Background and objective: The effects of corticosteroid treatment on non-severe COVID-19 pneumonia patients are unknown. To determine the impacts of adjuvant corticosteroid administrated to patients with non-severe COVID-19 pneumonia.
Method: A retrospective cohort study based on propensity score analysis was designed to explore the effects of corticosteroid on several clinical outcomes.
Results: One hundred thirty-two patients satisfied the inclusion criteria and 35 pairs were generated according to propensity score matching. Compared to non-corticosteroid group, the CT score on day 7 was significantly higher in corticosteroid group (8.6 (interquartile range [IQR], 2.8-11.5) versus 12.0 (IQR, 5.0-19.3), P = 0.046). In corticosteroid group, more patients progressed to severe cases (11.4% versus 2.9%, P = 0.353), hospital stay (23.5 days (IQR, 19-29 d) versus 20.2 days (IQR, 14-25.3 d), P = 0.079) and duration of viral shedding (20.3 days (IQR, 15.2-24.8 d) versus 19.4 days (IQR, 11.5-28.3 d), P = 0.669) were prolonged, while fever time (9.5 days (IQR, 6.5-12.2 d) versus 10.2 days (IQR, 6.8-14 d), P = 0.28) was shortened; however, all these data revealed no statistically significant differences.
Conclusion: Corticosteroid might have a negative effect on lung injury recovery in non-severe COVID-19 pneumonia patients; however, the results of this study must be interpreted with caution because of confounding factors.