Background: Frailty, determined by the Canadian Study of Health and Aging-Clinical Frailty Scale (CFS), is strongly associated with clinical outcomes including mortality in patients with COVID-19. However, the relationship between frailty and other recognised prognostic factors including age, nutritional status, obesity, sarcopenia and systemic inflammation is poorly understood. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine the relationship between frailty and other prognostic domains, in patients admitted with COVID-19.

Methods: Patients who presented to our institutions between 1st April 2020–6th July 2020 with confirmed COVID-19 were assessed for inclusion. Data collected included general demographic details, clinicopathological variables, CFS admission assessment, Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool (MUST), CT-BC measurements and markers of systemic inflammation.

Results: 106 patients met the study inclusion criteria. The majority of patients were aged ≥ 70 years (67%), male (53%) and frail (scoring > 3 on the CFS, 72%). The majority of patients were not malnourished (MUST 0, 58%), had ≥ 1 co-morbidity (87%), were sarcopenic (low SMI, 80%) and had systemic inflammation (mGPS ≥ 1, 81%, NLR > 5, 55%). On multivariate binary logistics regression analysis, age (p < 0.01), COPD (p < 0.05) and NLR (p < 0.05) remained independently associated with frailty. On univariate binary logistics regression, NLR (p < 0.05) was significantly associated with 30-day mortality.

Conclusion: Frailty was independently associated with age, co-morbidity, and systemic inflammation. The basis of the relationship between frailty and clinical outcomes in COVID-19 requires further study.

Trial registration Registered with clinicaltrials.gov (NCT04484545).


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Cite as

McGovern, J., Al-Azzawi, Y., Kemp, O., Moffitt, P., Richards, C., Dolan, R., Laird, B., McMillan, D. & Maguire, D. 2022, 'The relationship between frailty, nutritional status, co-morbidity, CT-body composition and systemic inflammation in patients with COVID-19', Journal of Translational Medicine, 20, article no: 98. http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12967-022-03300-2

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Last updated: 05 September 2022
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