A retrospective cohort study including 60 pediatric patients hospitalized for asthma was conducted to evaluate the impact of COVID-19 infection on childhood asthma. The patient’s age was between 2-12 years, 58% were male and 10% were diagnosed with COVID-19. The patients were divided into two groups: asthma with COVID-19 and without COVID-19 to study the clinical and laboratory characteristics and hospitalization outcomes.
The results showed significant variations between asthmatic with COVID-19 (90%) and without COVID-19 (4%). Acute upper respiratory infection was the main trigger for asthma in 85% of patients. Cough, shortness of breath, and hypoxia were the most common symptoms. Severe asthma was prevalent among 60% ofCOVID-19 positive patients which is much higher when compared to the 20% of COVID-19 negative patients with severe asthma. Also, chronic asthmatic children for more than 5 years were more prevalent among COVID-19 positive (60%) than COVID-19 negative patients (40%). 75% of patients had at least one type of atopic disease (allergic rhinitis, eczema or food allergies). 55% of patients had eosinophilic asthma (300 cell/μL threshold).
Moreover, COVID-19 positive asthmatic patients had lower eosinophilic and neutrophilic counts and higher median total IgE levels compared to COVID-19 negative asthmatic patients. Additionally, 21.7% required high flow nasal cannula respiratory support. The total days of hospitalization in the PICU or pediatric general ward did not differ between the two groups. Also, there were no signs of serious morbidity or mortality. The study showed that there was no difference in presenting symptoms of asthma flare-up, laboratory indicators, and hospitalization outcomes between asthmatics with and without COVID-19.
However, more research is required to understand the relationship between COVID-19 and childhood asthma.
Ref Link: NCBI
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