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Lung function decline in relation to COVID-19 in the general population: a matched cohort study with pre-pandemic assessment of lung function

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BACKGROUND: To quantify the potential decline in dynamic lung volumes following coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the general population.

METHODS: A prospective matched cohort study of adult Copenhagen General Population Study (CGPS) participants with a prepandemic spirometry available. CGPS individuals with positive severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test performed repeat spirometry, a questionnaire regarding respiratory symptoms, and diffusing capacity test for carbon monoxide. A matched uninfected CGPS control sample was used, and simple regression and linear mixed effect models were computed to study lung function decline.

RESULTS: A total of 606 individuals were included; 92/107 (85.9%) with positive SARS-CoV-2 PCR test experienced coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) symptoms and 12 (11.2%) were hospitalized. Spirometry was performed at median 5.6 months (interquartile range, 3.9-12.8) after positive SARS-CoV-2 PCR test. COVID-19 was associated with adjusted 7.3 mL (95% confidence interval [CI], .3-14.3) and 22.6 mL (95% CI, 13.1-32.0) steeper decline in annual forced expiratory volume in first second (FEV1) and FVC or total 113.8 and 301.3 mL lower FEV1 and FVC from baseline to follow-up. Results were robust in analyses restricted to individuals not requiring hospitalization.

CONCLUSIONS: COVID-19-related declines of dynamic lung volume in the general population not requiring hospitalization were small but measurable.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberjiab636
JournalThe Journal of infectious diseases
Volume225
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)1308-1316
Number of pages9
ISSN0022-1899
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 19 Apr 2022

Bibliographical note

© The Author(s) 2022. Published by Oxford University Press for the Infectious Diseases Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

    Research areas

  • Adult, COVID-19, Cohort Studies, Humans, Lung, Prospective Studies, SARS-CoV-2, Vital Capacity, forced vital capacity, respiratory symptoms, spirometry, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, coronavirus disease 2019, forced expiratory volume in 1 second

ID: 70543167