Characteristics and conflicting recommendations of clinical practice guidelines for COVID-19 management in children: A scoping review
Travel medicine and infectious disease. 2022;48:102354
BACKGROUND Clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) are statements that should be rigorously developed to guide clinicians' decision-making. However, given the scarce evidence for certain vulnerable groups like children, CPGs' recommendations formulation could be challenging. METHODS We conducted a scoping review of CPGs for COVID-19 management in children. Documents were included if they claimed to be a "clinical practice guideline", published between January and October 2021, and described the process followed to issue their recommendations. We assessed the quality using the "Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation II" (AGREE-II) and described how the recommendations were reached. RESULTS We found five CPGs that fulfilled our inclusion criteria. The median score on the overall AGREE-II evaluation was 61% (range: 49%-72%), and the score on the third domain referred to the rigor of methodological development was 52% (range: 25%-88%). Recommendations for remdesivir, tocilizumab, and intravenous immunoglobulin were heterogeneous across CPGs (in favor, against, no recommendation), as well as the methodologies used to present the evidence, perform the benefits/harms balance, and issue the recommendation. CONCLUSIONS Heterogeneous recommendations and justifications across CPGs were found in the three assessed topics. Future CPGs should describe in detail their evidence-to-decision process to issue reliable and transparent recommendations.
The emerging threat of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in adults (MIS-A) in COVID-19: A systematic review
Heart & lung : the journal of critical care. 2022;54:7-18
BACKGROUND The exact prevalence of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Adults (MIS-A) is largely unknown. Vague and multiple definitions and treatment options often add to the confusion on how to label the diagnosis with certainty. OBJECTIVES The objective of the study was to determine the demographic profile, clinical presentation, laboratory findings and outcomes of MIS-A in COVID-19. METHODS A systematic review was conducted after registering with PROSPERO. Multiple databases were systematically searched to encompass studies characterizing MIS-A from 1st January 2020 up to 31st August 2021. The inclusion criteria were- to incorporate all published or in press peer-reviewed articles reporting cases of MIS-A. We accepted the following types of studies: case reports, case-control, case series, cross-sectional studies and letters to the editors that incorporated clinical, laboratory, imaging, as well as the hospital course of MIS-A patients. The exclusion criteria for the review were- articles not in English, only abstracts published, no data on MIS-A and articles which have focus on COVID-19, and not MIS-A. Two independent authors screened the articles, extracted the data, and assessed the risk of bias. RESULTS A total of 53 articles were included in this review with a sample size of 79 cases. Majority of the patients were males (73.4%) with mean age of 31.67±10.02 years. Fever (100%) and skin rash (57.8%) were the two most common presenting symptoms. Echocardiographic data was available for 73 patients of whom 41 (73.2%) had reduced left ventricular ejection fraction. Cardiovascular system was most frequently involved (81%) followed by gastrointestinal (73.4%) and mucocutaneous (51.9%) involvement. Anti-inflammatory therapies used in treatment included steroids (60.2%), intravenous immunoglobulin (37.2%) and biologics (10.2%). Mean duration of the hospital stay was 11.67±8.08 days. Data regarding the outcomes was available for all 79 subjects of whom 4 (5.1%) died during course of hospital stay. CONCLUSIONS Emergence of MIS-A calls for further large-scale studies to establish standard case definitions and definite treatment guidelines.
Clinical symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and outcome of COVID-19-associated encephalitis: A systematic review of case reports and case series
Journal of clinical laboratory analysis. 2022;:e24426
INTRODUCTION Since COVID-19 outbreak, various studies mentioned the occurrence of neurological disorders. Of these, encephalitis is known as a critical neurological complication in COVID-19 patients. Numerous case reports and case series have found encephalitis in relation to COVID-19, which have not been systematically reviewed. This study aims to evaluate the clinical symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and outcome of COVID-19-associated encephalitis. METHODS We used the Pubmed/Medline, Embase, and Web of Science databases to search for reports on COVID-19-associated encephalitis from January 1, 2019, to March 7, 2021. The irrelevant studies were excluded based on screening and further evaluation. Then, the information relating diagnosis, treatment, clinical manifestations, comorbidities, and outcome was extracted and evaluated. RESULTS From 4455 initial studies, 45 articles met our criteria and were selected for further evaluation. Included publications reported an overall number of 53 COVID-19-related encephalitis cases. MRI showed hyperintensity of brain regions including white matter (44.68%), temporal lobe (17.02%), and thalamus (12.76%). Also, brain CT scan revealed the hypodensity of the white matter (17.14%) and cerebral hemorrhages/hemorrhagic foci (11.42%) as the most frequent findings. The IV methylprednisolone/oral prednisone (36.11%), IV immunoglobulin (27.77%), and acyclovir (16.66%) were more preferred for COVID-19 patients with encephalitis. From the 46 patients, 13 (28.26%) patients were died in the hospital. CONCLUSION In this systematic review, characteristics of COVID-19-associated encephalitis including clinical symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and outcome were described. COVID-19-associated encephalitis can accompany with other neurological symptoms and involve different brain. Although majority of encephalitis condition are reversible, but it can lead to life-threatening status. Therefore, further investigation of COVID-19-associated encephalitis is required.
Post COVID-19 pulmonary fibrosis; a meta-analysis study
Annals of medicine and surgery (2012). 2022;77:103590
Introduction; Pulmonary fibrosis is a frequently reported COVID-19 sequela in which the exact prevalence and risk factors are yet to be established. This meta-analysis aims to investigate the prevalence of post-COVID-19 pulmonary fibrosis (PCPF) and the potential risk factors. Methods; CINAHL, PubMed/MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, Web of Science, and EMBASE databases were searched to identify English language studies published up to December 3, 2021. Results; The systematic search initially revealed a total of 618 articles - of which only 13 studies reporting 2018 patients were included in this study. Among the patients, 1047 (51.9%) were male and 971 (48.1%) were female. The mean age was 54.5 years (15-94). The prevalence of PCPF was 44.9%. The mean age was 59 years in fibrotic patients and 48.5 years in non-fibrotic patients. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease was the only comorbidity associated with PCPF. Fibrotic patients more commonly suffered from persistent symptoms of dyspnea, cough, chest pain, fatigue, and myalgia (p-value < 0.05). Factors related to COVID-19 severity that were associated with PCPF development included computed tomography score of ≥18, ICU admission, invasive/non-invasive mechanical ventilation, longer hospitalization period, and steroid, antibiotic and immunoglobulin treatments (p-value < 0.05). Parenchymal bands (284/341), ground-glass opacities (552/753), interlobular septal thickening (220/381), and consolidation (197/319) were the most common lung abnormalities found in fibrotic patients. Conclusion, About 44.9% of COVID-19 survivors appear to have developed pulmonary fibrosis. Factors related to COVID-19 severity were significantly associated with PCPF development.
IVIG plus Glucocorticoids versus IVIG Alone in Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) Associated with COVID-19: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
The Canadian journal of infectious diseases & medical microbiology = Journal canadien des maladies infectieuses et de la microbiologie medicale. 2022;2022:9458653
BACKGROUND There is limited information available regarding the management of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) associated with SARS-CoV-2. We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to evaluate the optimal treatment using IVIG alone versus IVIG plus glucocorticoids. METHODS PubMed, Google Scholar, EMBASE, and Cochrane databases were searched along with other secondary searches. Studies published within the time frame of January 2020 to August 2021 were included. We screened records, extracted data, and assessed the quality of the studies using NOS. Studies that directly compare the two treatment groups were included. Analyses were conducted using the random-effects model (DerSimonian-Laird analysis) if I (2) > 50% and fixed-effects model was used if I (2) < 50%. RESULTS We included three studies in the final quantitative analysis. The initial therapy with the IVIG plus glucocorticoids group significantly lowered the risk of treatment failure (OR 0.57, 95% CI (0.42, 0.79), I (2) 45.36%) and the need for adjunctive immunomodulatory therapy (OR 0.27, 95% CI (0.20, 0.37), I (2) 0.0%). The combination therapy showed no significant reduction in occurrence of left ventricular dysfunction (OR 0.79, 95% CI (0.34, 1.87), I (2) 58.44%) and the need for inotropic support (OR 0.83, 95% CI (0.35, 1.99), I (2) 75.40%). CONCLUSION This study supports the use of IVIG with glucocorticoids compared to IVIG alone, as the combination therapy significantly lowered the risk of treatment failure and the need for adjunctive immunomodulatory therapy.
Intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) therapy in hospitalised adult COVID-19 patients: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Reviews in medical virology. 2022;:e2397
Intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) therapy has been suggested as a potential treatment option for hospitalised COVID-19 patients. The aim of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to investigate the potential impact of IVIg on mortality and length of hospitalisation in adult COVID-19 patients. PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science and medRxiv were searched in the week of 20.12.2021 for English language, prospective trials, and retrospective studies with control groups, reporting on the use of intravenous immunoglobulin therapy in adult hospitalised COVID-19 patients. Exclusion criteria were: studies evaluating the use of IVIg in paediatric COVID-19 cases, trials using convalescent anti-SARS-CoV-2 plasma or immunoglobulins derived from convalescent anti-SARS-CoV-2 plasma. A random effects meta-analysis with subgroup analyses regarding study design and patient disease severity according to WHO criteria was also performed. A total of 13 studies were included, of which 6 were prospective, on a total of 2313 (IVIg = 1104, control = 1209) patient outcomes. Meta-analysis results indicated that IVIg therapy had no statistically significant effect on mortality (RR 0.91 [0.59; 1.39], p = 0.65, I(2) = 69% [46%; 83%]) or length of hospital stay (MD 0.51 [-2.80; 3.81], p = 0.76, I(2) = 96% [94%; 98%]). Subgroup analyses indicated no statistically significant impact on either outcome, but prospective studies' results suggested that IVIg may increase the length of hospitalisation in the severe COVID-19 patient group (MD 2.66 [1.43; 3.90], p < 0.01, I(2) = 0% [0%; >90%]). The results of this meta-analysis do not support use of IVIg in hospitalised adult COVID-19 patients.
The effect of intravenous immunoglobulins on the outcomes of patients with COVID-19: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials
Expert review of anti-infective therapy. 2022;:1-8
OBJECTIVES Severe-to-critical COVID-19 has been associated with exaggerated immune responses, and anti-inflammatory agents including corticosteroid and interleukin-6 antagonist have been repurposed as the treatment modality against severe SARS-CoV-2 infections. However, the clinical efficacy and safety of intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) in the treatment of patients with COVID-19 was controversial. METHODS This meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) investigated the effectiveness of IVIG in patients with COVID-19. Electronic databases were searched for RCTs that compared the clinical efficacy of IVIG with standard of care or placebo in the hospitalized patients with COVID-19 were included. RESULTS Six RCTs involving 472 patients were included. Patients who received IVIG had a similar mortality rate to the controls (25.3% vs 27.0%, odds ratio [OR], 0.60; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.27-1.31). Compared with the control group, the study group demonstrated a similar incidence of receiving mechanical ventilation (OR, 0.70; 95% CI, 0.45-1.11), intensive care unit (ICU) admission (OR, 0.58; 95% CI, 0.22-1.53), length of hospital stay (mean difference [MD], -1.81 days; 95% CI, -8.42 to 4.81) and ICU stay (MD, -0.61 days; 95% CI, -2.80 to 1.58). CONCLUSIONS The administration of IVIG in hospitalized patients with COVID-19 does not improve clinical outcomes.
Hospitalised patients with COVID-19 (6 studies, n= 472).
Intravenous immunoglobulin IVIG (Study group).
Standard care or placebo (Control group).
Patients who received IVIG had a similar mortality rate compared to patients receiving standard care or placebo (25.3% vs. 27.0%). Compared with the Control group, the Study group demonstrated a similar incidence of receiving mechanical ventilation, intensive care unit (ICU) admission, length of hospital stay (mean difference (MD) -1.81 days) and ICU stay (MD -0.61 days).
Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome Temporally Related to COVID-19 in Children From Latin America and the Caribbean Region: A Systematic Review With a Meta-Analysis of Data From Regional Surveillance Systems
Frontiers in pediatrics. 2022;10:881765
BACKGROUND With the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic, increasing numbers of cases of the multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) have been reported worldwide; however, it is unclear whether this syndrome has a differential pattern in children from Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to analyze the epidemiological, clinical, and outcome characteristics of patients with MIS-C in LAC countries. METHODS A systematic literature search was conducted in the main electronic databases and scientific meetings from March 1, 2020, to June 30, 2021. Available reports on epidemiological surveillance of countries in the region during the same period were analyzed. RESULTS Of the 464 relevant studies identified, 23 were included with 592 patients with MIS-C from LAC. Mean age was 6.6 years (IQR, 6-7.4 years); 60% were male. The most common clinical manifestations were fever, rash, and conjunctival injection; 59% showed Kawasaki disease. Pool proportion of shock was 52%. A total of 47% of patients were admitted to the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU), 23% required mechanical ventilation, and 74% required vasoactive drugs. Intravenous gamma globulin alone was administered in 87% of patients, and in combination with steroids in 60% of cases. Length of hospital stay was 10 days (IQR, 9-10) and PICU stay 5.75 (IQR, 5-6). Overall case fatality ratio was 4% and for those hospitalized in the PICU it was 7%. CONCLUSION Limited information was available on the clinical outcomes. Improvements in the surveillance system are required to obtain a better epidemiologic overview in the region.
Potentially effective drugs for the treatment of COVID-19 or MIS-C in children: a systematic review
European journal of pediatrics. 2022;:1-12
The purpose of this systematic review is to evaluate the efficacy and safety of using potential drugs: remdesivir and glucocorticoid in treating children and adolescents with COVID-19 and intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) in treating MIS-C. We searched seven databases, three preprint platform, ClinicalTrials.gov, and Google from December 1, 2019, to August 5, 2021, to collect evidence of remdesivir, glucocorticoid, and IVIG which were used in children and adolescents with COVID-19 or MIS-C. A total of nine cohort studies and one case series study were included in this systematic review. In terms of remdesivir, the meta-analysis of single-arm cohort studies have shown that after the treatment, 54.7% (95%CI, 10.3 to 99.1%) experienced adverse events, 5.6% (95%CI, 1.2 to 10.1%) died, and 27.0% (95%CI, 0 to 73.0%) needed extracorporeal membrane oxygenation or invasive mechanical ventilation. As for glucocorticoids, the results of the meta-analysis showed that the fixed-effect summary odds ratio for the association with mortality was 2.79 (95%CI, 0.13 to 60.87), and the mechanical ventilation rate was 3.12 (95%CI, 0.80 to 12.08) for glucocorticoids compared with the control group. In terms of IVIG, most of the included cohort studies showed that for MIS-C patients with more severe clinical symptoms, IVIG combined with methylprednisolone could achieve better clinical efficacy than IVIG alone.Conclusions: Overall, the current evidence in the included studies is insignificant and of low quality. It is recommended to conduct high-quality randomized controlled trials of remdesivir, glucocorticoids, and IVIG in children and adolescents with COVID-19 or MIS-C to provide substantial evidence for the development of guidelines. What is Known: • The efficacy and safety of using potential drugs such as remdesivir, glucocorticoid, and intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) in treating children and adolescents with COVID-19/MIS-C are unclear. What is New: • Overall, the current evidence cannot adequately demonstrate the effectiveness and safety of using remdesivir, glucocorticoids, and IVIG in treating children and adolescents with COVID-19 or MIS-C. • We are calling for the publication of high-quality clinical trials and provide substantial evidence for the development of guidelines.
COVID-19 associated vasculitis: A systematic review of case reports and case series
Annals of medicine and surgery (2012). 2022;:103249
Vasculitis is one of the complications of COVID-19. We conducted a systematic review analysing the association of COVID-19 with vasculitis. We searched Google Scholar and PubMed from December 1, 2019, to October 11, 2021. The review included 8 studies (7 case reports and 1 case series) reporting 9 cases of vasculitis secondary to COVID-19. The mean age was 29.17 ± 28.2 years, ranging from 6 months to 83 years. The male to female ratio was 4:5. Maculopapular, violaceous, papular and erythematous rash were common. Heparin(n = 2), corticosteroids (n = 6) (methylprednisolone) and intravenous immunoglobulin (n = 4) were prescribed in these patients. Significant clinical improvement was observed in 8 out of 9 patients. One person died during treatment. Our study discusses vasculitis as one of the complications of COVID-19. Furthermore, the pathophysiology, clinical presentation, and management of COVID-19 associated vasculitis is discussed.