COVID-19 in a Patient Presenting with Syncope and a Normal Chest X-ray

R I Med J (2013). 2020 Mar 26;103(3):50-51.


SARS-CoV-2 is a novel virus that has now affected hundreds of thousands of individuals across the world. Amidst this global pandemic, maintaining a high index of suspicion, rapid testing capacity, and infection control measures are required to curtail the virus' rapid spread. While fever and respiratory symptoms have been commonly used to identify COVID-19 suspects, we present an elderly female who arrived to the hospital after a syncopal episode. She was afebrile with a normal chest X-ray and there was no suspicion of COVID-19. She then developed a fever and tested positive for COVID-19. Our unique case underscores the increasing diversity of COVID-19 presentations and potential for initial mis- diagnosis and delay in implementing proper precautions.

Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; chest radiograph; imaging; isolation precautions; syncope.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Betacoronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • COVID-19 Testing
  • Clinical Laboratory Techniques
  • Coronavirus Infections* / complications
  • Coronavirus Infections* / diagnosis
  • Diagnostic Errors
  • Female
  • Fever / etiology
  • Humans
  • Pandemics*
  • Pneumonia, Viral* / complications
  • Pneumonia, Viral* / diagnosis
  • Radiography, Thoracic*
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Syncope / etiology*