Clustering of clinical and echocardiographic phenotypes of covid-19 patients

Eran Shpigelman, Aviram Hochstadt, Dan Coster, Ilan Merdler, Eihab Ghantous, Yishay Szekely, Yael Lichter, Philippe Taieb, Ariel Banai, Orly Sapir, Yoav Granot, Lior Lupu, Ariel Borohovitz, Sapir Sadon, Shmuel Banai, Ronen Rubinshtein, Yan Topilsky, Ron Shamir*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We sought to divide COVID-19 patients into distinct phenotypical subgroups using echocardiography and clinical markers to elucidate the pathogenesis of the disease and its heterogeneous cardiac involvement. A total of 506 consecutive patients hospitalized with COVID-19 infection underwent complete evaluation, including echocardiography, at admission. A k-prototypes algorithm applied to patients' clinical and imaging data at admission partitioned the patients into four phenotypical clusters: Clusters 0 and 1 were younger and healthier, 2 and 3 were older with worse cardiac indexes, and clusters 1 and 3 had a stronger inflammatory response. The clusters manifested very distinct survival patterns (C-index for the Cox proportional hazard model 0.77), with survival best for cluster 0, intermediate for 1–2 and worst for 3. Interestingly, cluster 1 showed a harsher disease course than cluster 2 but with similar survival. Clusters obtained with echocardiography were more predictive of mortality than clusters obtained without echocardiography. Additionally, several echocardiography variables (E′ lat, E′ sept, E/e average) showed high discriminative power among the clusters. The results suggested that older infected males have a higher chance to deteriorate than older infected females. In conclusion, COVID-19 manifests differently for distinctive clusters of patients. These clusters reflect different disease manifestations and prognoses. Although including echocardiography improved the predictive power, its marginal contribution over clustering using clinical parameters only does not justify the burden of echocardiography data collection.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8832
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2023


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