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July 2, 2020

Viscometers prove valuable for Covid-19 research and treatment

By Chloe Kent

Viscometers, which are used to measure the thickness of bodily fluid like blood, plasma and serum, are being used to provide meaningful data for medical teams treating Covid-19 patients at seven UK hospitals.

Very high plasma viscosity in critically ill Covid-19 patients has been associated with thrombotic complications and abnormal blood coagulation, according to a paper published in The Lancet in late May. This is due to an increased concentration of a clotting protein called fibrinogen.

Research is now being carried out to explore the potential for plasma viscosity results to aid in the early identification of Covid-19 patients at risk of severe symptoms. Early indications show a statistical difference between Covid and non-Covid groups, with plasma viscosity tests routinely being performed to monitor Covid-19 patients.

Benson Viscometers founder Bernie Benson said: “We have always believed that clinical viscosity testing, and plasma viscosity testing in particular, has so much more to offer our healthcare system. I am confident pathology laboratories will invest the time and energy in this research and find the significant breakthrough in outcomes for critically ill patients and that the world is now waking up to the huge value of this clinical viscosity testing in general.”

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