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14 post-Covid patients suffer large abscesses in liver, one dies: SGRH

New Delhi: Sir Ganga Ram Hospital has reported 14 cases of unusual, large, multiple liver abscesses in patients who recovered from the second wave of COVID-19 infections, the hospital said on Thursday. "During the second wave, a number of COVID-19 patients presented with some unusual manifestations. We saw for the first time in the last two months unusually large and multiple liver abscesses in 14 patients after recovery from COVID-19 infection".

Liver abscess (pus formation in liver) is commonly caused by a parasite known as Entamoeba histolytica which is transmitted by contaminated food and water. "What we found unusual was that after recovery from Covid within 22 days in patients who were otherwise immunocompetent had large areas of both lobes of liver filled with pus at multiple locations requiring drainage and hospitalization", said prof. Anil Arora, Chairman, Institute of Liver Gastroenterology and Pancreaticobiliary Sciences, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.

He added: "These patients were between 28-74 years of age, 10 were males and four females. All patients had fever and upper abdominal pain and three patients also had associated lower GI bleeding with black coloured stools. Eight of these patients received steroids for the management of COVID-19 symptoms. Six patients had multiple large abscesses in both lobes of liver of which five had unusually large abscess. Thirteen out of 14 patients were successfully treated while one patient with large multiple abscesses died due to massive bleeding in abdomen after rupture of abscess in the abdominal cavity."

Doctors found multiple and large abscesses in these patients which is very unusual for an immunocompetent person. Doctors believe that suppression of immunity by COVID-19 infection along with use of steroids to treat Covid infection per se, low index of suspicion for liver abscess and delay in treatment in patients recuperating from Covid in this pandemic probably led to development of multiple and large abscesses in the liver.

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