Clinical predictors of poor outcomes in patients with sickle cell disease and COVID-19 infection

Caterina P. Minniti, Ahmar U. Zaidi, Mehdi Nouraie, Deepa Manwani, Gary D. Crouch, Andrew S. Crouch, Michael U. Callaghan, Sarah Carpenter, Charleen Jacobs, Jin Han, Jena Simon, Jeffrey Glassberg, Victor R. Gordeuk, Elizabeth S. Klings

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


We aimed to identify predictors of outcomes and survival in patients living in 4 major metropolitan areaswhohad sickle cell disease (SCD) and COVID-19 to inform best approaches to prevention and care. Data were collected at baseline and during the clinical course in SCD patients diagnosed with COVID-19 in four COVID-19 epicenters. Patients were followed up posthospital discharge for up to 3 months. Of sixty-six SCD patients with COVID-19, fifty patients (75%) required hospitalization, and seven died (10.6%). Patients with preexisting kidney disease (chronic kidney disease) were more likely to be hospitalized. The most common presenting symptom was vaso-occlusive pain. Acute chest syndrome occurred in 30 (60%) of the 50 hospitalized patients and in all who died. Older age and histories of pulmonary hypertension, congestive heart failure, chronic kidney disease, and stroke were more prevalent in patients who died, as were higher creatinine, lactate dehydrogenase, and D-dimer levels. Anticoagulation use while inpatient was twice less common in patients who died. All deaths occurred in individuals not taking hydroxyurea or any other SCD-modifying therapy. Patients with SCD and COVID-19 exhibited a broad range of disease severity. We cannot definitively state that the overall mortality is higher in patients with SCD, although our case fatality rate was ;10% compared with ;3% in the general population, despite a median age of 34 years. Individuals with SCD aged.50 years, with preexisting cardiopulmonary, renal disease, and/or stroke not receiving hydroxyurea, who present with high serum creatinine, lactate dehydrogenase, and D-dimer levels, are at higher risk of death, irrespective of genotype or sex.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-215
Number of pages9
JournalBlood Advances
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 12 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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