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Coronavirus patients’ risk of death could be predicted 10 days early

A doctor examines a patient infected by the coronavirus at a hospital in Wuhan, China. STR/AFP via Getty Images

(Aylin Woodward/ Business Insider) — Doctors are struggling to identify which coronavirus patients will develop severe cases that require hospitalization and put them at risk of death.

Newly published research may offer a way to accurately predict a patient’s risk of dying from COVID-19. The authors of a study published Thursday in the journal Nature Machine Intelligence created a model that looks at three biological markers — which can be measured in a drop of blood — that can indicate whether a patient’s case might get dangerously severe more than 10 days ahead of time, with at least 90% accuracy.

Taken together, these three clues could “play a crucial role in distinguishing the vast majority of cases that require immediate medical attention,” the authors wrote, adding that their model “provides a simple and intuitive clinical test to precisely and quickly quantify the risk of death.”

In Wuhan, China, research shows 14%-19% of infected patients became severely sick. Among those critically ill cases, the death rate was higher than 60%. (…)

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