Diarrhoea in COVID-19 with Emphasis on Non Respiratory Presentation: A Case Series
Dr. Pawan Tiwari,
Room No. 10, 3rd Floor, Porta Cabin, Department of Pulmonary Critical Care and
Sleep Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi-110029, India.
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection can have myriad presentations ranging from non specific constitutional symptoms to respiratory failure and extrapulmonary manifestations. As COVID-19 is viewed predominantly as an illness of the respiratory tract, extrapulmonary manifestations are often overlooked. The case series is of seven COVID-19 diagnosed patients who presented with diarrhoea, without respiratory symptoms. Clinicodemographic characteristics, hospital course and outcome of these patients are described here. Median age of the patients was 42 years. There were four males and three females. One patient had diabetes mellitus and hypertension, one had hypothyroidism and one had Hodgkin’s lymphoma along with tuberculosis. Five patients had fever while all had diarrhoea as the predominant presenting complaint. Median duration of symptoms was four days before admission. Laboratory abnormalities included anaemia (n=5; 57.1%), lymphopenia (n=3; 42.9%) and elevated inflammatory markers i.e., ferritin and C-reactive protein (n=2; 28.6%). Most patients did not require any specific treatment other than supportive care. All patients were successfully discharged after a median hospital stay of 10 days. Isolated diarrhoea without respiratory symptoms can be presenting complaint of COVID-19 and should be considered by clinicians in current pandemic scenario.