Smell and taste alterations in COVID-19: a cross-sectional analysis of different cohorts.

Paderno A, Schreiber A, Grammatica A, Raffetti E, Tomasoni M, Gualtieri T, Taboni S, Zorzi S, Lombardi D, Deganello A, Redaelli De Zinis LO, Maroldi R, Mattavelli D

Int Forum Allergy Rhinol 10 (8) 955-962 [2020-08-00; online 2020-06-25]

Olfactory (OD) and gustatory (GD) dysfunction have been proven to be a typical symptom of severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. However, their prevalence in different patient populations still needs to be clarified. A cross-sectional study was performed from March 27 to April 1, 2020, in Northern Italy. Physicians administered a survey-based questionnaire to SARS-CoV-2-positive patients with the aim of assessing symptoms, focusing on OD and GD. Two groups were studied: group A, patients hospitalized at Azianda Socio Sanitaria Territoriale (ASST) Spedali Civili University Hospital of Brescia; and group B, home-quarantined subjects. A total of 508 patients were enrolled: 295 in group A and 213 in group B. Mean age ± standard deviation (SD) was 55 ± 15 years; 56% were men. Overall, OD and GD were present in 56% (95% confidence interval [CI], 51% to 60%) and 63% (95% CI, 59% to 67%) of cases, respectively. In group A, the prevalence of OD and GD was 44% (95% CI, 38% to 50%) and 52% (95% CI, 46% to 58%), respectively. In group B, the prevalence of OD and GD was 72% (95% CI, 65% to 79%) and 79% (95% CI, 73% to 84%), respectively. In the entire cohort, total loss of olfaction and taste was reported in 64% and 60% of cases, respectively. OD and GD occurred as the first symptom in 10% and 11% of cases, respectively; in the remaining cases, they occurred after a mean of 4 ± 3 days following the first symptom. At the time of the questionnaire, complete resolution of OD and GD was reported in 52% and 55% of cases, respectively (mean duration, 9 ± 5 days in both). OD and GD are more prevalent in home-quarantined subjects, and they are independently associated with younger age and female gender.

Category: Health

Type: Journal article

PubMed 32410386

DOI 10.1002/alr.22610

Crossref 10.1002/alr.22610

pmc: PMC7272886

Publications 7.1.2