Lung imaging to predict neurological issues

Lung problems are a particular concern for “long-haulers” who can’t shake the effects of COVID-19. But since the pandemic hit, researchers have been uncovering ways the novel coronavirus hurts parts of the body other than the lungs.

Now, for the first time, a visual correlation has been found between the severity of the disease in the lungs (using CT scans) and the severity of effects on patients’ brains (using MRI scans).

The results come from a team at the University of Cincinnati, led by Achala Vagal, MD, professor in the department of radiology, and Abdelkader Mahammedi, MD, assistant professor of radiology. Both are UC Health radiologists and members of the UC Gardner Neuroscience Institute.

The study also involved other institutions in Brazil, Italy and Spain and showed that by looking at lung CT scans of patients diagnosed with COVID-19, physicians may be able to predict just how badly they’ll experience other neurological problems. The neurological problems could show up on brain MRIs, helping improve patient outcomes and identify symptoms for earlier treatment.

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Learn more about the study.

Featured photo of Abdel Mahammedi looking at scan by Colleen Kelley.

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