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1.
Am J Otolaryngol ; 43(5): 103525, 2022 Jun 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1944084

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To investigate perspectives of patients, family members, caregivers (PFC), and healthcare professionals (HCP) on tracheostomy care during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: The cross-sectional survey investigating barriers and facilitators to tracheostomy care was collaboratively developed by patients, family members, nurses, speech-language pathologists, respiratory care practitioners, physicians, and surgeons. The survey was distributed to the Global Tracheostomy Collaborative's learning community, and responses were analyzed. RESULTS: Survey respondents (n = 191) from 17 countries included individuals with a tracheostomy (85 [45 %]), families/caregivers (43 [22 %]), and diverse HCP (63 [33.0 %]). Overall, 94 % of respondents reported concern that patients with tracheostomy were at increased risk of critical illness from SARS-CoV-2 infection and COVID-19; 93 % reported fear or anxiety. With respect to prioritization of care, 38 % of PFC versus 16 % of HCP reported concern that patients with tracheostomies might not be valued or prioritized (p = 0.002). Respondents also differed in fear of contracting COVID-19 (69 % PFC vs. 49 % HCP group, p = 0.009); concern for hospitalization (55.5 % PFC vs. 27 % HCP, p < 0.001); access to medical personnel (34 % PFC vs. 14 % HCP, p = 0.005); and concern about canceled appointments (62 % PFC vs. 41 % HCP, p = 0.01). Respondents from both groups reported severe stress and fatigue, sleep deprivation, lack of breaks, and lack of support (70 % PFC vs. 65 % HCP, p = 0.54). Virtual telecare seldom met perceived needs. CONCLUSION: PFC with a tracheostomy perceived most risks more acutely than HCP in this global sample. Broad stakeholder engagement is necessary to achieve creative, patient-driven solutions to maintain connection, communication, and access for patients with a tracheostomy.

2.
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 2022 Jun 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1905764
3.
Curr Neuropharmacol ; 2022 Apr 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1809148

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Olfactory training is the only evidence-based treatment for post viral olfactory dysfunction. Smell disorders after SARS-CoV-2 infection have been attributed to neuroinflammatory events within the olfactory bulb and the central nervous system. Therefore, targeting neuroinflammation is one potential strategy for promoting recovery from post-COVID-19 chronic olfactory dysfunction. Palmitoylethanolamide and luteolin (PEA-LUT) are candidate anti-inflammatory/ neuroprotective agents. OBJECTIVE: To investigate recovery of olfactory function in patients treated with PEA-LUT oral supplements plus olfactory training versus olfactory training plus placebo. METHODS: Multicenter double-blinded randomized placebo-controlled clinical trial. Eligible subjects had prior COVID-19 and persistent olfactory impairment >6 months after follow-up SARS-CoV-2 negative testing, without prior history of olfactory dysfunction sinonasal disorders. Participants were randomized to daily oral supplementation with ultramicronized PEA-LUT 770 mg plus olfactory training (intervention group) or olfactory training with placebo (control). Sniffin' Sticks assessments were used to test the patients at baseline and 90 days. RESULTS: A total of 185 patients, including intervention (130) and control (55) were enrolled. The intervention group showed significantly greater improvement in olfactory threshold, discrimination, and identification scores compared to controls (p=0.0001). Overall, 92% of patients in the intervention group improved versus 42% of controls. Magnitude of recovery was significantly greater in the intervention group versus control (12.8 + 8.2 versus mean 3.2 + 3), with >10-fold higher prevalence of anosmia in control versus intervention groups at the 90-day endpoint. CONCLUSION: Among individuals with olfactory dysfunction post COVID-19, combining PEA-LUT with olfactory training resulted in greater recovery of smell than olfactory training alone. (ITALIAN; Clinicaltrials.gov number: NCT04853836).

6.
Br J Anaesth ; 128(4): e282-e284, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1670223
8.
Brain Sci ; 12(2)2022 Jan 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1650062

ABSTRACT

Smell alteration and cognitive impairment are common features of the Long-COVID Syndrome. Mental clouding, often described as brain fog, might affect smell by altering recollection of odors or through a share mechanism of neuroinflammation. We investigated mental clouding, headache, and cognitive function in adult patients with persistent COVID-19 olfactory dysfunction. This multi-center cross-sectional study enrolled 152 adults with self-reported olfactory dysfunction from 3 tertiary centers specialized in COVID-19 olfactory disorders. Inclusion criteria were smell alterations after COVID-19 persisting over 6 months from infection, age >18 and < 65. Exclusion criteria included smell alterations, headache, or memory problems prior to COVID-19 infection. The patients were evaluated by olfactometry, nasal endoscopy, headache scale, cognitive assessment, Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), and self-reported measures. Smell dysfunction was stratified and classified based on olfactory deficit severity and presence of olfactory distortion (parosmia, cacosmia). Data on smell disorder, mental clouding, MMSE, and headache were analyzed to assess correlations. Among the 152 patients studied, 50 (32.8%) presented with anosmia, 25 (16.4%) with hyposmia, 10 (6.6%) with parosmia/cacosmia, and 58 patients (38.2%) with a combination of hyposmia and parosmia; seven (4.6%) patients suffered from headache exclusively, and two (1.4%) had headache and mental clouding as their primary symptom. Headache was reported by 76 (50%) patients, and mental clouding by 71 (46.7%). The patients reporting headache, mental clouding, or both, had significantly increased risk of suffering from anosmia and/or hyposmia when compared with their counterparts without these neurological symptoms. No patients had reduced MMSE scores. In our cohort of adult patients with post-COVID-19, smell alterations persisting over 6 months, cognitive impairment and headache were associated with more severe olfactory loss, consistent with neuroinflammatory mechanisms mediating a variety of Long-COVID symptoms.

9.
Am J Otolaryngol ; 43(2): 103354, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1588361

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Investigate healthcare providers, caregivers, and patient perspectives on tracheostomy care barriers during COVID-19. STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional anonymous survey SETTING: Global Tracheostomy Collaborative Learning Community METHODS: A 17-item questionnaire was electronically distributed, assessing demographic and occupational data; challenges in ten domains of tracheostomy care; and perceptions regarding knowledge and preparedness for navigating the COVID-19 pandemic. RESULTS: Respondents (n = 115) were from 20 countries, consisting of patients/caregivers (10.4%) and healthcare professionals (87.0%), including primarily otolaryngologists (20.9%), nurses (24.3%), speech-language pathologists (18.3%), respiratory therapists (11.3%), and other physicians (12.2%). The most common tracheostomy care problem was inability to communicate (33.9%), followed by mucus plugging and wound care. Need for information on how to manage cuffs and initiate speech trials was rated highly by most respondents, along with other technical and knowledge areas. Access to care and disposable supplies were also prominent concerns, reflecting competition between community needs for routine tracheostomy supplies and shortages in intensive care units. Integrated teamwork was reported in 40 to 67% of respondents, depending on geography. Forty percent of respondents reported concern regarding personal protective equipment (PPE), and 70% emphasized proper PPE use. CONCLUSION: While safety concerns, centering on personal protective equipment and pandemic resources are prominent concerns in COVID-19 tracheostomy care, patient-centered concerns must also be prioritized. Communication and speech, adequate supplies, and care standards are critical considerations in tracheostomy. Stakeholders in tracheostomy care can partner to identify creative solutions for delays in restoring communication, supply disruptions, and reduced access to tracheostomy care in both inpatient and community settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communication , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Tracheostomy
10.
Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 166(6): 1192-1195, 2022 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1571581

ABSTRACT

The Centralized Otolaryngology Research Efforts (CORE) grant program coordinates research funding initiatives across the subspecialties of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery. Modeled after National Institutes of Health study sections, CORE grant review processes provide comprehensive reviews of scientific proposals. The organizational structure and grant review process support grant-writing skills, attention to study design, and other components of academic maturation toward securing external grants from the National Institutes of Health or other agencies. As a learning community and a catalyst for scientific advances, CORE evaluates clinical, translational, basic science, and health services research. Amid the societal reckoning around long-standing social injustices and health inequities, an important question is to what extent CORE engenders diversity, equity, and inclusion for the otolaryngology workforce. This commentary explores CORE's track record as a stepping-stone for promoting equity and innovation in the specialty. Such insights can help maximize opportunities for cultivating diverse leaders across the career continuum.


Subject(s)
Biomedical Research , Medicine , Otolaryngology , Financing, Organized , Humans , National Institutes of Health (U.S.) , United States , Workforce
12.
Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; : 1945998211064275, 2021 Dec 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1556869

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To offer pragmatic, evidence-informed advice on administering corticosteroids in otolaryngology during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, considering therapeutic efficacy, potential adverse effects, susceptibility to COVID-19, and potential effects on efficacy of vaccination against SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19. DATA SOURCES: PubMed, Cochrane Library, EMBASE, CINAHL, and guideline databases. REVIEW METHODS: Guideline search strategies, supplemented by database searches on sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSNHL), idiopathic facial nerve paralysis (Bell's palsy), sinonasal polyposis, laryngotracheal disorders, head and neck oncology, and pediatric otolaryngology, prioritizing systematic reviews, randomized controlled trials, and COVID-19-specific findings. CONCLUSIONS: Systemic corticosteroids (SCSs) reduce long-term morbidity in individuals with SSNHL and Bell's palsy, reduce acute laryngotracheal edema, and have benefit in perioperative management for some procedures. Topical or locally injected corticosteroids are preferable for most other otolaryngologic indications. SCSs have not shown long-term benefit for sinonasal disorders. SCSs are not a contraindication to vaccination with COVID-19 vaccines approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention noted that these vaccines are safe for immunocompromised patients. IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: SCS use for SSNHL, Bell's palsy, laryngotracheal edema, and perioperative care should follow prepandemic standards. Local or topical corticosteroids are preferable for most other otolaryngologic indications. Whether SCSs attenuate response to vaccination against COVID-19 or increase susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 infection is unknown. Immunosuppression may lower vaccine efficacy, so immunocompromised patients should adhere to recommended infection control practices. COVID-19 vaccination with Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson vaccines is safe for immunocompromised patients.

16.
J Intensive Care Med ; 36(12): 1513-1515, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1455880
18.
J Thorac Dis ; 13(7): 4137-4145, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1344631

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Whereas data from the pre-pandemic era have demonstrated that tracheostomy can accelerate liberation from the ventilator, reduce need for sedation, and facilitate rehabilitation, concerns for healthcare worker safety have led to disagreement on tracheostomy placement in COVID-19 patients. Data on COVID-19 patients undergoing tracheostomy may inform best practices. Thus, we report a retrospective institutional cohort experience with tracheostomy in ventilated patients with COVID-19, examining associations between time to tracheostomy and duration of mechanical ventilation in relation to patient characteristics, clinical course, and survival. METHODS: Clinical data were extracted for all COVID-19 tracheostomies performed at a quaternary referral center from April-July 2020. Outcomes studied included mortality, adverse events, duration of mechanical ventilation, and time to decannulation. RESULTS: Among 64 COVID-19 tracheostomies (13% of COVID-19 hospitalizations), patients were 64% male and 42% African American, with a median age of 54 (range, 20-89). Median time to tracheostomy was 22 (range, 7-60) days and median duration of mechanical ventilation was 39.4 (range, 20-113) days. Earlier tracheostomy was associated with shortened mechanical ventilation (R2=0.4, P<0.01). Median decannulation time was 35.3 (range, 7-79) days. There was 19% mortality and adverse events in 45%, mostly from bleeding in therapeutically anticoagulated patients. CONCLUSIONS: Tracheostomy was associated with swifter liberation from the ventilator and acceptable safety for physicians in this series of critically ill COVID-19 patients. Patient mortality was not increased relative to historical data on acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Future studies are required to establish conclusions of causality regarding tracheostomy timing with mechanical ventilation, complications, or mortality in COVID-19 patients.

19.
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 147(7): 678-679, 2021 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1340220
20.
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 147(9): 797-803, 2021 09 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1320055

ABSTRACT

Importance: During respiratory disease outbreaks such as the COVID-19 pandemic, aerosol-generating procedures, including tracheostomy, are associated with the risk of viral transmission to health care workers. Objective: To quantify particle aerosolization during tracheostomy surgery and tracheostomy care and to evaluate interventions that minimize the risk of viral particle exposure. Design, Setting, and Participants: This comparative effectiveness study was conducted from August 2020 to January 2021 at a tertiary care academic institution. Aerosol generation was measured in real time with an optical particle counter during simulated (manikin) tracheostomy surgical and clinical conditions, including cough, airway nebulization, open suctioning, and electrocautery. Aerosol sampling was also performed during in vivo swine tracheostomy procedures (n = 4), with or without electrocautery. Fluorescent dye was used to visualize cough spread onto the surgical field during swine tracheostomy. Finally, 6 tracheostomy coverings were compared with no tracheostomy covering to quantify reduction in particle aerosolization. Main Outcomes and Measures: Respirable aerosolized particle concentration. Results: Cough, airway humidification, open suctioning, and electrocautery produced aerosol particles substantially above baseline. Compared with uncovered tracheostomy, decreased aerosolization was found with the use of tracheostomy coverings, including a cotton mask (73.8% [(95% CI, 63.0%-84.5%]; d = 3.8), polyester gaiter 79.5% [95% CI, 68.7%-90.3%]; d = 7.2), humidification mask (82.8% [95% CI, 72.0%-93.7%]; d = 8.6), heat moisture exchanger (HME) (91.0% [95% CI, 80.2%-101.7%]; d = 19.0), and surgical mask (89.9% [95% CI, 79.3%-100.6%]; d = 12.8). Simultaneous use of a surgical mask and HME decreased the particle concentration compared with either the HME (95% CI, 1.6%-12.3%; Cohen d = 1.2) or surgical mask (95% CI, 2.7%-13.2%; d = 1.9) used independently. Procedures performed with electrocautery increased total aerosolized particles by 1500 particles/m3 per 5-second interval (95% CI, 1380-1610 particles/m3 per 5-second interval; d = 1.8). Conclusions and Relevance: The findings of this laboratory and animal comparative effectiveness study indicate that tracheostomy surgery and tracheostomy care are associated with significant aerosol generation, putting health care workers at risk for viral transmission of airborne diseases. Combined HME and surgical mask coverage of the tracheostomy was associated with decreased aerosolization, thereby reducing the risk of viral transmission to health care workers.


Subject(s)
Aerosols , Infection Control/methods , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Medical Staff, Hospital , Tracheostomy/adverse effects , Virion , Animals , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Comparative Effectiveness Research , Electrocoagulation/adverse effects , Hot Temperature , Humans , Humidity , Manikins , Masks , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Swine , Tracheostomy/instrumentation
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