Case report: cerebral thromboembolism in an unconscious COVID-19 patient in intensive care

Ünver E., Kuyrukluyıldız U., Karavaş E., Tas H. G.

PAN AFRICAN MEDICAL JOURNAL, vol.38, 2021 (ESCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 38
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.11604/pamj.2021.38.373.29034
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, CAB Abstracts, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database
  • Erzincan Binali Yildirim University Affiliated: Yes


Although the severity of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) being more frequently related to acute respiratory distress syndrome and acute cardiac and renal injuries, thromboembolic events have been increasingly reported. Acute respiratory distress syndrome due to SARS-CoV-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome - Corona Virus 2) often requires intensive care follow-up. As well as respiratory failure, the SARS-CoV-2 may cause central nervous system (CNS) involvement. The pandemic has raised many challenges in managing critically ill older adults, a population preferentially killed by COVID-19. The mortality and morbidity rates are extremely high in critically ill patients with COVID-19. Recent studies have reported the potential development of a hypercoagulable state in COVID-19. Viral infections and hypoxia may cause these state. It is increasingly reported that thromboembolic events are associated with a poor prognosis. Due to these thromboembolic complications, COVID-19 patients often have neurological symptoms. These symptoms may not be observed in intensive care patients who are sedated. We report one case who was sedated COVID-19 pneumonia and who was later diagnosed with cerebral venous thrombosis with cranial imaging when he could not awaken even though sedation was discontinued. Since COVID-19 causes intense thrombotic susceptibility due to cytokine storm, cerebrovascular thromboembolic complications associated with COVID-19 infection should be considered first and foremost for unconsciousness ventilated patients. Severe and potentially cerebral thrombosis may prolong the patient's stay in intensive care.