Background The long-term functional outcome of discharged patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) remains unresolved. We aimed to describe a six-month follow-up of functional status of COVID-19 survivors.
Methods We reviewed the data of COVID-19 patients who had been consecutively admitted to the Tumor Center of Union Hospital (Wuhan, China) between 15 February and 14 March 2020. We quantified a six-month functional outcome reflecting symptoms and disability in COVID-19 survivors using a post-COVID-19 functional status scale ranging from 0 to 5 (PCFS). We examined the risk factors for the incomplete functional status defined as a PCFS > 0 at a six-month follow-up after discharge.
Results We included a total of 95 COVID-19 survivors with a median age of 62 (IQR 53-69) who had a complete functional status (PCFS grade 0) at baseline in this retrospective observational study. At six-month follow-up, 67 (70.5%) patients had a complete functional outcome (grade 0), 9 (9.5%) had a negligible limited function (grade 1), 12 (12.6%) had a mild limited function (grade 2), 7 (7.4%) had moderate limited function (grade 3). Univariable logistic regression analysis showed a significant association between the onset symptoms of muscle or joint pain and an increased risk of incomplete function (unadjusted OR 4.06, 95%CI 1.33 - 12.37). This association remained after adjustment for age and admission delay (adjusted OR 3.39, 95%CI 1.06 - 10.81, p = 0.039).
Conclusions A small proportion of discharged COVID-19 patients may have an incomplete functional outcome at a six-month follow-up; intervention strategies are required.