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May 29, 2020

CT false negatives common in children with Covid-19, study finds

By Chloe Kent

An investigation published in the American Journal of Roentgenology has revealed a high frequency of negative chest computed tomography (CT) scans among paediatric patients with laboratory-confirmed Covid-19.

Reviewing the CT scans and clinical symptoms of 30 patients aged ten to 18 who tested positive for Covid-19 at six centres in China found that CT findings were negative 77% of the time. Of the 30 patients, 11 underwent follow-up chest CTs, ten of which showed no change. This has brought into further question the utility of using CT as part of the Covid-19 diagnosis process.

Of the patients who did test positive, bilateral, lower lobe-predominant ground-glass opacities (GGOs) were common, with peripheral lung distribution, crazy paving pattern, as well as halo and reverse halo signs.

The authors of the article also observed a correlation between increasing age and increasing severity of findings.

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