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In Einstein (Sao Paulo, Brazil)

OBJECTIVE : To evaluate the role of chest computed tomography in patients with COVID-19 who presented initial negative result in reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).

METHODS : A single-center, retrospective study that evaluated 39 patients with negative RT-PCR for COVID-19, who underwent chest computed tomography and had a final clinical or serological diagnosis of COVID-19. The visual tomographic classification was evaluated according to the Consensus of the Radiological Society of North America and software developed with artificial intelligence for automatic detection of findings and chance estimation of COVID-19.

RESULTS : In the visual tomographic analysis, only one of them (3%) presented computed tomography classified as negative, 69% were classified as typical and 28% as indeterminate. In the evaluation using the software, only four (about 10%) had a probability of COVID-19 <25%.

CONCLUSION : Computed tomography can play an important role in management of suspected cases of COVID-19 with initial negative results in RT-PCR, especially considering those patients outside the ideal window for sample collection for RT-PCR.

Fonseca Eduardo Kaiser Ururahy Nunes, Ferreira Lorena Carneiro, Loureiro Bruna Melo Coelho, Strabelli Daniel Giunchetti, Farias Lucas de Pádua Gomes de, Queiroz Gabriel Abrantes de, Garcia José Vitor Rassi, Teixeira Renato de Freitas, Gama Victor Arcanjo Almeida, Chate Rodrigo Caruso, Assunção Júnior Antonildes Nascimento, Sawamura Márcio Valente Yamada, Nomura Cesar Higa