Late-onset pulmonary complications among survivors of Coronavirus Disease 2019

  • Mirza Muhammad Ayub Baig Assistant Professor of Pulmonology, SGRH/FJMU
  • Muhammad Adnan
  • Muhammad Usman Baig
  • Zohaib Ramzan
Keywords: COVID-19, Dyspnea, Pulmonary fibrosis, SARS-CoV-2, tachycardia, Post-COVID


Objectives: To assess the late-onset pulmonary complications among survivors of coronavirus disease 2019.

Methods: The cross-sectional analytical study was conducted in the department of Pulmonology, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital Lahore between October 2020 and March 2021. Total 288 patients visiting the hospital 12-week after recovery from COVID-19 enrolled using convenience sampling. After excluding patients (n=61) with a history of previous respiratory symptoms before the development of COVID-19, data from 227 patients was subjected to final analysis. Chest X-ray (CXR) was used to evaluate lung condition.

Results: Participation of middle-aged adults (54.6%) was higher than older (38.3%) and young adults (7.0%). The percentage of males was 55.5% and smokers was 29.1%. Dyspnea was the most common complication as 80.0% patients had moderate to severe dyspnea while chronic cough was 78.0% and lung fibrosis (LF) was 13.2%. The chances of LF increased with the rise in age (p-value 0.033). However, the distribution of LF was similar between males and females. The frequency of lung fibrosis in smokers was 3-time higher than among non-smokers (24.2 vs. 8.7%; p-value 0.003). The patients with LF were more dependent on O2 as compared to the patients without LF (p-value < 0.001). The frequency of tachycardia was significantly different between patients with and without LF (all p-values < 0.05).

Conclusion: LF is a common late-onset pulmonary complication of COVID-19 and is associated with old age, smoking, O2 dependency, tachycardia, and severe dyspnea.


How to cite this: Baig MMA, Adnan M, Baig MU, Ramzan Z. Late-onset pulmonary complications among survivors of Coronavirus Disease 2019. Pak J Med Sci. 2023;39(4):1035-1039. doi:

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

How to Cite
Ayub Baig, M. M., Adnan, M., Baig, M. U., & Ramzan, Z. (2023). Late-onset pulmonary complications among survivors of Coronavirus Disease 2019. Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences, 39(4).
Original Articles