Analysis of Fungal and Bacterial Co-Infections in Mortality Cases among Hospitalized Patients with COVID-19 in Taipei, Taiwan

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Abstract

Fungal or bacterial co-infections in patients with H1N1 influenza have already been reported in many studies. However, information on the risk factors, complications, and prognosis of mortality cases with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are limited. We aimed to assess 36 mortality cases of 178 hospitalized patients among 339 patients confirmed to have had SARS-CoV-2 infections in a medical center in the Wenshan District of Taipei, Taiwan, between January 2020 and September 2021. Of these 36 mortality cases, 20 (60%) were men, 28 (77.7%) were aged >65 years, and the median age was 76 (54–99) years. Comorbidities such as hypertension, coronary artery disease, and chronic kidney disease were more likely to be found in the group with length of stay (LOS) > 7 d. In addition, the laboratory data indicating elevated creatinine-phosphate-kinase (CPK) (p < 0.001) and lactic acid dehydrogenase (LDH) (p = 0.05), and low albumin (p < 0.01) levels were significantly related to poor prognosis and mortality. The respiratory pathogens of early co-infections (LOS < 7 d) in the rapid progression to death group (n = 7 patients) were two bacteria (22.2%) and seven Candida species (77.8.7%). In contrast, pathogens of late co-infections (LOS > 7 d) (n = 27 patients) were 20 bacterial (54.1%), 16 Candida (43.2%), and only 1 Aspergillus (2.7%) species. In conclusion, the risk factors related to COVID-19 mortality in the Wenshan District of Taipei, Taiwan, were old age, comorbidities, and abnormal biomarkers such as low albumin level and elevated CPK and LDH levels. Bacterial co-infections are more common with Gram-negative pathogens. However, fungal co-infections are relatively more common with Candida spp. than Aspergillus in mortality cases of COVID-19.

Original languageEnglish
Article number91
JournalJournal of Fungi
Volume8
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022

Keywords

  • Bacterial infections
  • Co-infections
  • COVID-19
  • Fungal infections
  • Mortality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Plant Science
  • Microbiology (medical)

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