Factors associated with long COVID syndrome in a Colombian cohort

María Camila Martínez-Ayala, Nadia Juliana Proaños, Julian Cala-Duran, Alvaro Jose Lora-Mantilla, Catalina Cáceres-Ramírez, Silvia Juliana Villabona-Flórez, Paul Anthony Camacho-López

Research output: Articles / NotesScientific Articlepeer-review


Introduction: After acute phase of SARS-CoV-2 infection, some patients persist with clinical symptoms, a phenomenon known as Long COVID syndrome. It is necessary to understand the factors associated with the persistence of these symptoms to develop individualized preventive approaches and effectively address this challenge. Objective: To determine the factors associated with the persistence of symptoms six months after COVID-19 infection. Materials and methods: A ambidirectional cohort, single-center study, that included individuals previously diagnosed with COVID-19 by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) positive test, who were followed for a period of six months. Univariate, bivariate and a multivariate binomial regression model were performed to determine risk factors associated with the persistence of COVID-19 symptoms at the six months of follow-up. Results: The prevalence of long COVID syndrome was 47%. Age demonstrated no significant association with Long COVID (RR 0.999 [95% CI 0.996–1.002]); however, female sex (RR 1.148 [95% CI 1.038–1.268]), requirement of mechanical ventilation (RR 1.278 [95% CI 1.050–1.555]), presence of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) (RR 1.340 [95% CI 1.104–1.626]), Rheumatic Disease (RR 1.259 [95% CI 1.055–1.504]) and the Hospitalization Type: General Hospitalization (RR 1.247 [95% CI 1.090–1.427]) and ICU Hospitalization (RR 1.490 [95% CI 1.221–1.818]) were significantly associated with the persistence of symptoms at the six month of follow-up. Conclusion: Female sex, presence of COPD, rheumatic disease, hospitalization type and requirement of mechanical ventilation during index infection were identified as significant risk factors for the diagnosis of Long COVID. These findings emphasize the importance of addressing Long COVID syndrome in terms of prevention and management, taking these risk factors into consideration.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1325616
JournalFrontiers in Medicine
StatePublished - 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • COVID-19
  • post COVID condition
  • post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 (PASC)
  • risk factors
  • SARS-CoV-2


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