Evolution of COVID-19 infection characteristics in a Lebanese cohort of inpatients during different pandemic periods

Pathog Glob Health. 2023 Jul 23:1-10. doi: 10.1080/20477724.2023.2239492. Online ahead of print.


This study aims to describe COVID-19 patients characteristics, laboratory and imaging results, and the different outcomes of patients admitted to the Lebanese American University Medical Center-Rizk Hospital over a period of 9 months. In this observational retrospective study, data were obtained from electronic medical records of 491 male and female patients from the ages of 17 to 97. Analysis of the patients was performed in 3 periods: August 2020 to October 20 November 202020 to January 2021 and February 2021 to April 2021 corresponding with 3 waves of newly diagnosed cases during this period. The sample showed a male predominance with an average age of 63. The average hospitalization length was 10.1 days. The majority of patients were discharged to quarantine. The distribution of hospitalized cases was significantly correlated to the monthly distribution of newly COVID-19 cases in Lebanon. There was no significant difference in patient's characteristics between the 3 periods of the study (gender, age, body mass index, smoking, and medical conditions). Clinical presentations of the patients varied between the 3 periods. Similarly, the course and outcome of infection varied. Patients received less oxygen during period 1, while more patients were cured during period 3. This study presents the first Lebanese cohort of COVID-19 patients with their medical background, clinical presentation, laboratory results, radiological findings and course of infection with its outcome. It also shows how the relations between the medical manifestation of the COVID-19 pandemic and the socio-political measures of infection control are deeply intertwined.

Keywords: Coronavirus disease 2019; infection; observational study.