Hematology testing can be potential diagnostic biomarker in predicting severity of COVID-19 in India, says GlobalData

With the rapid increase in the number of COVID-19 cases across India, identifying the critically ill COVID-19 patients in the early stage of infection can help in assessing the risk stratification and clinical management. Critically ill patients will show a progressive decrease in peripheral blood lymphocytes and this could be a predictive marker in identifying who may be admitted into the ICU, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

According to GlobalData’s Medical Intelligence Database, hematology tests market in India is expected to exceed US$250m in 2025. In 2019, complete blood count tests accounted for more than 80% of the hematology tests market. Hematology tests market is highly fragmented in India with Sysmex Corp, Horiba Ltd, F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd, and Abbott Laboratories being the major players.

Gundreddy Gopinadh, Medical Devices Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Hematology testing is the most routine inexpensive test conducted for clinical decision making to treat various diseases that may be affecting blood such as infections, hemophilia, anemia and leukemia.”

Infection is the most common cause for the decrease of lymphocytes and a significant increase in neutrophil count in infected patients. Neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio along with a patient’s age can be used as a biomarker to predict the severity of the COVID-19 progression.

Mr Gopinadh concludes: “Hematology testing as prognostic marker and monitoring parameter in the clinical management of COVID-19 patients could benefit the clinicians to predict the severity of COVID-19 patients. This can provide early clinical intervention to reduce the patient mortality and also help in making prudent allocation of medical resources to benefit most number of patients and to minimize the damage of COVID-19 pandemic.”

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