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1.
Acta Neurol Belg ; 121(5): 1251-1258, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1274981

ABSTRACT

A worldwide decline in stroke hospitalizations during the COVID-19 pandemic has been reported. Information on stroke care during the pandemic in Belgium is lacking. This study aims to analyze the impact of COVID-19 on acute stroke care in eight Belgian stroke centers. This Belgian study is part of an international observational and retrospective study in 70 countries and 457 stroke centers. We compared volumes of COVID-19 and stroke hospitalizations, intravenous thrombolysis and endovascular treatment rates, acute treatment time intervals and functional outcome at 90 days during the first wave of the pandemic to two control intervals (March-May 2019 and December-February 2020). From March 2020 to May 2020, 860 stroke patients were hospitalized. In the same time period, 2850 COVID-19 patients were admitted, of which 37 (1.3%) were diagnosed with a stroke. Compared to the months prior to the pandemic and the same time epoch one year earlier, stroke hospitalizations were reduced (relative difference 15.9% [p = 0.03] and 14.5% [p = 0.05], respectively). Despite a reduction in absolute volumes, there was no difference in the monthly proportion of thrombolysis or endovascular treatment provided to the overall stroke hospitalizations. Acute treatment time metrics did not change between COVID-19 pandemic and control time epochs. We found no difference in 90-day functional outcomes nor in mortality after stroke between patients admitted during the pandemic versus control periods. We found a decline in the volume of stroke hospitalizations during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Belgium. Stroke care quality parameters remained unchanged.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Stroke/epidemiology , Belgium , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
2.
Neurology ; 96(23): e2824-e2838, 2021 06 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1261288

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To measure the global impact of COVID-19 pandemic on volumes of IV thrombolysis (IVT), IVT transfers, and stroke hospitalizations over 4 months at the height of the pandemic (March 1 to June 30, 2020) compared with 2 control 4-month periods. METHODS: We conducted a cross-sectional, observational, retrospective study across 6 continents, 70 countries, and 457 stroke centers. Diagnoses were identified by their ICD-10 codes or classifications in stroke databases. RESULTS: There were 91,373 stroke admissions in the 4 months immediately before compared to 80,894 admissions during the pandemic months, representing an 11.5% (95% confidence interval [CI] -11.7 to -11.3, p < 0.0001) decline. There were 13,334 IVT therapies in the 4 months preceding compared to 11,570 procedures during the pandemic, representing a 13.2% (95% CI -13.8 to -12.7, p < 0.0001) drop. Interfacility IVT transfers decreased from 1,337 to 1,178, or an 11.9% decrease (95% CI -13.7 to -10.3, p = 0.001). Recovery of stroke hospitalization volume (9.5%, 95% CI 9.2-9.8, p < 0.0001) was noted over the 2 later (May, June) vs the 2 earlier (March, April) pandemic months. There was a 1.48% stroke rate across 119,967 COVID-19 hospitalizations. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection was noted in 3.3% (1,722/52,026) of all stroke admissions. CONCLUSIONS: The COVID-19 pandemic was associated with a global decline in the volume of stroke hospitalizations, IVT, and interfacility IVT transfers. Primary stroke centers and centers with higher COVID-19 inpatient volumes experienced steeper declines. Recovery of stroke hospitalization was noted in the later pandemic months.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Stroke , Cross-Sectional Studies , Hospitalization , Humans , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Stroke/drug therapy , Stroke/epidemiology , Thrombolytic Therapy
3.
Neurology ; 96(23): e2824-e2838, 2021 06 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1154058

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To measure the global impact of COVID-19 pandemic on volumes of IV thrombolysis (IVT), IVT transfers, and stroke hospitalizations over 4 months at the height of the pandemic (March 1 to June 30, 2020) compared with 2 control 4-month periods. METHODS: We conducted a cross-sectional, observational, retrospective study across 6 continents, 70 countries, and 457 stroke centers. Diagnoses were identified by their ICD-10 codes or classifications in stroke databases. RESULTS: There were 91,373 stroke admissions in the 4 months immediately before compared to 80,894 admissions during the pandemic months, representing an 11.5% (95% confidence interval [CI] -11.7 to -11.3, p < 0.0001) decline. There were 13,334 IVT therapies in the 4 months preceding compared to 11,570 procedures during the pandemic, representing a 13.2% (95% CI -13.8 to -12.7, p < 0.0001) drop. Interfacility IVT transfers decreased from 1,337 to 1,178, or an 11.9% decrease (95% CI -13.7 to -10.3, p = 0.001). Recovery of stroke hospitalization volume (9.5%, 95% CI 9.2-9.8, p < 0.0001) was noted over the 2 later (May, June) vs the 2 earlier (March, April) pandemic months. There was a 1.48% stroke rate across 119,967 COVID-19 hospitalizations. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection was noted in 3.3% (1,722/52,026) of all stroke admissions. CONCLUSIONS: The COVID-19 pandemic was associated with a global decline in the volume of stroke hospitalizations, IVT, and interfacility IVT transfers. Primary stroke centers and centers with higher COVID-19 inpatient volumes experienced steeper declines. Recovery of stroke hospitalization was noted in the later pandemic months.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Stroke , Cross-Sectional Studies , Hospitalization , Humans , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Stroke/drug therapy , Stroke/epidemiology , Thrombolytic Therapy
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