Publication date: Sep 30, 2023
Many individuals hospitalised with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection experience post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC), sometimes referred to as “long COVID”. Our objective was to conduct a systematic literature review and meta-analysis to identify PASC-associated symptoms in previously hospitalised patients and determine the frequency and temporal nature of PASC. Searches of MEDLINE, Embase, Cochrane Library (2019-2021), World Health Organization International Clinical Trials Registry Platform and reference lists were performed from November to December 2021. Articles were assessed by two reviewers against eligibility criteria and a risk of bias tool. Symptom data were synthesised by random effects meta-analyses. Of 6942 records, 52 studies with at least 100 patients were analysed; ∼70% were Europe-based studies. Most data were from the first wave of the pandemic. PASC symptoms were analysed from 28 days after hospital discharge. At 1-4 months post-acute SARS-CoV-2 infection, the most frequent individual symptoms were fatigue (29. 3% (95% CI 20. 1-40. 6%)) and dyspnoea (19. 6% (95% CI 12. 8-28. 7%)). Many patients experienced at least one symptom at 4-8 months (73. 1% (95% CI 44. 2-90. 3%)) and 8-12 months (75. 0% (95% CI 56. 4-87. 4%)). A wide spectrum of persistent PASC-associated symptoms were reported over the 1-year follow-up period in a significant proportion of participants. Further research is needed to better define PASC duration and determine whether factors such as disease severity, vaccination and treatments have an impact on PASC.
|disease||VO||Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2|
|disease||MESH||post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection|