Background & aims: Some patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection have abnormal liver function. We aimed to clarify the features of COVID-19-related liver damage to provide references for clinical treatment.
Methods: We performed a retrospective, single-center study of 148 consecutive patients with confirmed COVID-19 (73 female, 75 male; mean age, 50 years) at the Shanghai Public Health Clinical Center from January 20 through January 31, 2020. Patient outcomes were followed until February 19, 2020. Patients were analyzed for clinical features, laboratory parameters (including liver function tests), medications, and length of hospital stay. Abnormal liver function was defined as increased levels of alanine and aspartate aminotransferase, gamma glutamyltransferase, alkaline phosphatase, and total bilirubin.
Results: Fifty-five patients (37.2%) had abnormal liver function at hospital admission; 14.5% of these patients had high fever (14.5%), compared with 4.3% of patients with normal liver function (P = .027). Patients with abnormal liver function were more likely to be male, and had higher levels of procalcitonin and C-reactive protein. There was no statistical difference between groups in medications taken before hospitalization; a significantly higher proportion of patients with abnormal liver function (57.8%) had received lopinavir/ritonavir after admission compared to patients with normal liver function (31.3%). Patients with abnormal liver function had longer mean hospital stays (15.09 ± 4.79 days) than patients with normal liver function (12.76 ± 4.14 days) (P = .021).
Conclusions: More than one third of patients admitted to the hospital with SARS-CoV-2 infection have abnormal liver function, and this is associated with longer hospital stay. A significantly higher proportion of patients with abnormal liver function had received lopinavir/ritonavir after admission; these drugs should be given with caution.
Keywords: ALP; Antiviral Drug; Liver Injury; Prognosis.
Copyright © 2020 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.