OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the relationship between SARS-CoV-2 infection and liver injury by comparing transaminase concentrations among children tested for SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses in pediatric emergency departments. DESIGN & METHODS: Eligible children were <18 years with suspected sars-cov-2, tested using molecular approaches in emergency departments between march 7, 2020, and june 15, 2021 (pediatric emergency research network), and between august 6, 2020, and february 22, 2022 (pediatric emergency research canada). we compared aspartate (ast) and alanine aminotransferase (alt) concentrations at presentation for sars-cov-2 and other respiratory viruses through a multivariate linear regression model, with the natural log of serum transaminase concentrations as dependent variables. results: of 16,892 enrolled children, 2,462 (14.6%) had transaminase concentrations measured; 4318 (25.6%) were sars-cov-2 positive, and 3932 (23.3%) were tested for additional respiratory viruses. among study participants who had additional respiratory virus testing performed, the most frequently identified viruses were enterovirus rhinovirus [8.7% (343 3,932)], respiratory syncytial virus [4.6% (181 3,932)], and adenovirus [2.6% (103 3,932)]. transaminase concentrations were elevated in 25.6% (54 211) of children with isolated sars-cov-2 detection and 21.6% (117 541) of those with no virus isolated; p =" 0.25." in the multivariable model, isolated sars-cov-2 detection was not associated with elevated alt (adjusted geometric mean ratio (iu l): 0.96; 95%confidence interval (ci): 0.84, 1.08) or ast (adjusted geometric mean ratio (iu l): 1.03; 95%ci: 0.92, 1.16) concentrations, with negative respiratory panel as the referent group. ninety-day follow-up was completed in 82.2% (3,550 4,318) of sars-cov-2 positive children; no cases of new-onset liver disease were reported. conclusion: among those tested, transaminase concentrations did not vary between sars-cov-2-positive children and those with a negative respiratory viral panel. in multivariate analysis, sars-cov-2 infection was not associated with increased initial transaminase concentrations compared to other respiratory viruses.>

DOI 10.1016/J.CLINBIOCHEM.2023.110588