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Steiner, J; Kaufmann-Bühler, AK; Fuchsjäger, M; Schemmer, P; Talakić, E.
Secondary sclerosing cholangitis in a young COVID-19 patient resulting in death: A case report.
World J Gastrointest Surg. 2022; 14(12): 1411-1417. Doi: 10.4240/wjgs.v14.i12.1411 (- Case Report) [OPEN ACCESS]
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Führende Autor*innen der Med Uni Graz
Steiner Jakob
Talakic Emina
Co-Autor*innen der Med Uni Graz
Fuchsjäger Michael
Kaufmann-Bühler Ann-Katrin
Schemmer Peter

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BACKGROUND: With the emergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in late 2019 in Wuhan, China, liver injury in patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) due to SARS-CoV-2 infection has been regularly reported in the literature. There are a growing number of publications describing the occurrence of secondary sclerosing cholangitis (SSC) after SARS-CoV-2 infection in various cases. We present a case of sudden onset SSC in a critically ill patient (SSC-CIP) following COVID-19 infection who was previously healthy. CASE SUMMARY: A 33-year old female patient was admitted to our University Hospital due to increasing shortness of breath. A prior rapid antigen test showed a positive result for SARS-CoV-2. The patient had no known preexisting conditions. With rapidly increasing severe hypoxemia she required endotracheal intubation and developed the need for veno-venous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation in a setting of acute respiratory distress syndrome. During the patient´s 154-d stay in the intensive care unit and other hospital wards she underwent hemodialysis and extended polypharmaceutical treatment. With increasing liver enzymes and the development of signs of cholangiopathy on magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP) as well as endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP), the clinical setting was suggestive of SSC. At an interdisciplinary meeting, the possibility of orthotopic liver transplantation and additional kidney transplantation was discussed due to the constant need for hemodialysis. Following a deterioration in her general health and impaired respiratory function with a reduced chance of successful surgery and rehabilitation, the plan for transplantation was discarded. The patient passed away due to multiorgan failure. CONCLUSION: SSC-CIP seems to be a rare but serious complication in patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection, of which treating physicians should be aware. Imaging with MRCP and/or ERCP seems to be indicated and a valid method for early diagnosis. Further studies on the effects of early and late SSC in (post-) COVID-19 patients needs to be performed.

Find related publications in this database (Keywords)
Secondary sclerosing cholangitis
Liver failure
Critically ill patients
Magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography
Case report
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