Clinical Predictors of Lung Function in Patients Recovering From Mild COVID-19

Arturo Cortes-Telles; Esperanza Figueroa-Hurtado; Diana Lizbeth Ortiz-Farias; Gerald Stanley Zavorsky


BMC Pulm Med. 2022;22(294) 

In This Article


Our study has some limitations. In addition to not having measured lung volumes with plethysmography, we do not have any baseline lung function data in these patients prior to SARS-CoV-2 infection or a control group due to the pandemic to perform further analysis. However, most studies involving lung function analysis among COVID-19 survivors were done with the same limitation. Indeed, it is difficult to determine with certainty that these patients with poor diffusing capacity and/or a restrictive spirometric pattern are due to them having mild COVID-19. Nonetheless, these patients are compared against established reference norms. The prevalence of an impaired DLCO in our sample was five times more than expected in a normal population and at least two-fold more than expected for a restrictive spirometric pattern. To reduce this bias, we analysed all risk factors related to lung function abnormalities, including published studies. Also, there is a gap in implementing regular lung function assessments in suspected obstructive lung disease cases. Instead, chest x-ray studies are more frequently requested, especially in countries with limited-resource settings; therefore, it is expected that patients were not subjected to pulmonary function tests prior to SARS-CoV-2 infection.