Trajectories of post-traumatic stress symptoms, anxiety, and depression in hospitalized COVID-19 patients: A one-month follow-up

Noam Matalon, Shirel Dorman-Ilan, Ilanit Hasson-Ohayon, Nimrod Hertz-Palmor, Shachar Shani, Dana Basel, Raz Gross, Wendy Chen, Ayelet Abramovich, Arnon Afek, Amitai Ziv, Yitshak Kreiss, Itai M. Pessach, Doron Gothelf*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Objectives: Little is known about the mental health outcomes of hospitalized COVID-19 patients. The aims of the study were: (1) to examine the trajectories of anxiety, depression, and pandemic-related stress factors (PRSF) of COVID-19 hospitalized patients one-month following hospitalization; (2) to assess the presence of post-traumatic stress symptoms (PTSS) a month after hospitalization; (3) to identify baseline risk and protective factors that would predict PTSS one month after hospitalization. Methods: We contacted hospitalized COVID-19 patients (n = 64) by phone, at three time-points: during the first days after admission to the hospital (T1); after ~two weeks from the beginning of hospitalization (T2), and one month after hospitalization (T3). At all time-points we assessed the levels of anxiety and depression symptoms, as well as PRSF. At T3, PTSS were assessed. Results: The levels of depressive and anxiety symptoms decreased one-month following hospitalization. Moreover, higher levels of anxiety (standardized β = 1.15, 95% CI = 0.81–1.49, p < 0.001) and depression (β = 0.97, 95% CI = 0.63–1.31 p < 0.001) symptoms during the first week of hospitalization, feeling socially disconnected (β = 0.59, 95% CI = 0.37–0.81 p < 0.001) and experiencing a longer hospitalization period (β = 0.25, 95% CI = 0.03–0.47 p = 0.026) predicted higher PTSS scores a month post-hospitalization. Conclusions: We identified early hospitalization risk factors for the development of PTSS one month after hospitalization that should be targeted to reduce the risk for PTSS.

Original languageEnglish
Article number110399
JournalJournal of Psychosomatic Research
StatePublished - Apr 2021


FundersFunder number
Foundation Dora, Geneva
Kirsh Foundation
Shira Bursztyn
United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation2017369


    • Anxiety
    • COVID-19
    • Depression
    • Mental health
    • PTSS
    • Patients


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