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Rofo ; 194(6): 625-633, 2022 06.
Article in English, German | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1599667


PURPOSE: To analyze the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 on the radiological imaging volume in Germany. MATERIALS UND METHODS: In this retrospective multicenter study, we analyzed CT and MRI examinations of 7 radiology institutes across Germany from January to December 2020. The imaging volume was compared to 2019 (Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney test). Modality, patient service locations, and examined body parts were assessed in consideration of time periods of the pandemic. In addition, correlation with the incidence of SARS-CoV-2 cases and associated death was performed (Spearman-test). RESULTS: In total, in 2020, imaging volume declined by 4 % (n = 8314) compared with 2019 (p < 0.05). The hard lockdown during the first pandemic wave (calendar week 12-16, March 22 - April 19) revealed the highest decrease with 29 % (n = 894, p < 0.01), with the greatest decrease in CT (36 % vs. MRI 26 %), outpatients (38 %, p < 0.01), and imaging of the spine and extremities (51-72 %, < 0.05 - p < 0.01). Examinations referred from the emergency department (-13 %, p < 0.05) and CT of the chest (-16 %, p < 0.05) were least affected. With the end of the first wave, gradual normalization of the imaging volume was observed and persisted until the end of the observation period. A reduction of imaging volume negatively correlated with the incidence of SARS-CoV-2-positive cases and associated deaths (r = 0.28 and 0.49, p < 0.05 and p < 0.001). CONCLUSION: The COVID-19 pandemic was associated with a significant temporary decline in imaging volume. After the first lockdown period, a quick recovery was observed with radiologic imaging examinations steadily approaching prior-year figures. KEY POINTS: · This study assesses the impact of dynamic pandemic activity on radiological imaging in a multicenter analysis in Germany.. · The COVID-19 pandemic was associated with a temporary decline in CT and MRI scans.. · Relaxation of restrictions was associated with fast normalization of imaging volumes to prior-year levels, which persisted until the end of the year.. · Significant catch-up effects were not observed.. CITATION FORMAT: · Schmidbauer M, Grenacher L, Juchems MS et al. Impact of the COVID 19 Pandemic on Radiological Imaging in Germany. Fortschr Röntgenstr 2022; 194: 625 - 633.

COVID-19 , Radiology , Communicable Disease Control , Germany/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
Rofo ; 193(11): 1336-1338, 2021 Nov.
Article in German | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1266012

COVID-19 , Fires , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
Healthcare (Basel) ; 9(5)2021 Apr 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1202061


(1) Background: Healthcare workers (HCWs) are prone to intensified exposure to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection in the ongoing pandemic. We prospectively analyzed the prevalence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 in HCWs at baseline and follow up with regard to clinical signs and symptoms in two university hospitals in Brandenburg, Germany. (2) Methods: Screening for anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgA and IgG antibodies was offered to HCWs at baseline and follow up two months thereafter in two hospitals of Brandenburg Medical School during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Germany in an ongoing observational cohort study. Medical history and signs and symptoms were recorded by questionnaires and analyzed. (3) Results: Baseline seroprevalence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgA was 11.7% and increased to 15% at follow up, whereas IgG seropositivity was 2.1% at baseline and 2.2% at follow up. The rate of asymptomatic seropositive cases was 39.5%. Symptoms were not associated with general seropositivity for anti-SARS-CoV-2; however, class switch from IgA to IgG was associated with increased symptom burden. (4) Conclusions: The seroprevalence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 was low in HCWs but higher compared to population data and increased over time. Screening for antibodies detected a significant proportion of seropositive participants cases without symptoms.

BMC Emerg Med ; 21(1): 42, 2021 04 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1169949


BACKGROUND: Recent studies have shown a decrease of admissions to accident and emergency (A&E) departments after the local outbreaks of COVID-19. However, differential trends of admission counts, for example according to diagnosis, are less well understood. This information is crucial to inform targeted intervention. Therefore, we aimed to compare admission counts in German A&E departments before and after 12th march in 2020 with 2019 according to demographic factors and diagnosis groups. METHODS: Routine data of all admissions between 02.12.2019-30.06.2020 and 01.12.2018-30.06.2019 was available from six hospitals in five cities from north-western, eastern, south-eastern, and south-western Germany. We defined 10 diagnosis groups using ICD-10 codes: mental disorders due to use of alcohol (MDA), acute myocardial infarction (AMI), stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA), heart failure, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cholelithiasis or cholecystitis, back pain, fractures of the forearm, and fractures of the femur. We calculated rate ratios comparing different periods in 12.03.2020-30.06.2020 with 12.03.2019-30.06.2019. RESULTS: Forty-one thousand three hundred fifty-three cases were admitted between 12.03.2020-30.06.2020 and 51,030 cases between 12.03.2019-30.06.2019. Admission counts prior to 12.03. were equal in 2020 and 2019. In the period after 12.03., the decrease of admissions in 2020 compared to 2019 was largest between 26.03. and 08.04. (- 30%, 95% CI - 33% to - 27%). When analysing the entire period 12.03.-30.06., the decrease of admissions was heterogeneous among hospitals, and larger among people aged 0-17 years compared to older age groups. In the first 8 weeks after 12.03., admission counts of all diagnoses except femur fractures and pneumonia declined. Admissions with pneumonia increased in this early period. Between 07.05. and 30.6.2020, we noted that admissions with AMI (+ 13%, 95% CI - 3% to + 32%) and cholelithiasis or cholecystitis (+ 20%, 95% CI + 1% to + 44%) were higher than in 2019. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest differential trends of admission counts according to age, location, and diagnosis. An initial decrease of admissions with MDA, AMI, stroke or TIA, heart failure, COPD, cholelithiasis or cholecystitis, and back pain imply delays of emergency care in Germany. Finally, our study suggests a delayed increase of admissions with AMI and cholelithiasis or cholecystitis.

COVID-19/epidemiology , Emergency Service, Hospital/trends , Acute Disease , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Child , Child, Preschool , Germany/epidemiology , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Patient Acceptance of Health Care , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
Rofo ; 193(5): 537-543, 2021 05.
Article in English, German | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1127197


PURPOSE: The recent COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in an increasing overload of the medical system. Healthcare workers (HCW) in radiology departments are exposed to a high infection risk similar to HCWs in the ICU or dedicated COVID wards. The goal of our paper is to evaluate the prevalence of IgG antibody against SARS-CoV-2 among radiology HCWs in two different hospitals and regions in Germany with a low and high COVID-19 prevalence and to compare it to the prevalence in other clinical personnel. Additionally, we assessed the number of radiological procedures performed in patients with a positive PCR test (C+) followed by a short review of the risk for nosocomial infections of radiology HCWs. MATERIALS AND METHODS: During the first COVID-19 wave between March and July 2020, we evaluated a region with one of the highest COVID-19 rates (776-1570/100 000) in Germany (Hospital A). Additionally, we assessed Hospital B in a region with a low prevalence (65/100 000). We tested the serum prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies among the whole staff with a subgroup analysis for radiology in both hospitals. We calculated the total number of different radiological procedures performed in C+ patients. RESULTS: In Hospital A 594 PCR-proven C+ patients were treated resulting in 2723 radiological procedures. 24 % (n = 6) of the radiology technicians and 13.35 (n = 2) of radiologists had a positive IgG test. The rates were similar to positive rates in HCWs in COVID-19 wards and ICUs within the hospital. The most frequently performed procedures in C+ patients were chest X-rays (3.17/patient) and CT examinations (1.15/patient). In Hospital B 50 C+ patients were treated, resulting in 64 radiological procedures. None of the HCWs tested IgG positive. The most frequently performed examinations were also chest X-rays (1.04/patient) and CT (0.2/patient). CONCLUSION: HCWs in radiology have a high occupational infection risk similar to that of HCWs in ICUs and dedicated COVID wards. KEY POINTS: · The risk of acquiring COVID-19 increases with the amount of contact with infected individuals.. · The occupational risk of a SARS-CoV-2 infection for radiology staff is similar to that of nurses and physicians in COVID wards.. · Hygiene concepts and medical resources have to be adapted for further COVID outbreaks.. · Reporting of an occupational disease can be considered in the case of seropositive staff.. CITATION FORMAT: · Finkenzeller T, Lenhart S, Reinwald M et al. Risk to Radiology Staff for Occupational COVID-19 Infection in a High-Risk and a Low-Risk Region in Germany: Lessons from the "First Wave". Fortschr Röntgenstr 2021; 193: 537 - 543.

COVID-19/transmission , Cross Infection/etiology , Occupational Diseases/etiology , Radiologists , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross Infection/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Evaluation Studies as Topic , Germany , Humans , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Radiology Department, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Risk