Imaging Features of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19): Evaluation on Thin-Section CT

Acad Radiol. 2020 May;27(5):609-613. doi: 10.1016/j.acra.2020.03.002. Epub 2020 Mar 20.


Rationale and objectives: To retrospectively analyze the chest imaging findings in patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on thin-section CT.

Materials and methods: Fifty-three patients with confirmed COVID-19 infection underwent thin-section CT examination. Two chest radiologists independently evaluated the imaging in terms of distribution, ground-glass opacity (GGO), consolidation, air bronchogram, stripe, enlarged mediastinal lymph node, and pleural effusion.

Results: Fourty-seven cases (88.7%) had findings of COVID-19 infection, and the other six (11.3%) were normal. Among the 47 cases, 78.7% involved both lungs, and 93.6% had peripheral infiltrates distributed along the subpleural area. All cases showed GGO, 59.6% of which were round and 40.4% patchy. Other imaging features included "crazy-paving pattern" (89.4%), consolidation (63.8%), and air bronchogram (76.6%). Air bronchograms were observed within GGO (61.7%) and consolidation (70.3%). Neither enlarged mediastinal lymph nodes nor pleural effusion were present. Thirty-three patients (62.3%) were followed an average interval of 6.2 ± 2.9 days. The lesions increased in 75.8% and resorbed in 24.2% of patients.

Conclusion: COVID-19 showed the pulmonary lesions in patients infected with COVID-19 were predominantly distributed peripherally in the subpleural area.

Keywords: Coronavirus; Lung; Multidetector computed tomography; Pneumonia.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • COVID-19
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Coronavirus Infections / diagnostic imaging*
  • Disease Progression
  • Early Diagnosis
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Lung / diagnostic imaging*
  • Lung / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multidetector Computed Tomography / methods*
  • Pandemics
  • Pneumonia, Viral / diagnostic imaging*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Young Adult