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Open Access Coronavirus Pneumonia and Pulmonary Thromboembolism

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This article is Open Access under the terms of the Creative Commons CC BY-NC licence.


In 2019, a novel pneumonia, called coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), spread rapidly throughout the world. This novel global pandemic severely threatened public respiratory health and medical services. To date, except for the common respiratory symptoms, coagulation disorders, especially pulmonary thromboembolism (PTE), has been proven as an important complication in severe COVID-19 patients, and the incidence of PTE causes poor clinical outcome and increased fatality. Therefore, it is important that healthcare providers, including respiratory physicians, emergency medicine specialists, hematologists, cardiologists, infectious disease specialists, and other specialists, recognize that patients with COVID-19 are at increased risk of PTE, and ensure that appropriate prophylaxis is administered to the appropriate patients, and that they effectively manage PTE when it does occur. The mechanism of PTE in patients with coronavirus pneumonia consists of endothelial injury, activated platelet, cytokine storm, and a suppressed fibrinolytic system. Early prophylaxis, antiviral therapy, anticoagulation, and supportive treatment are beneficial to COVID-19 patients. In this review, we summarize the harm that coronavirus pneumonia wreaks and highlight the clinical relationship between PTE and coronavirus infection. The potential mechanism and the prophylaxis and therapeutic measures are also discussed to call for more effort and research to investigate the strategies for PTE in COVID-19.

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Keywords: COVID-19; Coronavirus pneumonia; pulmonary thromboembolism

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Respiratory Medicine, Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510120, People’s Republic of China 2: Guangdong Key Laboratory of Malignant Tumor Epigenetics and Gene Regulation, Medical Research Center, Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510120, People’s Republic of China

Publication date: January 1, 2021

This article was made available online on December 8, 2020 as a Fast Track article with title: "Coronavirus Pneumonia and Pulmonary Thromboembolism".

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