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2.
Endosc Int Open ; 8(12): E1865-E1871, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-955865

ABSTRACT

Background and study aims The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), and measures taken to mitigate its impact, have profoundly affected the clinical care of gastroenterology patients and the work of endoscopy units. We aimed to describe the clinical care delivered by gastroenterologists and the type of procedures performed during the early to peak period of the pandemic. Methods Endoscopy leaders in the New York region were invited to participate in an electronic survey describing operations and clinical service. Surveys were distributed on April 7, 2020 and responses were collected over the following week. A follow-up survey was distributed on April 20, 2020. Participants were asked to report procedure volumes and patient characteristics, as well protocols for staffing and testing for COVID-19. Results Eleven large academic endoscopy units in the New York City region responded to the survey, representing every major hospital system. COVID patients occupied an average of 54.5 % (18 - 84 %) of hospital beds at the time of survey completion, with 14.5 % (2 %-23 %) of COVID patients requiring intensive care. Endoscopy procedure volume and the number of physicians performing procedures declined by 90 % (66 %-98 %) and 84.5 % (50 %-97 %) respectively following introduction of restricted practice. During this period the most common procedures were EGDs (7.9/unit/week; 88 % for bleeding; the remainder for foreign body and feeding tube placement); ERCPs (5/unit/week; for cholangitis in 67 % and obstructive jaundice in 20 %); Colonoscopies (4/unit/week for bleeding in 77 % or colitis in 23 %) and least common were EUS (3/unit/week for tumor biopsies). Of the sites, 44 % performed pre-procedure COVID testing and the proportion of COVID-positive patients undergoing procedures was 4.6 % in the first 2 weeks and up to 19.6 % in the subsequent 2 weeks. The majority of COVID-positive patients undergoing procedures underwent EGD (30.6 % COVID +) and ERCP (10.2 % COVID +). Conclusions COVID-19 has profoundly impacted the operation of endoscopy units in the New York region. Our data show the impact of a restricted emergency practice on endoscopy volumes and the proportion of expected COVID positive cases during the peak time of the pandemic.

4.
Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol ; 2020 Oct 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-807682

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND AND AIMS: The prevalence and significance of digestive manifestations in COVID-19 remain uncertain. We aimed to assess the prevalence, spectrum, severity, and significance of digestive manifestations in patients hospitalized with COVID-19. METHODS: Consecutive patients hospitalized with COVID-19 were identified across a geographically diverse alliance of medical centers in North America. Data pertaining to baseline characteristics, symptomatology, laboratory assessment, imaging, and endoscopic findings from the time of symptom onset until discharge or death were manually abstracted from electronic health records to characterize the prevalence, spectrum, and severity of digestive manifestations. Regression analyses were performed to evaluate the association between digestive manifestations and severe outcomes related to COVID-19. FINDINGS: A total of 1992 patients across 36 centers met eligibility criteria and were included. Overall, 53% of patients experienced at least one gastrointestinal symptom at any time during their illness, most commonly diarrhea (34%), nausea (27%), vomiting (16%), and abdominal pain (11%). In 74% of cases, gastrointestinal symptoms were judged to be mild. In total, 35% of patients developed an abnormal alanine aminotransferase or total bilirubin level; these were elevated to less than 5 times the upper limit of normal in 77% of cases. After adjusting for potential confounders, the presence of gastrointestinal symptoms at any time (odds ratio 0.93, 95% confidence interval 0.76-1.15) or liver test abnormalities on admission (odds ratio 1.31, 95% confidence interval 0.80-2.12) were not independently associated with mechanical ventilation or death. CONCLUSION: Among patients hospitalized with COVID-19, gastrointestinal symptoms and liver test abnormalities were common but the majority were mild and their presence was not associated with a more severe clinical course.

5.
Gut ; 69(11): 1915-1924, 2020 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-724057

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on provision of endoscopy services globally as staff and real estate were repurposed. As we begin to recover from the pandemic, a cohesive international approach is needed, and guidance on how to resume endoscopy services safely to avoid unintended harm from diagnostic delays. The aim of these guidelines is to provide consensus recommendations that clinicians can use to facilitate the swift and safe resumption of endoscopy services. An evidence-based literature review was carried out on the various strategies used globally to manage endoscopy during the COVID-19 pandemic and control infection. A modified Delphi process involving international endoscopy experts was used to agree on the consensus statements. A threshold of 80% agreement was used to establish consensus for each statement. 27 of 30 statements achieved consensus after two rounds of voting by 34 experts. The statements were categorised as pre-endoscopy, during endoscopy and postendoscopy addressing relevant areas of practice, such as screening, personal protective equipment, appropriate environments for endoscopy and infection control precautions, particularly in areas of high disease prevalence. Recommendations for testing of patients and for healthcare workers, appropriate locations of donning and doffing areas and social distancing measures before endoscopy are unique and not dealt with by any other guidelines. This international consensus using a modified Delphi method to produce a series of best practice recommendations to aid the safe resumption of endoscopy services globally in the era of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Cross Infection/prevention & control , Endoscopy, Digestive System/statistics & numerical data , Occupational Health , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Practice Guidelines as Topic , Consensus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Delphi Technique , Endoscopy, Digestive System/methods , Female , Follow-Up Studies , Humans , Incidence , Internationality , Male , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , Patient Safety , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Risk Assessment , Time Factors , United States
9.
Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol ; 18(8): 1673-1681, 2020 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-102150

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic seemingly is peaking now in New York City and has triggered significant changes to the standard management of gastrointestinal diseases. Priorities such as minimizing viral transmission, preserving personal protective equipment, and freeing hospital beds have driven unconventional approaches to managing gastroenterology (GI) patients. Conversion of endoscopy units to COVID units and redeployment of GI fellows and faculty has profoundly changed the profile of most GI services. Meanwhile, consult and procedural volumes have been reduced drastically. In this review, we share our collective experiences regarding how we have changed our practice of medicine in response to the COVID surge. Although we review our management of specific consults and conditions, the overarching theme focuses primarily on noninvasive measures and maximizing medical therapies. Endoscopic procedures have been reserved for those timely interventions that are most likely to be therapeutic. The role of multidisciplinary discussion, although always important, now has become critical. The support of our faculty and trainees remains essential. Local leadership can encourage well-being by frequent team check-ins and by fostering trainee development through remote learning. Advancing a clear vision and a transparent process for how to organize and triage care in the recovery phase will allow for a smooth transition to our new normal.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Disease Management , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Gastroenterology/methods , Gastroenterology/organization & administration , Infection Control/methods , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Humans , New York City/epidemiology , Pandemics
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