U.S. scientists have reported two stages in the course of a severe form of COVID-19. A corresponding study by doctors describing the deaths of patients was published in the scientific journal Nature Communications.
To analyze the effects of the coronavirus on the body, specialists at Massachusetts General Hospital studied the described autopsy materials of 24 patients who died from COVID-19. As a result of their detailed review of the data, they were able to visualize the location of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the lung samples of those who had the coronavirus.
Based on the data, scientists found that there are two stages of severe coronavirus. The early phase is defined by high levels of virus in the lungs, causing the body to stimulate the expression of genes necessary to trigger an immune response. In the late phase, there is little or no trace of the virus, but the likelihood of a fatal outcome remains extremely high. This is due to the high degree of damage to the lungs.
The course of severe COVID-19 can vary from person to person, according to doctors. “The body’s response to the virus can be unique even in different parts of the same lung,” said study author Dr. David T. Ting. The experts also found that the use of antiviral drugs – for example, remdesivir – can be effective only at the early stage of the disease.
Earlier, Russian doctors evaluated the impact of coronavirus on the life expectancy of a patient. According to immunologist-allergologist Vladimir Bolibok, life expectancy of COVID-19 survivors may be shortened if the patient develops various chronic diseases.