Special Issue "COVID-19-Associated Diseases: The Uncertainty of Diagnosis and Treatment"

A special issue of Medicines (ISSN 2305-6320).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2022.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Akram Zaaqoq
E-Mail
Guest Editor
Department of Critical Care Medicine, MedStar Washington Hospital Center/Georgetown University, USA

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,  

Since the eruption of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS- CoV-2) at the end of December 2019, healthcare systems around the globe and the scientific community have been facing significant challenges. One of the great challenges is the uncertainty in understanding the etiology, diagnosis, and managing the disease. This confusion negatively impacts both the patients and the healthcare providers. After a year in the pandemic, in this Special Issue of Medicines, we call on clinicians and scientists to consolidate their experiences in light of the available evidence and share their invaluable work with the scientific community to help as many patients as possible with our collective capabilities.

Dr. Akram Zaaqoq
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • ARDS
  • systemic inflammation
  • COVID-19
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • acute renal failure
  • myocarditis
  • thrombosis
  • coagulopathy
  • long-term effects
  • vaccinations

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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Article
Mortality of Patients Infected by COVID-19 with and without Deep-Vein Thrombosis
Medicines 2021, 8(12), 75; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicines8120075 - 29 Nov 2021
Viewed by 609
Abstract
Background: Current evidence points to a state of hypercoagulability (consequence of hyperinflammation) as an important pathogenic mechanism that contributes to the increase in mortality in cases of COVID-19. The aim of the present study was to investigate the influence of deep-vein thrombosis on [...] Read more.
Background: Current evidence points to a state of hypercoagulability (consequence of hyperinflammation) as an important pathogenic mechanism that contributes to the increase in mortality in cases of COVID-19. The aim of the present study was to investigate the influence of deep-vein thrombosis on mortality patient’s infected with SARS-CoV-2. Method: A clinical trial was conducted involving 200 consecutive patients with COVID-19—100 patients who were positive for deep-vein thrombosis (venous Doppler ultrasound) and 100 who were negative for deep-vein thrombosis at a public hospital. Results: The mortality rate was 67% in the group positive for DVT and 31% in the group negative for DVT. Conclusion: Deep-vein thrombosis is associated with an increase in mortality in patients with COVID-19 and failures can occur with conventional prophylaxis for deep-vein thrombosis. Full article
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Article
The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Medical Imaging Case Volumes in Aseer Region: A Retrospective Study
Medicines 2021, 8(11), 70; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicines8110070 - 12 Nov 2021
Viewed by 698
Abstract
COVID-19 has had a significant impact on global health systems. The aim of this study was to evaluate how imaging volumes and imaging types in radiology departments have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic across different locations. Methods: Imaging volumes in the Aseer [...] Read more.
COVID-19 has had a significant impact on global health systems. The aim of this study was to evaluate how imaging volumes and imaging types in radiology departments have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic across different locations. Methods: Imaging volumes in the Aseer region (in the south of Saudi Arabia) across main hospitals were reviewed retrospectively including all cases referred from different locations (outpatient, inpatient and emergency departments). Data for years 2019 and 2020 were compared. The mean monthly cases were compared using a t-test. Results: The total imaging volumes in 2019 were 205,805 compared to 159,107 in 2020 with a 22.7% overall reduction. A substantial decline was observed in both the April to June and the July to September periods of approximately 42.9% and 44.4%, respectively. With respect to location, between April and June, the greatest decline was observed in outpatient departments (76% decline), followed by emergency departments (25% decline), and the least impact was observed in inpatient departments, with only 6.8% decline over the same period. According to modality type, the greatest decreases were reported in nuclear medicine, ultrasound, MRI, and mammography, by 100%, 76%, 74%, and 66%, respectively. Our results show a statistically significant (p-value 0.05) decrease of cases in 2020 compared to 2019, except for mammography procedures. Conclusion: There has been a significant decline in radiology volumes due to COVID-19. The overall reduction in radiology volumes was dependent on the stage/period of lockdown, location, and imaging modality. Full article
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Article
A Randomized Controlled Trial of the Efficacy of Systemic Enzymes and Probiotics in the Resolution of Post-COVID Fatigue
Medicines 2021, 8(9), 47; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicines8090047 - 30 Aug 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3086
Abstract
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) [...] Read more.
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. Full article
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Review

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Review
Laparoscopy in Gynecologic and Abdominal Surgery in Regional (Spinal, Peridural) Anesthesia, the Utility of the Technique during COVID-19 Pandemic
Medicines 2021, 8(10), 60; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicines8100060 - 19 Oct 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1111
Abstract
Background: laparoscopic surgery is mainly performed in general anesthesia. Symptomatic patients infected with COVID-19 needing surgery are however at higher risk for COVID-19 complications in general anesthesia than in regional anesthesia. Even so, Covid transfection is a hazard to medical personnel during the [...] Read more.
Background: laparoscopic surgery is mainly performed in general anesthesia. Symptomatic patients infected with COVID-19 needing surgery are however at higher risk for COVID-19 complications in general anesthesia than in regional anesthesia. Even so, Covid transfection is a hazard to medical personnel during the intubation procedure and treatment drugs may be in shortage during a pandemic. Recovery and hospital stay are also shorter after laparoscopy. Laparoscopy performed in regional anesthesia may have several advantages in limiting Covid. Methods: international literature on the risk of COVID-19 complications development was searched. 3 topics concerning laparoscopic surgery were reviewed: (1) Achievements in laparoscopy; (2) Advantages of regional anesthesia compared to general anesthesia; (3) Feasibility to perform laparoscopy in regional anesthesia in COVID-19 pandemic. The authors reviewed abstracts and full-text articles concerning laparoscopic surgery, gynecology, anesthesia and COVID-19. Studies published in PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library and found in Google Scholar before 1st FEB, 2021 were retrieved and analyzed. Results: a total of 83 studies were found, all of them written in English. 17 studies could be found in gynecology and in general surgery about laparoscopy with regional anesthesia. In Covid time only one study compared laparoscopic surgery in general anesthesia to laparotomy and another study laparotomy in general anesthesia to regional anesthesia. Laparoscopy showed no disadvantage compared to laparotomy in Covid pandemic and in another study laparotomy in general anesthesia was associated with higher mortality and more pulmonary complications. Trendelenburg position can be a threat if used by inexperienced personnel and can induce unintended anesthesia of breathing organs. On the other hand Trendelenburg position has advantages for cardiovascular and pulmonary functions. Pneumoperitoneum of low CO2 pressure is well tolerated by patients. Conclusions: elective surgery should be postponed in symptomatic Covid patients. In inevitable emergency surgery intubation anesthesia in COVID-19 pandemic is as far as possible to be avoided. In COVID-19 pandemic, regional anesthesia is the preferred choice. The optimum may be the combination of laparoscopic surgery with regional anesthesia. Reducing the pneumoperitoneum is a good compromise for the comfort of patients and surgeons. A special case is gynecology, which needs to be performed in Trendelenburg position to free pelvic organs. Full article

Other

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Opinion
COVID-19 Infection and Neuropathological Features
Medicines 2021, 8(10), 59; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicines8100059 - 11 Oct 2021
Viewed by 1016
Abstract
The pathology associated with COVID-19 infection is progressively being revealed. Recent postmortem assessments have revealed acute airway inflammation as well as diffuse alveolar damage, which bears resemblance to severe acute respiratory syndromes induced by both SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV infections. Although recent papers have [...] Read more.
The pathology associated with COVID-19 infection is progressively being revealed. Recent postmortem assessments have revealed acute airway inflammation as well as diffuse alveolar damage, which bears resemblance to severe acute respiratory syndromes induced by both SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV infections. Although recent papers have highlighted some neuropathologies associated with COVID-19 infection, little is known about this topic of great importance in the area of public health. Here, we discuss how neuroinflammation related to COVID-19 could be triggered by direct viral neuroinvasion and/or cytokine release over the course of the infection. Full article
Opinion
Autoimmune Disorders & COVID-19
Medicines 2021, 8(10), 55; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicines8100055 - 28 Sep 2021
Viewed by 1262
Abstract
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) can progress to severe pneumonia with respiratory failure and is aggravated by the deregulation of the immune system causing an excessive inflammation including the cytokine storm. Since 2019, several studies regarding the interplay between autoimmune diseases and COVID-19 infections [...] Read more.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) can progress to severe pneumonia with respiratory failure and is aggravated by the deregulation of the immune system causing an excessive inflammation including the cytokine storm. Since 2019, several studies regarding the interplay between autoimmune diseases and COVID-19 infections is increasing all over the world. In addition, thanks to new scientific findings, we actually know better why certain conditions are considered a higher risk in both situations. There are instances when having an autoimmune disease increases susceptibility to COVID-19 complications, such as when autoantibodies capable of neutralizing type I IFN are present, and other situations in which having COVID-19 infection precedes the appearance of various autoimmune and autoinflammatory diseases, including multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), Guillain-Barré syndrome, and Autoimmune haemolytic anaemia (AIHA), thus, adding to the growing mystery surrounding the SARS-CoV-2 virus and raising questions about the nature of its link with autoimmune and autoinflammatory sequelae. Herein, we discuss the role of host and virus genetics and some possible immunological mechanisms that might lead to the disease aggravation. Full article
Opinion
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Crisis Measures: Health Protective Properties?
Medicines 2021, 8(9), 49; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicines8090049 - 02 Sep 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1233
Abstract
The ongoing 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) crisis has led governments to impose measures including mask wearing, physical distancing, and increased hygiene and disinfection, combined with home confinement and economic shutdown. Such measures have heavy negative consequences both on public health and the economy. [...] Read more.
The ongoing 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) crisis has led governments to impose measures including mask wearing, physical distancing, and increased hygiene and disinfection, combined with home confinement and economic shutdown. Such measures have heavy negative consequences both on public health and the economy. However, these same measures have positive outcomes as “side effects” that are worth mentioning since they contribute to the improvement of some aspects of the population health. For instance, mask wearing helps to reduce allergies as well as the transmission of other airborne disease-causing pathogens. Physical distancing and social contact limitation help limit the spread of communicable diseases, and economic shutdown can reduce pollution and the health problems related to it. Decision makers could get inspired by these positive “side effects” to tackle and prevent diseases like allergies, infectious diseases and noncommunicable diseases, and improve health care and pathology management. Indeed, the effectiveness of such measures in tackling certain health problems encourages inspiration from COVID-19 measures towards managing selected health problems. However, with the massive damage COVID-19-related measures have caused to countries’ economies and people’s lives, the question of how to balance the advantages and disadvantages of these measures in order to further optimize them needs to be debated among health care professionals and decision makers. Full article
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Commentary
Importance of Apolipoprotein A-I and A-II Composition in HDL and Its Potential for Studying COVID-19 and SARS-CoV-2
Medicines 2021, 8(7), 38; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicines8070038 - 16 Jul 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1650
Abstract
The composition and properties of apolipoprotein (apo) A-I and apoA-II in high-density lipoproteins (HDL) might be critical to SARS-CoV-2 infection via SR-BI and antiviral activity against COVID-19. HDL containing native apoA-I showed potent antiviral activity, while HDL containing glycated apoA-I or other apolipoproteins [...] Read more.
The composition and properties of apolipoprotein (apo) A-I and apoA-II in high-density lipoproteins (HDL) might be critical to SARS-CoV-2 infection via SR-BI and antiviral activity against COVID-19. HDL containing native apoA-I showed potent antiviral activity, while HDL containing glycated apoA-I or other apolipoproteins did not. However, there has been no report to elucidate the putative role of apoA-II in the antiviral activity of HDL. Full article
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