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BMC Cardiovasc Disord ; 21(1): 434, 2021 09 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1413998


BACKGROUND: The coronavirus-disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic imposed an unprecedented burden on the provision of cardiac surgical services. The reallocation of workforce and resources necessitated the postponement of elective operations in this cohort of high-risk patients. We investigated the impact of this outbreak on the aortic valve surgery activity at a single two-site centre in the United Kingdom. METHODS: Data were extracted from the local surgical database, including the demographics, clinical characteristics, and outcomes of patients operated on from March 2020 to May 2020 with only one of the two sites resuming operative activity and compared with the respective 2019 period. A similar comparison was conducted with the period between June 2020 and August 2020, when operative activity was restored at both institutional sites. The experience of centres world-wide was invoked to assess the efficiency of our services. RESULTS: There was an initial 38.2% reduction in the total number of operations with a 70% reduction in elective cases, compared with a 159% increase in urgent and emergency operations. The attendant surgical risk was significantly higher [median Euroscore II was 2.7 [1.9-5.2] in 2020 versus 2.1 [0.9-3.7] in 2019 (p = 0.005)] but neither 30-day survival nor freedom from major post-operative complications (re-sternotomy for bleeding/tamponade, transient ischemic attack/stroke, renal replacement therapy) was compromised (p > 0.05 for all comparisons). Recommencement of activity at both institutional sites conferred a surgical volume within 17% of the pre-COVID-19 era. CONCLUSIONS: Our institution managed to offer a considerable volume of aortic valve surgical activity over the first COVID-19 outbreak to a cohort of higher-risk patients, without compromising post-operative outcomes. A backlog of elective cases is expected to develop, the accommodation of which after surgical activity normalisation will be crucial to monitor.

Aortic Valve/surgery , COVID-19 , Cardiac Surgical Procedures/trends , Heart Valve Diseases/surgery , Outcome and Process Assessment, Health Care/trends , Practice Patterns, Physicians'/trends , Surgeons/trends , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Cardiac Surgical Procedures/adverse effects , Cardiac Surgical Procedures/mortality , Databases, Factual , Elective Surgical Procedures/trends , Female , Heart Valve Diseases/mortality , Humans , London , Male , Middle Aged , Patient Safety , Postoperative Complications/etiology , Retrospective Studies , Risk Assessment , Risk Factors , Time Factors , Treatment Outcome