COVID-19 in German Competitive Sports: Protocol for a Prospective Multicenter Cohort Study (CoSmo-S)

Int J Public Health. 2022 Feb 7;67:1604414. doi: 10.3389/ijph.2022.1604414. eCollection 2022.


Objective: It is unclear whether and to what extent COVID-19 infection poses health risks and a chronic impairment of performance in athletes. Identification of individual health risk is an important decision-making basis for managing the pandemic risk of infection with SARS-CoV-2 in sports and return to play (RTP). Methods: This study aims 1) to analyze the longitudinal rate of seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 in German athletes, 2) to assess health-related consequences in athletes infected with SARS-CoV-2, and 3) to reveal effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in general and of a cleared SARS-CoV-2 infection on exercise performance. CoSmo-S is a prospective observational multicenter study establishing two cohorts: 1) athletes diagnosed positive for COVID-19 (cohort 1) and 2) federal squad athletes who perform their annual sports medical preparticipation screening (cohort 2). Comprehensive diagnostics including physical examination, laboratory blood analyses and blood biobanking, resting and exercise electrocardiogram (ECG), echocardiography, spirometry and exercise testing added by questionnaires are conducted at baseline and follow-up. Results and Conclusion: We expect that the results obtained, will allow us to formulate recommendations regarding RTP on a more evidence-based level.

Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; athletes; exercise; myocarditis; return to sport.

MeSH terms

  • Biological Specimen Banks
  • COVID-19*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Humans
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic
  • Observational Studies as Topic
  • Pandemics
  • Prospective Studies
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Seroepidemiologic Studies