MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) – As a cardiology research fellow at UAB, Dr. Vibhu Parcha is treating some of the sickest COVID-19 patients.
“It was almost instantaneous that we started to know that almost every COVID patient that was admitted was having some derangement in their clotting profile,” Parcha stated.
Universally, COVID patients are being admitted to UAB with blood clotting issues, a manifestation of the virus. Even those who are very healthy aren’t immune. While some patients develop blood clots as the virus progresses, others are admitted after suffering from a stroke or heart attack brought on by the virus.
“Young patients are coming in with no comorbidities and they’re coming in with strokes and kidney failure, a lot of patients who do develop strokes do not completely recover,” he explained. “It’s staggering.”
Parcha says he recently treated a 30-year-old who attempted to fight the virus at home. Due to clotting issues, he now has permanent heart damage. Parcha says if the patient had come in three days earlier, it could have changed his life.
“We’ve had a range of patients that we’ve seen,” Parcha said of the patients’ ages and health conditions. “We had a 35-year-old guy who had a five kids, he was doing really well before the pandemic came in. He was admitted with us, we took very good care of him. We tried our best. He was with us in the intensive care unit. He did not make it.”
Most of the blood clots are in the lungs, but also impact other major organs. Some doctors go as far to say COVID-19 is one of the most clot-producing diseases they’ve ever treated.
“As more data and evidence accumulates we’ll have a better understanding of what regulates the fact that some have higher manifestations of the clotting disorder, while others don’t,” he said.