The latest mutations of coronavirus are dodging the RT-PCR tests with many people testing negative despite having symptoms of coronavirus. But at the same time, further investigations related to lungs show that they have contracted the virus. “Seeing the current trend of failed RT-PCR tests, doctors have taken the help of many other effective testing procedures — D-Dimer, CRP, Interleukin-6 among others when reports of patients with symptoms come negative,” said Dr Shuchin Bajaj, founder-director, Ujala Cygnus Group of Hospitals.
These tests are beneficial for monitoring the patient’s progression to Covid-19 related cytokine storm and help in timely medical intervention to reduce fatality. “We believe that the virus is now forming a colony in the lungs leaving the throat and nose, which are very dangerous signs. The latest wave has also led to the new and rare symptoms such as blood clotting, in which case, the-above mentioned tests are required,” Dr Bajaj said.
What is D-Dimer?
D-Dimer is one of the fibrin degradation products. So when a body part is damaged or is bleeding from somewhere, the body tries to stop the bleeding by clumping together the cells there to make a network. That network is formed from a protein called fibrin. So vibrating starts together at the bleeding site and makes a blood clot. That blood clot is due to the crises crossing of fibrin. When the healing is done, or when the body thinks that the cloud is no longer necessary, it starts to degrade that clot and starts breaking down the fibrin. When the fibrin breaks down, it forms fibrin degradation products or FDPs. And one of the FDP is D-Dimer.
Why do we need D-Dimer during COVID?
The test shows the presence of clots in the body when COVID becomes serious. We get a lot of clots in the body in the lung especially, because of which reason the lungs cannot breathe. The blood flow is hampered due to clotting. So, the body tries to break down these clots. D dimer is detectable for up to eight hours after formation until the time the kidney clears it out.
What does the high or low level of D-Dimer mean?
A higher level of D dimer in the body shows that there is a lot of clot presence in the body which can be a dangerous sign when affected with COVID. So we use D-Dimer to assess for severity of COVID disease and if the patient is going to need oxygen in the future, because the higher their D-dimer, higher is the number of clots in the lungs and the higher the chances that they will need oxygen.