Original Article

Does Mild Coronavirus Disease 2019 Pneumonia in Healthy Adults Cause Permanent Small Airway Injury?

Authors: Buket Caliskaner Ozturk, MD, Enes Furkan Aykac, MD, Ilgim Vardaloglu, MD, Nihal Enşen, PhD, Gunay Can, MD, Sermin Borekci, MD, Bilun Gemicioglu, MD, PhD

Abstract

Objectives: Impulse oscillometry (IOS) is a type of oscillation technique that measures the input impedance (Z) of the respiratory system and can be used to detect pathological changes in the small airways at an early stage. Although coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) affects the vascular and parenchymal structures in the lung, chronic postinfection coughs also may be attributed to small airway pathologies. Our research aimed to use IOS for the assessment of the presence of small airway resistance (R) in patients who have had COVID-19.

Methods: Thirty-eight patients with past COVID-19 infections and without any presence or medical treatment of an airway disease who presented to the post-COVID outpatient clinic with coughing symptoms were included in the study. The control group consisted of 17 patients with no past COVID-19 infection and without an airway disease. IOS and spirometry were performed twice in the case group, at 3 and 6 months after COVID-19.

Results: The mean age of the case group was 44.7 ± 12.3 years, whereas the mean age of the control group was 49.4 ± 11.8 years. The case group consisted of 38 patients, whereas 17 patients constituted the control group. No statistically significant difference was found between the two groups in the first and second test measurements, performed 3 months apart (P > 0.05).

Conclusions: The fact that there was no difference between respiratory system impedance, airway resistance, and spirometry values between groups with and without past COVID-19 infections supported the hypothesis that small airways were not affected 3 months after COVID-19.
Posted in: Infectious Disease133

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