Intended for healthcare professionals

CCBYNC Open access

Rapid response to:

Research

Viral load dynamics and disease severity in patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 in Zhejiang province, China, January-March 2020: retrospective cohort study

BMJ 2020; 369 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.m1443 (Published 21 April 2020) Cite this as: BMJ 2020;369:m1443

Linked Editorial

Persistence of viral RNA in stool samples from patients recovering from covid-19

Read our latest coverage of the coronavirus pandemic

Rapid Response:

Re: Viral load dynamics and disease severity in patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 in Zhejiang province, China, January-March 2020: retrospective cohort study

Dear Editor

In the rapid response to our article on viral load dynamics and disease severity in patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 in China, Dr. Baloch commented that the study had some apparently contrasting facts and figures, which affected the overall conclusion, and questioned the quality of the study. No doubt, there were no problems with our data, and our presentation of time was clear.

In this study, we recruited 96 consecutively admitted patients during 19 January 2020 to 15 February 2020, and these patients were followed before discharge from the baseline date to 20 March 2020.

In supplementary figure 2, the title of the x-coordinate is “Days after Symptom Onset” but not “Days since Admission”. As some patients had already developed symptoms before January 19, 2020, the maximum days since symptom onset is 66 in the present study which is different from the above two time periods.

As for the four months mentioned in the summary, we refer to the period from December 2019 when the outbreak started.

We appreciated Dr. Baloch’s attention to our article and we hope that our reply could make Dr. Baloch understand this article better.

Reference:
Zheng S, Fan J. Yu F, et al., Viral load dynamics and disease severity in patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 in Zhejiang province, China, January-March 2020: retrospective cohort study. BMJ. 2020;369:m1443. doi: 10.1136/bmj.m1443

Competing interests: No competing interests

26 April 2020
Shufa Zheng
Assistant research fellow
State Key Laboratory for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, National Clinical Research Centre for Infectious Diseases, Collaborative Innovation center for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, First Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, P.R. China
79 Qingchun Road, Hangzhou, 310003, China