Purpose: To investigate the imaging features of emerging COVID-19 pneumonia on chest ultrasound, radiographs and computed tomography examinations performed at admission . In addition, we provide a review of the literature and compare our results with recent evidence regarding the imaging characteristics of this novel disease . Material and methods: From March 17, 2020 to April 25, 2020, 23 patients with real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay confirmed COVID-19 were identified . All 23 patients were evaluated and admitted at San Giuseppe Moscati Hospital in Aversa, Italy . Multi-modality imaging findings were evaluated and compared . Literature research was conducted through a methodical search on PubMed .
Results: Twenty-three patients were included in the study . Chest transthoracic ultrasound (US), chest X-ray (CXR), and computed tomography (CT) were performed respectively in 11 , 16 and 21 patients . Chest US findings were consistent with diffuse B lines (91 %), subpleural consolidations (45 %), and thickened pleural line (18 %). CXR showed prevalent manifestations of consolidations (50 %) and hazy increased opacities (37 %). Typical CT features are bilateral and multilobar ground-glass opacities (GGO). Indeed GGO were present in 100% of our patients . Consolidations were visible in 76% of our study population . Notably both GGO and consolidations had a peripheral distribution in all our patients . Other CT imaging features included crazy-paving pattern, fibrous stripes, subpleural lines, architectural distortion, air bronchogram sign, vascular thickening and nodules . Our literature review identified thirty original studies supporting our imaging chest findings .
Conclusions: At admission, COVID-19 pneumonia can manifest in chest imaging as B-lines and consolidations on US, hazy opacities and consolidations on CXR, multiple GGO and consolidations on CT scan.
Index: COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, computed tomography (CT), coronavirus disease, pneumonia, radiographic chest examination (CXR)