Nevin Manimala Statistics

Does pre-existing immunity determine the course of SARS-CoV-2 infection in health-care workers? Single-center experience

Infection. 2022 Jun 13. doi: 10.1007/s15010-022-01859-y. Online ahead of print.


OBJECTIVES: To assess the severity of symptoms, duration of infection and viral loads of health-care workers (HCWs) who tested positive for Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) during Omicron’s prevalence, in regard to vaccination and previous infection.

METHODS: During 2 weeks of highest rate of COVID-19 cases in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the positive nasopharyngeal swabs were analysed in 141 HCWs by reverse transcription quantitative PCR, targeting four different genes: RdRp, E, N and nsp14. Uniformed questionnaire was used to collect relevant sociodemographic and epidemiological data from HCWs divided into four groups: unvaccinated/not previously infected (group 1); unvaccinated/previously infected (group 2); vaccinated/not previously infected (group 3); and vaccinated/previously infected (group 4).

RESULTS: We observed that occurrence of fever and smell or taste loss were more frequent in group 1 (86.4% and 25%) and group 3 (76.9% and 19.2%), in comparison to group 2 (64.4% and 6.7%) and group 4 (69.2% and 3.8%), (p = 0.023 and p = 0.003). Although statistically not significant, group 2 (61.9%), group 3 (65.4%), and group 4 (70.8%) experienced negativization within 7 days of positive RT-qPCR test, whereas 51.2% of HCWs from group 1 tested negative later on. There is no significant difference between all four groups regarding Ct values of analysed genes.

CONCLUSION: During Omicron’s prevalence, the vaccination had less substantial effect on symptomatic disease among HCWs, while fever and loss of smell or taste were considerably less likely to occur upon reinfection. Since viral loads and negativization periods do not seem to significantly vary, irrespective of pre-existing immunity, systemic vaccination and mask-wearing should still be considered among HCWs.

PMID:35696057 | DOI:10.1007/s15010-022-01859-y

By Nevin Manimala

Portfolio Website for Nevin Manimala