Rectal bleeding reported in 5 Covid-19 patients in Delhi, one dead

Patients with Cytomegalovirus have complained of bleeding in stools and abdominal pain. The cases have emerged in the second wave of infections this year One of the patients has succumbed to massive bleeding and Covid chest disease, officials from Sir Ganga Ram Hospital said.
Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in New Delhi. (HT archive)
Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in New Delhi. (HT archive)
Published on Jun 29, 2021 02:28 PM IST
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By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Arpan Rai, New Delhi

In a first such post Covid-19 complication in India, five cases of Cytomegalovirus (CVM) related rectal bleeding in patients diagnosed with Covid-19 have been reported from Delhi's Sir Ganga Ram Hospital on Tuesday. Patients with Cytomegalovirus have complained of bleeding in stools and abdominal pain, officials said.

The cases have emerged in the second wave of infections this year, officials said.

One of the patients has succumbed to massive bleeding and Covid chest disease, officials from Sir Ganga Ram Hospital confirmed.

"During the second wave of the Covid-19 in April-May 2021, we have seen five cases of CMV infection in otherwise immunocompetent patients with Covid-19. These patients presented with pain abdomen and bleeding in stools with a mean of 20 to 30 days after the diagnosis of Covid-19," a statement released by the hospital read.

None of them had other predisposing immunosuppressed states accounting for this viral infection, the statement added.

The cases have been seen in the age group of 30-70 years from Delhi-NCR. Four patients have complained of lower gastrointestinal bleed which is bleeding in stools and one patient presented with intestinal obstruction. Of the five patients, two reported massive bleed, with one requiring emergency life-saving surgery in which the side of the colon has been removed.

Three patients have been successfully treated with antiviral therapy with ganciclovir, Dr. Arora said in a statement.

The officials explained that Covid infection itself and the medicines used for its treatment (Steroids) do suppress the immunity of patients and make them susceptible to uncommon infections with varied presentations. One such opportunistic infection is (CMV) virus.

Cytomegalo virus exists in 80 to 90% of the Indian population in asymptomatic form due to inherent immunity which makes it strong enough to be clinically asymptomatic.

Three patients have been successfully treated with antiviral therapy with ganciclovir, Dr. Arora said in a statement.

Doctors have suggested early diagnosis and effective antiviral therapy as a way of treatment to handle the cases of CMV infection in Covid-19 patients.

"In such cases of high index of suspicion and timely intervention in the form of an early diagnosis and effective antiviral therapy can save many precious lives, says Dr. Praveen Sharma of Sir Ganga Ram Hospital said.

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Saturday, October 23, 2021