Pulmonary Thromboembolism in COVID-19: Initial Experience from India
Dr. Sohan Kumar Sharma,
SMS Medical College, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India.
Pulmonary thromboembolic complications are increasingly being recognised in Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) infections. Most of the cases of Pulmonary Embolism (PE) are often missed in presence of non-specific symptoms. The present report is about a 90-year-old COVID-19 positive male, asymptomatic on presentation, with no prior co-morbidities who developed acute onset shortness of breath along with elevated D-dimer levels four days post admission. Subsequently, a Computed Tomography Pulmonary Angiogram (CTPA) was done which revealed segmental and sub-segmental thromboembolism in upper and middle lobar branches of right pulmonary artery along with bilateral lower lobe ground-glass opacities consistent with COVID-19 pneumonia. As the patient was haemodynamically stable, he was managed conservatively on low molecular weight heparin and subsequently discharged on oral anti-coagulants. This report highlights the need for prompt evaluation of symptoms such as dyspnoea in COVID-19 patients and to rule out thromboembolic complications in them. In resource limited countries such as India with most of the COVID-19 centres having limited access to CT scans, triaging patients based on clinical suspicion and serially rising D-dimer levels may help identify those with thromboembolic complications.