Olfactory and gustatory manifestations in hospitalized patients with COVID-19
Journal of Otorhinolaryngology and Facial Plastic Surgery,
Vol. 6 No. 1 (2020),
12 September 2020
Background: Pulmonary involvement is the main clinical and imaging feature of the novel corona virus disease (COVID-19). However, some patients present with upper airway symptoms.
Aim: In this study, we report upper respiratory manifestations, specifically focusing on smell and taste disorders in COVID-19.
Methods: We performed this cross-sectional prospective study in patients admitted to Masih Daneshvari Hospital, a tertiary referral center in Tehran, Iran, with severe COVID-19 as documented by the polymerase chain reaction assay.
Results: We included 268 hospitalized patients, 183 (68.3%) men and 85 (31.7%) women. The average age was 52.8±16.4. The sinonasal symptoms included nasal obstruction (44 [16.4%]), rhinorrhea (31 [11.5%]), sneeze (33 [12.3%]), headache (77 [28.6%]), facial pain (12 [4.5%]), associated with hypogeusia (65 [24.2%]) and olfactory dysfunction (90 [33.5%]). In 35 (38.9%) patients with olfactory symptoms, change in the smell was the sole initial manifestation of COVID-19. On logistic regression, the relationship between the olfactory symptoms and headache (p=0.002), nasal obstruction (p=0.0001) and sneeze (p=0.018) were statistically significant.
Conclusion: We report a considerable prevalence of olfactory and gustatory symptoms in hospitalized patients with COVID-19. Not infrequently, these symptoms were the sole initial presenting symptoms in the course COVID-19. During the current pandemic, we suggest that presence of these symptoms should mandate expedited screening for COVID-19, isolation and close monitoring of the patients for evolution of the clinical course.
- COVID-19; Olfactory manifestations; Gustatory manifestations
How to Cite
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