Laboratory workup and COVID-19 specific tests

A variety of laboratory findings are associated with COVID-19:

Data from a large cohort study on 1099 patients published in NEJM: most likely to be elevated in patients upon hospital admission


List of References 

Guan WJ, Ni ZY, Hu Y, Liang WH, Ou CQ, He JX, Liu L, Shan H, Lei CL, Hui DS, Du B. Clinical characteristics of coronavirus disease 2019 in China. New England Journal of Medicine. 2020 Feb 28.

Huang C, Wang Y, Li X, Ren L, Zhao J, Hu Y, Zhang L, Fan G, Xu J, Gu X, Cheng Z. Clinical features of patients infected with 2019 novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China. The Lancet. 2020 Feb 15;395(10223):497-506.

Luo X, Zhou W, Yan X, Guo T, Wang B, Xia H, Ye L, Xiong J, Jiang Z, Liu Y, Zhang B. Prognostic value of C-reactive protein in patients with COVID-19. medRxiv. 2020 Jan 1.

Richardson S, Hirsch JS, Narasimhan M, Crawford JM, McGinn T, Davidson KW, Barnaby DP, Becker LB, Chelico JD, Cohen SL, Cookingham J. Presenting Characteristics, Comorbidities, and Outcomes Among 5700 Patients Hospitalized With COVID-19 in the New York City Area. JAMA.

Wang D, Hu B, Hu C, Zhu F, Liu X, Zhang J, Wang B, Xiang H, Cheng Z, Xiong Y, Zhao Y. Clinical characteristics of 138 hospitalized patients with 2019 novel coronavirus–infected pneumonia in Wuhan, China. Jama. 2020 Mar 17;323(11):1061-9.

Wu C, Chen X, Cai Y, Zhou X, Xu S, Huang H, Zhang L, Zhou X, Du C, Zhang Y, Song J. Risk factors associated with acute respiratory distress syndrome and death in patients with coronavirus disease 2019 pneumonia in Wuhan, China. JAMA internal medicine. 2020 Mar 13.

Zhou F, Yu T, Du R, Fan G, Liu Y, Liu Z, Xiang J, Wang Y, Song B, Gu X, Guan L. Clinical course and risk factors for mortality of adult inpatients with COVID-19 in Wuhan, China: a retrospective cohort study. The Lancet. 2020 Mar 11.

Last Updated 5 months ago

Other research on specific laboratory values 


  • Wang et. al estimated that 70.3% of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 had lymphopenia
  • Wu et. al noted an association between lymphopenia and and progression to ARDS and death
  • A study published in The Lancet estimated that 63% (26/41) patients hospitalized with COVID-19 had lymphopenia


  • Wu et. al estimated of 194 patients hospitalized for COVID-19, 166 (85.6%) had increases in hs-CRP
  • A pre-print by Luo et. al from Wuhan, China concluded that “in patients with COVID-19, admission CRP correlated with disease severity and tended to be a good predictor of adverse outcome.”


  • Zhou et. al calculated in their cohort of 191 patients, D-dimer values >1 on admission were associated with an increased risk of in-hospital death (OR = 18.42, 2.64–128.55; p=0.0033)
  • Wu et. al estimated significant elevations in D-dimer in COVID-19 patients that progressed to ARDS and death


  • Richardson et. al calculated in their cohort of 5700 patients with ARDS in NYC, 58.4% had an elevated AST >40 U/L while 39.0% had an elevated ALT >60 U/L

Procalcitonin: Data on 102 non-ICU patients and 36 ICU patients with COVID-19 showed that ICU patients were significantly more likely to have elevated procalcitonin levels 

Difference estimated to be p<0.001 
Last Updated 4 months ago
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