Longitudinal association between markers of liver injury and mortality in COVID‐19 in China
Lei, Fang et al.
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Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID‐19) is a new infectious disease. To reveal the hepatic injury related to this disease and its clinical significance, we conducted a multicenter retrospective cohort study that included 5,771 adult patients with COVID‐19 pneumonia in Hubei Province. We reported the distributional and temporal patterns of liver injury indicators in these patients and determined their associated factors and death risk. Longitudinal liver function tests were retrospectively analyzed and correlated with the risk factors and death. Liver injury dynamic patterns differed in alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), and total bilirubin (TBIL). AST elevated first, followed by ALT, in severe patients. ALP modestly increased during hospitalization and largely remained in the normal range. The fluctuation in TBIL levels was mild in the non‐severe and the severe group. AST abnormality was associated with the highest mortality risk compared to other indicators of liver injury during hospitalization. Common factors associated with elevated liver injury indicators were lymphocyte count decrease, neutrophil count increase, and male gender. Conclusion: The dynamic patterns of liver injury indicators and their potential risk factors may provide an important explanation for the COVID‐19‐associated liver injury. Because elevated liver injury indicators, particularly AST, are strongly associated with the mortality risk, our study indicates that these parameters should be monitored during hospitalization.