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In Radiology. Cardiothoracic imaging

Purpose : To examine the independent and incremental value of CT-derived quantitative burden and attenuation of COVID-19 pneumonia for the prediction of clinical deterioration or death.

Methods : This was a retrospective analysis of a prospective international registry of consecutive patients with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 and chest CT imaging, admitted to four centers between January 10 and May 6, 2020. Total burden (expressed as a percentage) and mean attenuation of ground glass opacities (GGO) and consolidation were quantified from CT using semi-automated research software. The primary outcome was clinical deterioration (intensive care unit admission, invasive mechanical ventilation, or vasopressor therapy) or in-hospital death. Logistic regression was performed to assess the predictive value of clinical and CT parameters for the primary outcome.

Results : The final population comprised 120 patients (mean age 64 ± 16 years, 78 men), of whom 39 (32.5%) experienced clinical deterioration or death. In multivariable regression of clinical and CT parameters, consolidation burden (odds ratio [OR], 3.4; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.7, 6.9 per doubling; P = .001) and increasing GGO attenuation (OR, 3.2; 95% CI: 1.3, 8.3 per standard deviation, P = .02) were independent predictors of deterioration or death; as was C-reactive protein (OR, 2.1; 95% CI: 1.3, 3.4 per doubling; P = .004), history of heart failure (OR 1.3; 95% CI: 1.1, 1.6, P = .01), and chronic lung disease (OR, 1.3; 95% CI: 1.0, 1.6; P = .02). Quantitative CT measures added incremental predictive value beyond a model with only clinical parameters (area under the curve, 0.93 vs 0.82, P = .006). The optimal prognostic cutoffs for burden of COVID-19 pneumonia as determined by Youden's index were consolidation of greater than or equal to 1.8% and GGO of greater than or equal to 13.5%.

Conclusions : Quantitative burden of consolidation or GGO on chest CT independently predict clinical deterioration or death in patients with COVID-19 pneumonia. CT-derived measures have incremental prognostic value over and above clinical parameters, and may be useful for risk stratifying patients with COVID-19.

Grodecki Kajetan, Lin Andrew, Cadet Sebastien, McElhinney Priscilla A, Razipour Aryabod, Chan Cato, Pressman Barry, Julien Peter, Maurovich-Horvat Pal, Gaibazzi Nicola, Thakur Udit, Mancini Elisabetta, Agalbato Cecilia, Menè Roberto, Parati Gianfranco, Cernigliaro Franco, Nerlekar Nitesh, Torlasco Camilla, Pontone Gianluca, Slomka Piotr J, Dey Damini