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Minerva Surg ; 77(1): 14-21, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1337897


BACKGROUND: COVID-19 pandemic has impacted professional, economic and social activities. In the surgical field, it has brought changes to operating activities, the organization of workforces, the protection measures for patients and personnel against possible intraoperative transmissions as well as training young surgeons. This study intends to assess the extent of this impact in our institution. METHODS: The patients operated on in nine Operating Units (OUs) in the period February 1 - March 31, 2020, with follow-ups on April 30, 2020, were evaluated both retrospectively and prospectively. Organizational, clinical and impact parameters on staff were evaluated. RESULTS: Of the 833 consecutive admitted patients, 742 were operated on, 705 of whom were recruited for the study. Compared to the same period in 2019 there was a decrease in the number of operations (742 compared to 1187), similar use of intensive care unit (ICU), a diagnostic activity only for symptomatic patients, heterogeneity in organizational behaviors, an impact on staff who highlighted concerns about getting sick or passing the infection on to others (87.64%) or their family members (75.14%). CONCLUSIONS: The present study made it possible to detect the need to make significant changes in the clinical, organizational and teaching fields, for which some operational proposals are suggested.

COVID-19 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Pandemics/prevention & control , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
Eur J Ophthalmol ; : 11206721211015576, 2021 May 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1225747


INTRODUCTION: Few months after the COVID-19 pandemic burst, many aspects of the human life, including education, dramatically changed. Because of the lockdown measures taken to limit the virus spread in Italy, in-person teaching and learning have been interrupted in all health care disciplines and readapted in virtual formulae. METHODS: As academic ophthalmology departments, we had to maintain the educational needs of medical and orthoptic students, internships, surgical training of residents, as well as to cover the scientific update of health care personnel (HCPs), and the continuation of research and academic activities. To assure these needs we ideated an educational strategy and a team, which was then translated on a multichannel virtual platform created with Microsoft Teams. RESULTS: In this platform there were 21 channels organized in a public view mode, open to all Team members, or in private view mode to separate non-permanent HCPs, internships, residents, and students' tasks, from permanent HCPs tasks. Virtual channels were dedicated to provide theoretical lessons, clinical cases, surgical video, internal meetings and webinar, to offer news from scientific societies, requests of appointments from biomedical companies, links with ophthalmological websites, to move forward research projects, to participate at institutional academic duties, and to obtain feedbacks from users. Residents continued their training on surgery using a surgical simulator, after consulting an agenda uploaded into the dedicated virtual channel. CONCLUSION: These positive initial results should represent a boost to rapidly proceed with the development of even more versatile virtual learning solutions, given that the forecasts for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic are not encouraging.

Biology (Basel) ; 9(11)2020 Nov 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-965887


The pandemic virus SARS-CoV-2 has been reported to be able to enter the body via the eye conjunctiva, but the presence of antiviral response in the eye remains poorly known. Our study was thus aimed to analyze the presence of secretory mucosal anti-SARS-CoV-2 type A immunoglobulins (IgA) in the conjunctival fluid of COVID-19 patients. The tears of 28 COVID-19 patients and 20 uninfected controls were collected by the Schirmer test and analyzed by a specific ELISA assay detecting anti-spike (S1) virus protein IgA. The results showed that 35.7% of COVID-19 subjects have specific antiviral IgA at the ocular level, persisting till 48 days post disease onset. Most of the IgA positive subjects presented mild symptoms. The collected data indicate a prolonged persistence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgA at the eye level and suggest that IgA detection may be extremely helpful in clarifying virus pathology and epidemiology.

Microorganisms ; 8(8)2020 Aug 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-717751


Until less than two decades ago, all known human coronaviruses (CoV) caused diseases so mild that they did not stimulate further advanced CoV research. In 2002 and following years, the scenario changed dramatically with the advent of the new more pathogenic CoVs, including Severe Acute Respiratory Syndome (SARS-CoV-1), Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (MERS)-CoV, and the new zoonotic SARS-CoV-2, likely originated from bat species and responsible for the present coronavirus disease (COVID-19), which to date has caused 15,581,007 confirmed cases and 635,173 deaths in 208 countries, including Italy. SARS-CoV-2 transmission is mainly airborne via droplets generated by symptomatic patients, and possibly asymptomatic individuals during incubation of the disease, although for the latter, there are no certain data yet. However, research on asymptomatic viral infection is currently ongoing worldwide to elucidate the real prevalence and mortality of the disease. From a clinical point of view, COVID-19 would be defined as "COVID Planet " because it presents as a multifaceted disease, due to the large number of organs and tissues infected by the virus. Overall, based on the available published data, 80.9% of patients infected by SARS-CoV-2 develop a mild disease/infection, 13.8% severe pneumonia, 4.7% respiratory failure, septic shock, or multi-organ failure, and 3% of these cases are fatal, but mortality parameter is highly variable in different countries. Clinically, SARS-CoV-2 causes severe primary interstitial viral pneumonia and a "cytokine storm syndrome", characterized by a severe and fatal uncontrolled systemic inflammatory response triggered by the activation of interleukin 6 (IL-6) with development of endothelitis and generalized thrombosis that can lead to organ failure and death. Risk factors include advanced age and comorbidities including hypertension, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Virus entry occurs via binding the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor present in almost all tissues and organs through the Spike (S) protein. Currently, SARS-CoV-2 infection is prevented by the use of masks, social distancing, and improved hand hygiene measures. This review summarizes the current knowledge on the main biological and clinical features of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, also focusing on the principal measures taken in some Italian regions to face the emergency and on the most important treatments used to manage the COVID-19 pandemic.