Stephen Hanauer, MD: Gastrointestinal Symptoms Mild in COVID-19

August 17, 2020
Kenny Walter

Kenny Walter is an editor with HCPLive. Prior to joining MJH Life Sciences in 2019, he worked as a digital reporter covering nanotechnology, life sciences, material science and more with R&D Magazine. He graduated with a degree in journalism from Temple University in 2008 and began his career as a local reporter for a chain of weekly newspapers based on the Jersey shore. When not working, he enjoys going to the beach and enjoying the shore in the summer and watching North Carolina Tar Heel basketball in the winter.

A gastroenterologist discusses how gastrointestinal symptoms are manifesting in patients with COVID-19.

After several months of researchers, experts are beginning to see clusters of symptoms might foretell which patients will have more severe outcomes and which ones will have more mild outcomes.

The more deadly and serious outcomes generally are more attached to some of the pulmonary symptoms, forcing patients onto ventilators.

For the gastrointestinal symptoms. The discovery has been mainly limited to diarrhea and a loss of taste and smell.

However, these symptoms, for the majority of patients, don’t come with the pulmonary symptoms and generally have better outcomes.

Another concern when the pandemic started was how patients on immunosuppressants, particularly patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), would handle infections.

Thus far, this patient population has not seen worse outcomes than the general population.

In an interview with HCPLive®, Stephen B. Hanauer, MD, Northwestern Medicine, explained some of the data found for gastrointestinal symptoms and IBD patients.