Clinical applications of detecting IgG, IgM or IgA antibody for the diagnosis of COVID-19: A meta-analysis and systematic review.
International journal of infectious diseases : IJID : official publication of the International Society for Infectious Diseases. 2021;104:415-422
Plain language summary
The rapidly spreading nature of COVID-19 has put an emphasis on the importance of fast diagnosis. Gold standard diagnosis is through reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests, which aims to detect the presence of COVID-19. However, challenges with collection techniques and when in the disease lifecycle these tests are taken, can affect their reliability, highlighting a need for alternative methods of testing. Other testing methods exist, which involve testing the body’s own immune response to the presence of COVID-19, however these may also have their limitations. This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to determine the effectiveness of testing the body’s own immune reaction for the presence of COVID-19. The results showed that testing the body’s immune reaction was effective, however if the person being tested is at an early stage in the disease, then it may be misdiagnosed. This study could be used by healthcare professionals to understand that the use of any type of COVID-19 testing may have its limitations, and although a person may test negative, there is still a possibility that they have the infection if symptoms exist
BACKGROUND The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has had a devastating impact worldwide, and timely detection and quarantine of infected patients are critical to prevent spread of disease. Serological antibody testing is an important diagnostic method used increasingly in clinics, although its clinical application is still under investigation. METHODS A meta-analysis was conducted to compare the diagnostic performance of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 antibody tests in patients with COVID-19. The test results analysed included: (1) IgM-positive but IgG-negative (IgM+IgG-); (2) IgG-positive but IgM-negative (IgG+IgM-); (3) both IgM-positive and IgG-positive (IgM+IgG+); (4) IgM-positive without IgG information (IgM+IgG+/-); (5) IgG-positive without IgM information (IgG+IgM+/-); (6) either IgM-positive or IgG-positive (IgM+ or IgG+); and (7) IgA-positive (IgA+). RESULTS Sixty-eight studies were included. Pooled sensitivities for IgM+IgG-, IgG+IgM-, IgM+IgG+, IgM+IgG+/-, IgG+IgM+/-, and IgM+ or IgG+ were 6%, 7%, 53%, 68%, 73% and 79% respectively. Pooled specificities ranged from 98% to 100%. IgA+ had a pooled sensitivity of 78% but a relatively low specificity of 88%. Tests conducted 2 weeks after symptom onset showed better diagnostic accuracy than tests conducted earlier. Chemiluminescence immunoassay and detection of S protein as the antigen could offer more accurate diagnostic results. DISCUSSION These findings support the supplemental role of serological antibody tests in the diagnosis of COVID-19. However, their capacity to diagnose COVID-19 early in the disease course could be limited.