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Lan Chen, Zhen-Yu Zhang, Xiao-Bin Zhang, Su-Zhen Zhang, Qiu-Ying Han, Zhi-Peng Feng, Jian-Guo Fu, Xiong-Xiao, Hui-Ming Chen, Li-Long Liu, Xian-Li Chen, Yu-Pei Lan, De-Jin Zhong, Jun-HuiWang, Lan Hu and Zhen-Yu Yin*
Background: In China, the patients with previously negative RT-PCR results again test positive during the post-discharge isolation period. We aimed to determine the clinical characteristics of these “recurrent-positive” patients.
Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the data of 15 recurrent-positive patients and 107 control patients with non-recurrent, moderate COVID-19 treated in Wuhan, China. Clinical data and laboratory results were comparatively analyzed.
Results: Recurrent-positive patients had moderate disease. The rate of recurrent-positive disease in our hospital was 1.87%. Recurrent-positive patients were significantly younger (43(35-54) years) than control patients (60(43-69) years) (P=0.011). The overall disease course was significantly longer in recurrent-positive patients (36(34-45) days) than in control patients (15(7-30) days) (P=0.001). The time required for the first conversion of RT-PCR results from positive to negative was significantly longer in recurrent-positive patients (14(10-17) days) than in control patients (6(3-9) days) (P=0.011). Serum COVID-19 antibody levels were significantly lower in recurrent-positive patients than in control patients (IgM: 13.69 ± 4.38 vs. 68.10 ± 20.85 AU/ mL, P=0.015; IgG: 78.53 ± 9.30 vs. 147.85 ± 13.33 AU/mL, P<0.0001).
Conclusion: Recurrent-positive patients were younger than control patients. The first hospitalization time was significantly longer in recurrent-positive patients than in control patients. COVID-19 IgM/IgG antibody levels were significantly lower in recurrent-positive patients than in control patients, which may explain why the virus was not fully eliminated from the body and was able to replicate again after the initial “clinical cure.”
Published Date: 2021-01-27; Received Date: 2021-01-06