SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19
The symptoms of COVID-19 may differ from person to person, also its intensity can vary depending on each case. It should be noted that the disease affects 85% of patients in a mild way. That is, they show mild symptoms of COVID-19 or could even be asymptomatic. In these cases, the disease is overcome without needing hospitalization. Serious complications appear from the seventh day in 15% of COVID-19 cases. Of this 15%, 5 or 10% will also display very serious complications.
The main symptoms of COVID-19 are:
Do you want to know if you have had or have been in contact with COVID-19?
If you want to take a serological test for the diagnosis of COVID-19 or if you have already suffered from the disease and are still facing complications, please contact our professional experts in COVID-19 management.
DIAGNOSIS OF COVID-19
In the early stages, the diagnosis of COVID-19 infection is mainly clinical. This means that in a favourable epidemiological environment anyone with compatible symptoms should be treated as possibly infected with COVID-19.
As with any disease, the diagnosis of COVID-19 depends on several factors: patient history, symptoms and epidemiological situation, in addition to other factors that the health professional must interpret. Some laboratory tests and complementary explorations can help in the diagnosis of COVID-19.
Laboratory tests for COVID-19 include methods to detect genetic material from the virus and/or tests to identify the immune response against SARS-CoV-2.
TYPES OF COVID-19 DIAGNOSTIC TESTS
Polymerase chain reaction or PCR
PCR is the test performed to identify the presence of genetic material from the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. It is the reference standard for the molecular diagnosis of COVID-19 as it has a high sensitivity (it does not give false negatives) and good specificity (it does not give false positives).
PCR serves as a confirmatory diagnosis of COVID-19, detecting the genetic material of the virus in our upper respiratory tract. PCR is performed by inserting a swab into the nose and placing another one in the deep posterior part of the pharynx. The samples are taken to the microbiology laboratory, where the presence of SARS-CoV-2 genetic material - which causes COVID-19 - is either confirmed or discarded.
In general, PCR has a long latency period: the result is available in 8 to 12 hours. For the past few weeks we have also used a rapid PCR, which gives a diagnosis in less than two hours.
At barnaclínic+ we perform PCR tests as a safety measure. This test is performed only on patients who must be admitted to our ward or who must undergo an intervention. We do not offer individual or isolated PCR tests, nor are we in a position to offer treatment and admission for COVID-19.
COVID-19 serology test detects the presence of antibodies produced by the patient as a response to SARS-CoV-2 infection. This test, which can be taken at any stage of the disease, only needs a drop of blood to detect the body's immune response to the presence of the virus. The serological test identifies IgM (immunoglobulin M) and IgG (immunoglobulin G) antibodies, which bind to the virus to deactivate or eliminate it. It can take up to 10 days for the body to release the antibodies, which then stay in the system for two to three months, even if the virus is no longer present.
Do you think you may be suffering from sequelae of COVID-19 and want to confirm or rule it out?
If you have been through COVID-19 and continue to show some of its symptoms - such as breathing difficulties, smell and taste loss, and/or kidney failure - please contact us. Our multidisciplinary team, specialist in dealing with the disease, will advise you and offer medical advice, even remotely.
OUR COVID-19 DIAGNOSTIC OFFER
At barnaclínic+ we design several diagnostic protocols for different patient profiles:
DIAGNOSIS OF COVID-19 BEFORE ENTRY
For the safety of our patients and professionals, we need to make sure that the patients who need to enter our hospitalization room or those who need to undergo an intervention are not in the acute phase of the disease. Therefore, these patients must undergo a PCR for the diagnosis of COVID-19 before admission. Nasal and pharyngeal samples will be collected under appropriate conditions and by specialized personnel. These samples will be sent to the laboratory and we will have the results in 2 hours (rapid test) or between 8 and 12 hours (standard test).
Serological tests are available to those people who have had a compatible clinical picture, as well as those who have not but want to know if they have been in contact with COVID-19. These tests show whether the patient produced antibodies against COVID-19.
To date, there are few studies on COVID-19 sequelae or POST-COVID-19 complications. Studies which are being carried out at present seem to indicate a relationship between the severity and the type of the disease and the following complications or sequelae.
The main Post-COVID-19 complications identified so far are:
· Renal insufficiency
· Neurological sequelae
ASSESSMENT OF COMPLICATIONS AND COVID-19 SEQUELAE
Patients who have gone through COVID-19 and had complications may want to know at what stage of the disease they are at, how it has evolved, whether their issues have all been addressed or if they are still affected by COVID-19-related complications. As we said, the most common complications or sequelae of COVID-19 identified so far are fatigue and breathing difficulties. Others are less frequent though more serious, and may also present complications in the medium and long term. These are: respiratory complications, smell and taste loss, cardiovascular and neurological complications.
In these cases, we offer neurological, imaging, radiology, pulmonary axial and computed tomography, stress and echocardiogram tests, olfactometry tests, etc.
COVID-19 respiratory complications
In a large number of cases, COVID-19 has been shown to cause pneumonia which severely affects both lungs. It was also observed that, in its acute phase, it can produce persistent inflammation or pulmonary embolism, as well as clots in the pulmonary arteries. These complications, as in other viral pneumonias, may cause respiratory complications in the medium and long terms, once COVID-19 is overcome.
Thus, patients who suffer from respiratory complications after COVID-19 will be subjected to a chest CT scan and pulmonary tomography - to see in detail whether these lesions are present - and a pulmonary function test - to check whether the lung capacity was affected.
In addition, some patients may need to do a stress test, an echocardiogram and a blood test, depending on the complications that each patient presents at the time.
Olfactory complications with COVID-19
As we said, one of the most common complications of COVID-19 is anosmia, or loss of the senses of smell and taste (in about 88% of patients). In most cases, this loss will recover spontaneously within one month. However, based on experience with other post-viral anosmias, some patients may continue to experience smell loss in the long term and may need to do an olfactory training to regain their sense of smell.
Patients with loss of the sense of smell and/or taste or post-COVID-19 anosmia will undergo a thorough examination, nasal endoscopy, olfactory bulb resonance and olfactometry tests. With the results of these tests at hand, an expert can assess whether it is necessary for the patient to do olfactory training. Patients on olfactory training will be monitored closely.
MORE INFO ABOUT COVID-19
In the de-escalation phase of the COVID-19 pandemic in which we find ourselves, it is, and will be, fundamental to correctly diagnose the illness. Furthermore, it is going to be vitally important to identify those persons who have recovered from the illness and its possible post-recovery consequences. Therefore, in barnaclinc+ we have designed various diagnostic […]
All barnaclínic+ services have reopened between May 11 and 20, and will gradually resume their normal activities. To guarantee the safety of both our patients and professionals, hygiene and disinfection measures have been taken, spaces have been adapted and protocols and paths have been redefined. If you have any questions about our opening hours and contacts, active services or security measures, you […]