HealthDay News — Specialized imaging shows that posthospitalized COVID-19 patients (PHC) and nonhospitalized patients with post-COVID-19 condition (NHLC) have lung abnormalities, according to a study published online May 24 in Radiology.
James T. Grist, Ph.D., from the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust in the United Kingdom, and colleagues examined whether previously described lung abnormalities on hyperpolarized 129Xenon (Hp-Xe) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in PHC were present in participants with NHLC. Data were included from 11 NHLC and 12 PHC patients, who were about 287 and 143 days from infection, respectively.
The researchers found normal or nearly normal computed tomography scans for NHLC and PHC participants. Gas transfer differed between the groups (76 percent for NHLC and 86 percent for PHC), but no other evidence of differences in lung function was seen. Compared with healthy volunteers, both PHC and NHLC had significantly lower red blood cell:tissue plasma mean, but no difference was seen between NHLC and PHC participants. There was no correlation seen for Full-scale Airway Network modeling with Hp-XeMRI or gas transfer.
“We saw that the ability of gas to transfer from the lungs into the blood stream was less in nonhospitalized patients in comparison to those hospitalized with COVID,” a coauthor said in a statement. “Furthermore, both groups of participants had lower dissolved phase Hp-XeMRI values than healthy participants, pointing to potential defects in either the lining of the lung or the surrounding blood vessels.”