Detection of SARS-CoV-2 Pneumonia: Two Case Reports

Felix S. Seibert; Daniela Toma; Frederic Bauer; Krystallenia Paniskaki; Moritz Anft; Benjamin J. Rohn; Simon Wang; Diana Racovitan; Nina Babel; Timm H. Westhoff


J Med Case Reports. 2020;14(242) 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Background: Developing therapeutic strategies for a SARS-CoV-2 infection is challenging, but first the correct diagnosis has to be made. Unspecific upper and lower respiratory tract symptoms can be misleading; hence, a nasopharyngeal swab test with a real-time reverse-transcription-polymerase chain reaction is of great importance. However, early viral clearing jeopardizes a sound diagnosis of COVID-19.

Case Presentation: We report on two Caucasian patients who had negative pharyngeal swab tests at the onset of SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia. In one patient, the virus was not even detectable in bronchoalveolar lavage despite typical radiomorphologic changes.

Conclusions: Negative PCR findings in both the pharynx and bronchoalveolar lavage do not exclude COVID-19 pneumonia. Computed tomography is a crucial diagnostic prerequisite in this context.