Cardiovascular complications in COVID-19

Am J Emerg Med. 2020 Jul;38(7):1504-1507. doi: 10.1016/j.ajem.2020.04.048. Epub 2020 Apr 18.


Background: The coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19) is caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). While systemic inflammation and pulmonary complications can result in significant morbidity and mortality, cardiovascular complications may also occur.

Objective: This brief report evaluates cardiovascular complications in the setting of COVID-19 infection.

Discussion: The current COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in over one million infected worldwide and thousands of death. The virus binds and enters through angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2). COVID-19 can result in systemic inflammation, multiorgan dysfunction, and critical illness. The cardiovascular system is also affected, with complications including myocardial injury, myocarditis, acute myocardial infarction, heart failure, dysrhythmias, and venous thromboembolic events. Current therapies for COVID-19 may interact with cardiovascular medications.

Conclusions: Emergency clinicians should be aware of these cardiovascular complications when evaluating and managing the patient with COVID-19.

Keywords: Acute myocardial infarction; COVID-19; Cardiovascular; Dysrhythmia; Heart failure; Infectious disease; Myocarditis; Troponin.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / pathology
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / virology
  • Betacoronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / pathology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / virology
  • Coronavirus Infections / immunology
  • Heart Failure / pathology
  • Heart Failure / virology
  • Humans
  • Myocarditis / pathology
  • Myocarditis / virology
  • Pandemics
  • Pneumonia, Viral / immunology
  • SARS-CoV-2