Hellgren L, Levi R, Divanoglou A, Birberg-Thornberg U, Samuelsson K
J Rehabil Med - (-) - [2022-06-09; online 2022-06-09]
Objectives To identify domains of persisting problems at 4 months after discharge in patients previously hospitalized due to COVID-19, with focus on the subgroup of patients reporting symptoms to an extent indicative of rehabilitation needs. Design Ambidirectional observational cohort study. Patients All patients with a laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis admitted to hospital in a Swedish healthcare region during 1/03-31/05, 2020. After exclusion, 94% of all survivors (n=433) participated in the study. Forty-three percent (n=185) of these reported persisting problems indicating rehabilitation needs and formed a subgroup. Methods Explorative factor analysis based on results from comprehensive telephone interviews covering persisting symptoms, including assessment of impact in daily life. Results Seven domains were identified comprising problems related to vision, cognition, mental fatigue, swallowing, voice, sensorimotor dysfunction and feeling anxious/depressed. The patients in the subgroup reported a median of 8 symptoms/limitations affecting everyday life, and two thirds reported symptoms/limitations in three or more domains. Conclusions Seven problem domains corresponding to specific modalities of rehabilitative interventions were identified. As a majority of patients reported problems from several domains, multiprofessional teams in post-COVID-19 rehabilitation is implicated. Screening of patients previously hospitalized due to COVID-19 should cover all seven domains.