Han E, Lu E, Heyes A, Mauskopf J, Bracher M, Birch H. Common symptoms in hospitalized COVID-19 patients by age, severity and survival outcome – A literature review. Poster presented at the ERS International Congress 2021; September 5, 2021.

INTRODUCTION: There is a lack of understanding of the variability in common symptoms across various subgroups of hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

AIM: To summarize the published data on common symptoms in hospitalized patients with respect to age, disease severity, and survival outcome.

METHODS: A targeted review of literature published before 21 August 2020 reporting symptoms of hospitalized patients observed in the real-world setting was undertaken using the PubMed/MEDLINE database. Symptom frequencies were compared for patient groups across studies.

RESULTS: The most common symptoms in all patients regardless of age group, disease severity, and survival outcome were fever (68-100%), cough (34-100%), shortness of breath (20-72%), and fatigue (5-65%). Less common symptoms included nausea (3-91%), chills (0-60%), chest pain/tightness (5-61%), dyspnea (0-55%), headache (5-48%), loss of taste (0-41%), diarrhea (0-37%), myalgia (5-30%), vomiting (3- 25%), dizziness (14%), and confusion (0-12%). Older patients had fewer COVID-19-specific symptoms, such as cough, fever, and dyspnea, and more atypical symptoms such as asthenia and confusion. In young children, cough and dyspnea, fever, and catarrh were the most common symptoms. Severely ill patients more often reported fever, anorexia, chest tightness, and dyspnea than non-severely ill patients. In non survivors, shortness of breath, wet cough, fatigue, and chills were more common than in survivors.

CONCLUSIONS: Common symptoms varied by age, severity, and survival status in hospitalized COVID-19 patients. The most common symptoms were fever, cough, shortness of breath, and fatigue in all patient groups.

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