Abdominal Compartment Syndrome in a Patient Suspected of Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19)


West Florida


Citrus Memorial Hospital

Document Type

Case Report

Publication Date



sars-cov-2, coronavirus, COVID-19, compartment syndromes


Cardiovascular Diseases | Critical Care | Emergency Medicine | Virus Diseases


Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) is a novel coronavirus which has become a worldwide pandemic, the other common coronaviruses to cause deadly respiratory disease are SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV. SARS-CoV-2, SARS-CoV, and MERS-CoV are commonly transmitted through respiratory droplets and direct contact. Patients with SARS-CoV-2 can present with varying severity from asymptomatic to multi-organ failure. We present a rare case of abdominal compartment syndrome in a patient suspected of coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19).

A 59-year-old male presented to the emergency room (ER) complaining of abdominal pain, urinary retention, and abdominal distension. He gave a past medical history of hypertension, nephrolithiasis, and recent outpatient treatment for acute bronchitis. The following day patient developed fever, altered mental status, and shortness of breath. Patient underwent surgery and was found to have abdominal compartment syndrome. Daily chest X-ray demonstrated worsening bilateral pulmonary infiltrates concerning for an underlying COVID-19 infection. Patient's wife was positive for COVID-19.

Coronaviruses are known to cause respiratory or intestinal infections in humans and animals. Patient's onset of symptoms is about four to five days after being infected. Our patient may have mistakenly been diagnosed with bronchitis instead of COVID-19 prior to his hospitalization. The combination of a COVID-19 infection with abdominal compartment syndrome gave our patient a poor prognosis. We are hoping our case report will be able to bring more awareness and highlight a rare presentation of COVID-19.

Publisher or Conference

Journal of Infectious Diseases and Epidemiology