New Pulmonary Infiltrates Observed on Computed Tomography-Based Image Guidance for Radiotherapy Warrant Diagnostic Workup for Coronavirus Disease 2019

Graham W. Warren, Vun Sin Lim, Mudit Chowdhary, Gaurav Marwaha, Osama Mostafa Abd Elbadee, Esra Korkmaz Kirakli, Charlotte Billiet, Alexandra Giraldo Marin, Monica Ramos, Morten Hiul Suppli, Gwendolyn J. McGinnis, Alex A. Adjei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Introduction: Screening for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) exposure, coupled with engaged decision making to prioritize cancer treatment in parallel with reducing risk of exposure and infection, is crucial in the management of COVID-19 during cancer treatment. After two reported case studies of imaging findings during daily computed tomography (CT)-based image-guided radiotherapy (RT) scans, a call for submission of anonymized case reports was published with the objective of rapidly determining if there was a correlation between the onset of new pulmonary infiltrates found during RT and COVID-19. We hereby report the results of the aggregate analysis. Methods: Data of deidentified case reports for patients who developed biochemically confirmed COVID-19 during RT were submitted through an online portal. Information requested included a patient's sex, age, cancer diagnosis and treatment, and COVID-19 diagnosis and outcome. Coplanar CT-based imaging was requested to reveal the presence or absence of ground-glass opacities or infiltrates. Results: A total of seven reports were submitted from Turkey, Spain, Belgium, Egypt, and the United States. Results and imaging from the patients reported by Suppli et al. and McGinnis et al. were included for a total of nine patients for analysis. All patients were confirmed COVID-19 positive using polymerase chain reaction-based methods or nasopharyngeal swabs. Of the nine patients analyzed, abnormalities consistent with ground-glass opacities or infiltrates were observed in eight patients. Conclusions: This is the largest case series revealing the potential use of CT-based image guidance during RT as a tool for identifying patients who need further workup for COVID-19. Considerations for reviewing image guidance for new pulmonary infiltrates and immediate COVID-19 testing in patients who develop new infiltrates even without COVID-19 symptoms are strongly encouraged.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1946-1951
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Thoracic Oncology
Volume16
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2021

Keywords

  • Computed tomography
  • COVID-19
  • Ground-glass opacities
  • Radiotherapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine

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