SARS-COV-2 infection spreading becomes a long and challenging medical question. The possibility to improve the diagnosis of SARS-COV-2 infection in digestive endoscopy is important because gastrointestinal symptoms can be the presenting symptoms of COVID-19.
We tried to obtain a fast and “bedside” diagnosis of gastrointestinal COVID-19 by performing serological rapid test to verify the presence of SARS-COV-2 in gastrointestinal mucosal specimens.
From the 4th to the 30th January 2021, regular mucosal biopsies were taken from stomach, ileum or colon of 10 COVID-19 patients (7M, 3F, mean age: 49.7 y.o.) and from 10 negative patients ( 6M, 4F, mean age: 50 y.o.) according to standard clinical indications. One specimen for each patient was placed in a sterile test-tube with 5 drops of standard reagent for rapid serological test for 10 minutes.
After that period, both the specimen and the drops were put on the platform for serological rapid tests. In all COVID-19 patients, tests were positive for both IgG and IgM bands (and control bands, confirming that the test worked properly). Otherwise, the analysis of gastrointestinal specimen of negative patients showed only the control band.
No differences were found for different specimens (stomach, colon or ileum).
Statistical analysis conducted to compare the results of the two groups confirmed the difference between COVID-19 positive and negative groups.
Applying this kind of analysis, we can immediately verify if gastrointestinal symptoms (especially diarrhea) of a non-tested patient are related to SARS-COV-2 infection and we can use this test as a rapid test in case of suspected endoscopic findings to confirm the association with SARS-COV-2 infection.
In the end, the test can contribute to help in the differential diagnosis of gastrointestinal manifestations considering the long-term management of SARS-COV-2 infections.