Last reviewed: 7 Jan 2023
Last updated: 08 Dec 2022

Summary

Definition

History and exam

Key diagnostic factors

  • fever
  • cough
  • dyspnoea
  • altered sense of smell/taste

Other diagnostic factors

  • fatigue
  • myalgia or arthralgia
  • sore throat
  • headache
  • rhinorrhoea or nasal congestion
  • sneezing
  • expectoration
  • chest pain/tightness
  • malaise
  • dizziness
  • confusion or delirium
  • gastrointestinal symptoms
  • cutaneous symptoms
  • ocular symptoms
  • signs of pneumonia or acute respiratory distress
  • haemoptysis
  • audio-vestibular symptoms
  • oral mucosal lesions

Risk factors

  • contact with probable or confirmed case
  • residence/work in location with high risk of transmission
  • older age
  • male sex
  • ethnicity
  • residence in a long-term care facility
  • presence of comorbidities
  • obesity
  • cardiovascular disease
  • diabetes
  • chronic respiratory disease
  • chronic kidney disease
  • chronic liver disease
  • pregnancy
  • smoking
  • malignancy
  • cerebrovascular disease
  • mental health disorders
  • solid organ or blood stem cell transplant
  • disabilities
  • dementia
  • immunosuppression
  • HIV infection
  • physical inactivity
  • haemoglobin disorders
  • hypertension
  • substance use disorders
  • children with certain underlying conditions
  • vitamin D deficiency
  • proton-pump inhibitor use
  • autoimmune disease
  • thyroid disease
  • Parkinson's disease
  • gout
  • dyslipidaemia
  • surgery
  • blood groups A and B
  • gut dysbiosis
  • environmental factors

Diagnostic investigations

1st investigations to order

  • real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR)
  • rapid antigen test
  • pulse oximetry
  • ABG
  • FBC
  • comprehensive metabolic panel
  • thyroid function tests
  • blood glucose level
  • coagulation screen
  • cardiac biomarkers
  • serum C-reactive protein
  • serum erythrocyte sedimentation rate
  • serum lactate dehydrogenase
  • serum interleukin (IL) level
  • serum procalcitonin
  • serum ferritin level
  • serum amyloid A level
  • serum creatine kinase and myoglobin
  • blood and sputum cultures
  • chest x-ray

Investigations to consider

  • computed tomography (CT) chest
  • lung ultrasound
  • serology

Treatment algorithmPage Error | BMJ Best Practice

Sorry for the delay!

We are currently experiencing technical problems with this site.

Our technical team is working hard to resolve this, and we will be back up and running as soon as we possibly can.

Return to the home page

Log in or subscribe to access all of BMJ Best Practice