1 Department of Pathology, Mohammed bin Rashid University School of Medicine, Dubai UAE
2 American Hospital, Dubai, UAE
The diagnosis of viral causes for flu-like syndromes have positively been impacted by the availability of molecular assays. In recent years, syndromic multiplex panels have been able to give rapid turn-around-times and highly accurate results. We examine the use of this test during the first four months of 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic.
A retrospective review of 2145 patient results from a multiplex syndromic flu panel using Biofire RP2 was performed. Cases in which parallel testing for COVID-19 by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) was compared.
53% of the patients tested identified as a viral agent. 13% of the positive cases were coinfection with more than a single virus. The most frequently detected virus(es) were rhinovirus/enterovirus, followed by coronaviruses (non-MERS, non-COVID-19). One hundred patients had simultaneous testing for COVID-19. Seventeen (17%) had positive COVID-19 by RT-PCR. Three of these patients had coinfection with rhinovirus/enterovirus and COVID-19. The negative predictive value for COVID-19 based on a positive non-COVID agent was 95% in our sample.
Viral syndromic panels are useful for the rapid detection and appropriate treatment of patients. Our results suggest coinfection is infrequent, and we discuss the impact of COVID-19 on patient testing strategy. The use of multiplex panels is useful to provide accurate diagnosis and rule out important pathogens that have different treatment approaches.
open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode). This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Pathology, Mohammed bin Rashid University School of Medicine, Dubai UAE; E-mail: Aaron.firstname.lastname@example.org
Abdullah Shehab Emirates Cardiac Society Emirates Medical Association Dubai (UAE) Biography
Biography of Abdullah Shehab
Dr. Abdullah Shehab has 22 years of experience in Internal medicine, cardiology and interventional cardiology and medical education. Currently, he serves as the General Secretary of Emirates Cardiac Society and Vice President of Gulf Intervention Society. He is a Fellow of royal college of physicians UK, American college of physician, European society of cardiology, of American college of cardiology, American society of cardiac intervention and fellow of American heart association. Professor Shehab is the Chief editor of Emirates Medical Journal and also serves as editor in many other regional and international journals. Dr. Shehab has published 149 paper in Medline. His research interest includes: Heart failure, Coronary artery disease, Dyslipidaemia, Hypertension, Arrhythmias, Cardiac intervention, Cardiac imaging, Screening for cardiac disease in sport players, Cardiovascular disease in pregnancy.