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Open Med (Wars) ; 16(1): 1696-1704, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1511850


The spread of the COVID-19 disease substantially influenced the International Healthcare system, and the national governments worldwide had before long to decide how to manage the available resources, giving priority to the treatment of the COVID-infected patients. Then, in many countries, it was decided to limit the elective procedures to surgical oncology and emergency procedures. In fact, most of the routine, middle-low complexity surgical interventions were reduced, and the day surgery (DS) activities were almost totally interrupted. As a result of this approach, the waiting list of these patients has significantly increased. In the current phase, with a significant decrease in the incidence of COVID-19 cases, the surgical daily activity can be safely and effectively restarted. Adjustments are mandatory to resume the DS activity. The whole separation of pathways with respect to the long-stay and emergency surgery, an accurate preoperative protocol of patient management, with a proper selection and screening of all-day cases, careful scheduling of surgical organization in the operating room, and planning of the postoperative pathway are the goals for a feasible, safe, and effective resumption of DS activity.

AACE Clin Case Rep ; 7(5): 288-292, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1397116


OBJECTIVE: During the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic, procalcitonin (PCT) levels have proven useful in assisting clinicians to diagnose bacterial superinfection. However, in the absence of signs of infection or at the resolution thereof, inappropriately and persistently high PCT levels may suggest and reveal the presence of other pathologies. We report a patient with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 pneumonia with initially elevated PCT levels that persisted during recovery, prompting the diagnosis of medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC). METHODS: A 43-year-old man presented with a 2-day history of fever, sneezing, sore throat, and dry cough. His PCT was 94 ng/mL (normal value, 0.00-0.10 ng/mL), and he was positive for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 RNA. RESULTS: Empirical antibiotic therapy was administered for 7 days, but despite a clinical improvement, serum PCT remained high (84 ng/mL). Serum calcitonin (CTN) was 2120 pg/mL (normal, ≤12 pg/mL). Cytologic examination of thyroid nodules and CTN measurement of the aspiration needle washout confirmed MTC. The patient underwent total thyroidectomy with bilateral cervical lymph node dissection. Lowered CTN (986 pg/mL) and PCT (16 ng/mL) levels were observed 48 hours after surgery. A close follow-up was planned following the results of RET gene analysis. CONCLUSION: PCT can be a useful biochemical marker of MTC suspicion in patients with inflammatory conditions and persistently elevated PCT, even after resolution. In our case, high levels of PCT in a patient with coronavirus disease 2019 pneumonia without signs of bacterial infection led to MTC diagnosis.

Updates Surg ; 73(2): 745-752, 2021 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1002181


Since the beginning of the pandemic due to the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and its related disease, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), several articles reported negative outcomes in surgery of infected patients. Aim of this study is to report results of patients with COVID-19-positive swab, in the perioperative period after surgery. Data of COVID-19-positive patients undergoing emergent or oncological surgery, were collected in a retrospective, multicenter study, which involved 20 Italian institutions. Collected parameters were age, sex, body mass index, COVID-19-related symptoms, patients' comorbidities, surgical procedure, personal protection equipment (PPE) used in operating rooms, rate of postoperative infection among healthcare staff and complications, within 30-postoperative days. 68 patients, who underwent surgery, resulted COVID-19-positive in the perioperative period. Symptomatic patients were 63 (92.5%). Fever was the main symptom in 36 (52.9%) patients, followed by dyspnoea (26.5%) and cough (13.2%). We recorded 22 (32%) intensive care unit admissions, 23 (33.8%) postoperative pulmonary complications and 15 (22%) acute respiratory distress syndromes. As regards the ten postoperative deaths (14.7%), 6 cases were related to surgical complications. One surgeon, one scrub nurse and two circulating nurses were infected after surgery due to the lack of specific PPE. We reported less surgery-related pulmonary complications and mortality in Sars-CoV-2-infected patients, than in literature. Emergent and oncological surgery should not be postponed, but it is mandatory to use full PPE, and to adopt preoperative screenings and strategies that mitigate the detrimental effect of pulmonary complications, mostly responsible for mortality.

COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/epidemiology , Elective Surgical Procedures/mortality , Pneumonia, Viral/complications , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Postoperative Complications/mortality , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/transmission , Emergencies , Female , Humans , Infection Control/organization & administration , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Occupational Exposure/statistics & numerical data , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2