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J Cardiothorac Surg ; 18(1): 96, 2023 Apr 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2248625


The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic disrupted all surgical specialties significantly and exerted additional pressures on the overburdened United Kingdom (UK) National Health Service. Healthcare professionals in the UK have had to adapt their practice. In particular, surgeons have faced organisational and technical challenges treating patients who carried higher risks, were more urgent and could not wait for prehabilitation or optimisation before their intervention. Furthermore, there were implications for blood transfusion with uncertain patterns of demand, reductions in donations and loss of crucial staff because of sickness and public health restrictions. Previous guidelines have attempted to address the control of bleeding and its consequences after cardiothoracic surgery, but there have been no targeted recommendations in light of the recent COVID-19 challenges. In this context, and with a focus on the perioperative period, an expert multidisciplinary Task Force reviewed the impact of bleeding in cardiothoracic surgery, explored different aspects of patient blood management with a focus on the use of haemostats as adjuncts to conventional surgical techniques and proposed best practice recommendations in the UK.

COVID-19 , Specialties, Surgical , Humans , State Medicine , Blood Transfusion , United Kingdom
J R Soc Med ; 115(9): 341-347, 2022 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1673699


OBJECTIVES: In addition to excess mortality due to COVID-19, the pandemic has been characterised by excess mortality due to non-COVID diagnoses and consistent reports of patients delaying seeking medical treatment. This study seeks to compare the outcomes of cardiac surgery during and before the COVID-19 pandemic. DESIGN: Our institutional database was interrogated retrospectively to identify all patients undergoing one of three index procedures during the first six months of the pandemic and the corresponding epochs of the previous five years. SETTING: A regional cardiothoracic centre. PARTICIPANTS: All patients undergoing surgery during weeks #13-37, 2015-2020. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Propensity score weighted analysis was employed to compare the incidence of major complications (stroke, renal failure, re-ventilation), 30-day mortality, six month survival and length of hospital stay between the two groups. RESULTS: There was no difference in 30-day mortality (HR = 0.76 [95% CI 0.27-2.20], p = 0.6211), 6-month survival (HR = 0.94 [95% CI 0.44-2.01], p = 0.8809) and duration of stay (SHR = 1.00 (95% CI 0.90-1.12), p = 0.959) between the two eras. There were no differences in the incidence of major complications (weighted chi-square test: renal failure: p = 0.923, stroke: p = 0.991, new respiratory failure: p = 0.856). CONCLUSIONS: Cardiac surgery is as safe now as in the previous five years. Concerns over the transmission of COVID-19 in hospital are understandable but patients should be encouraged not to delay seeking medical attention. All involved in healthcare and the wider public should be reassured by these findings.

COVID-19 , Cardiac Surgical Procedures , Renal Insufficiency , Stroke , Humans , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , Postoperative Complications/epidemiology , Postoperative Complications/etiology , Length of Stay , Stroke/complications , Renal Insufficiency/complications , Renal Insufficiency/epidemiology