Latest Coronavirus Research: Detailed Pathological Study Of SARS-CoV-2 Coronavirus Induced Early-Phase Lung Infection Revealed
Latest Coronavirus Research
: Medical scientists from the University Of Chicago led By Dr Shu-Yuan Xiao along with clinicians from Zhongnan Hospital Of Wuhan University in an international collaboration have for the first time detailed the pathology of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus in a documented study.
Dr Xiao told Thailand Medical News
, “This is the first documented study to describe the pathology of Covid-19 disease caused by SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus since no autopsy or biopsies had been performed thus far.”
Most significantly she highlighted that this would be the only descriptions of early phase pathology of the disease due to this rare coincidence. Most autopsies will only show late or end stage changes of the disease.
The study describes two cancer patients who recently underwent lung lobectomies for adenocarcinoma and were retrospectively found to have had the Covid-19 disease at the time of surgery.
The detailed pathologic examinations revealed that, apart from the tumors, the lungs of both patients exhibited edema, proteinaceous exudate, focal reactive hyperplasia of pneumocytes with patchy inflammatory cellular infiltration, and multinucleated giant cells. Fibroblastic plugs were noted in airspaces.
Dr. Xiao added, “Since both individuals did not exhibit symptoms of pneumonia at the time of surgery, these changes likely represent an early phase of the lung pathology of Covid-19 induced pneumonia.”
Patient 1 was a female individual of 84 years of age who was admitted for treatment evaluation of a tumor measuring 1.5 centimeters in the right middle lobe of the lung. The tumor was discovered on chest CT scan at an outside hospital.
The patient had a past medical history of hypertension for 30 years, as well as type 2 diabetes. Despite comprehensive treatment, assisted oxygenation, and other supportive care, the patient’s condition deteriorated, and she died.
Investigative clinical information confirmed that she was exposed to another patient in the same room who was subsequently found to be infected with the 2019 novel coronavirus.
Patient 2 was a male individual of 73 years of age, who presented for elective surgery for lung cancer, in the form of a small in the right lower lobe of the lung. He had a past medical history of hypertension for 20 years, which had been adequately managed. Nine days after lung surgery, he developed a fever with dry cough, chest tightness, and muscle pain. A nucleic acid test for SARS-CoV-2 came back as positive. He gradually recovered and was discharged after twenty days of treatment in the infectious disease unit.
The pathological study typify a common scenario during the earlier phase of the SARS-CoV-2 outbreak, during which a significant number of healthcare providers became infected in hospitals in Wuhan, and patients in the same hospital room were cross-infected, as they were exposed to unknown infectious sources.
The study indicates the presence of early lung lesions days before the patients developed symptoms, corresponds to the long incubation period (usually 3-14 days) of Covid-19.Making it difficult to prevent transmission during the early days of this outbreak, as many healthcare workers in Wuhan became infected, when they were seeing patients without sufficient
Hundreds of doctors have died in China of Covid-19, from infections while they were taking care of patients. Some of them were previously healthy and as young as 29 years old.
Dr Xiao further added, “It is imperative to report the findings of routine histopathology for better understanding of the mechanism by which the SARS-CoV-2 causes lung injury in the unfortunate tens and thousands of patients in China and worldwide.”
Dr Xiao’s team and various other collaborators on Covid-19 pathology are conducting further pathology studies through postmortem biopsies so as to also observe and record late changes of the disease.
The study findings have been published the Journal of Thoracic Oncology, the journal of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer.
Reference: Tian, et al. (2020) Pulmonary pathology of early phase 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pneumonia in two patients with lung cancer. JTO DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtho.2020.02.010
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