Epidemiological and clinical characteristics of COVID-19 in adolescents and young adults

Jiaqiang Liao, Shibing Fan Sr., Jing Chen, Jianglin Wu, Shunqing Xu, Yuming Guo, Chunhui Li, Xianxiang Zhang, Chuansha Wu, Huaming Mou, Chenxi Song, Feng Li, Guicheng Wu, Jingjing Zhang, Lian Guo, Huawen Liu, Jinglong Lv, Lixin Xu, Chunhui Lang

Cell Press Journal pre-proof DOI: 10.1016/j.xinn.2020.04.001


Background: Adolescents and young adults might play a key role in the worldwide spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), because they are more likely to be involved in overseas studying, business, working, and traveling. However, the epidemiological and clinical characteristics of them are still unknown.

Methods: We collected data of 46 confirmed COVID-19 patients aged 10 to 35 years from the Chongqing Three Gorges Central Hospital. The demographic, epidemiological, and clinical data were collected. Several key epidemiological parameters, the asymptomatic cases and transmission to their family members and the clinical characteristics at admission, and during treatment were summarized.

RESULTS: Of 46 confirmed patients, 14 patients (30.4%) were aged from 10 to 24 years, and 24 (52.2%) patients were male. The estimated mean incubation period was 6.6 days (95% confidence interval (CI) 4.4 – 9.6). The median serial interval was 1.9 days (95% CI 0.4 – 6.2). Three of the asymptomatic cases showed the transmission to their family members. Only 1 patient was identified as a severe case at admission. The common symptoms at admission were dry cough (34, 81.0%), and fever (29, 69.1%). Nearly 60% of the patients showed ground-glass opacity by chest CT findings. Three patients developed acute kidney injury during treatment. Most of the patients (78.3%) were recovered and discharged by the end of the follow-up.

Conclusions: This single center study with a relatively small sample size showed that the adolescent and young adult patients of COVID-19 had a long incubation period and a short serial interval. The transmission occurred from asymptomatic cases to their family. Fewer patients have developed complications during treatment.


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