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Anchor lead: Damage to the heart may be one of the most serious of COVID-19 consequences, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Analysis of data from patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in Wuhan has detected evidence of heart damage in one in five, a study in JAMA Cardiology reports. Erin Michos, a cardiologist at Johns Hopkins, explains.

Michos: They evaluated hospitalized patients for COVID-19. The presence of cardiac injury that was detected by a blood test, cardiac troponin. Up to 20% of their patients had elevated levels of troponin and even after you took into account underlying disease, age, pre-existing coronary disease, diabetes, kidney disease, cancer, patients with this evidence of cardiac injury were four-fold more likely to die, this was a marker for more likely to die versus survive.  :30

Michos says this observation could have a range of clinical implications that may ultimately guide treatment, but for now what needs to be determined is why heart damage is taking place so strategic intervention is possible. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

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