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8th International Conference on Higher Education Advances, HEAd 2022 ; 2022-June:521-529, 2022.
Article in English | Scopus | ID: covidwho-2025027
Int J Oral Maxillofac Surg ; 50(8): 989-993, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-997028


Surgical practice during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has changed significantly, without supporting data. With increasing experience, a dichotomy of practice is emerging, challenging existing consensus guidelines. One such practice is elective tracheostomy. Here, we share our initial experience of head and neck cancer surgery in a COVID-19 tertiary care centre, emphasizing the evolved protocol of perioperative care when compared to pre-COVID-19 times. This was a prospective study of 21 patients with head and neck cancers undergoing surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic, compared to 193 historical controls. Changes in anaesthesia, surgery, and operating room practices were evaluated. A strict protocol was followed. One patient tested positive for COVID-19 preoperatively. There was a significant increase in pre-induction tracheostomies (28.6% vs 6.7%, P=0.005), median hospital stay (10 vs 7 days, P=0.001), and postponements of surgery (57.1% vs 27.5%, P=0.01), along with a significant decrease in flap reconstructions (33.3% vs 59.6%, P=0.03). There was no mortality and no difference in postoperative morbidity. No healthcare personnel became symptomatic for COVID-19 during this period. Tracheostomy is safe during the COVID-19 pandemic and rates have increased. Despite increased rescheduling of surgeries and longer hospital stays, definitive cancer care surgery has not been deferred and maximum patient and healthcare worker safety has been ensured.

COVID-19 , Head and Neck Neoplasms , Head and Neck Neoplasms/surgery , Humans , Pandemics , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Tracheostomy