Researchers at Intermountain Healthcare have developed a new clinical tool to accurately identify and diagnose COVID-19 patients who are at high risk of developing a serious inflammatory condition that can damage the lungs and other organs.

The new tool is a diagnostic clinical score that is used to determine whether patients with the virus are at increased risk of developing the condition, known as hyperinflammatory syndrome.

It’s also sometimes referred to as a “cytokine storm” and can cause the immune system to react in an inappropriate and excessive way, causing significant damage to organs.

Diagnosing hyperinflammatory syndrome is very important. With the new scoring diagnostic criteria, clinicians can now identify patients early, and ideally prescribe treatments before the condition progresses and causes patients to deteriorate to critical levels.

Intermountain researchers studied the accuracy of the diagnostic tool as part of a new study published in the British medical journal, The Lancet Rheumatology.

Learn more about the study here.