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J Laparoendosc Adv Surg Tech A ; 31(3): 266-272, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-720927


Background: COVID-19 pandemic rendered the surgical approach as well as the surgical indication very complex due to the outstanding consumption of public health system' resources, especially in the intensive care subdivision. A multidisciplinary team-based strategy is necessary to adapt guidelines and medical practices to the actual situation. The aim of this study is to evaluate the changes in the therapeutic algorithm in a small group of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) enlisted for surgery during the COVID-19 outbreak. Materials and Methods: A multidisciplinary strategy has been adopted to allocate HCC patients to a treatment that permitted to reduce the risk of complications and the hospital stay, thus preventing contamination by the virus. Nasopharyngeal swab and a chest radiograph were performed in all patients within 48 hours before the surgical procedure: in the suspected cases with negative COVID tests, we prudently postponed surgery and repeated the diagnostic tests after 15 days. Results: During the emergency state, 11 HCC patients were treated (8 laparoscopic ablations and 3 hepatic resections). We reported only 1 postoperative complication (hemothorax) and 1 death during the follow-up for COVID pneumonia. Comparing our performances with those in the same time frame in the past 4 years, we treated a similar number of HCC patients, obtaining a decrease in operative timing (P = .0409) and hospital stay (P = .0412) (Fig. 2b) with similar rates of immediate postoperative complications, without ICU admissions. Conclusions: An adapted algorithm for the treatment of HCC to COVID outbreak permitted to manage safely these patients by identifying those most at risk of evolution of the neoplastic disease.

COVID-19/epidemiology , Carcinoma, Hepatocellular/surgery , Disease Management , Guideline Adherence , Hepatectomy/methods , Laparoscopy/methods , Liver Neoplasms/surgery , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Carcinoma, Hepatocellular/epidemiology , Comorbidity , Female , Humans , Length of Stay , Liver Neoplasms/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Operative Time , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2