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Hand (N Y) ; : 15589447211028918, 2021 Jul 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1325295


BACKGROUND: The Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has had a dramatic impact on individual and societal behaviors, as well as on health care systems. It confers a unique opportunity to examine the relationship among disease, policies, and patterns of activity, as well as their impacts on surgical unit functionality. This study aims to compare the distribution and patterns of injury at a tertiary hand surgery trauma center before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: A retrospective analysis of all patients presenting to the Royal North Shore Hospital hand surgery service in the 5-week period from March 16 to April 21 in 2019 and 2020 was undertaken, forming 2 cohorts for comparison. Demographic, injury, and operative data were collected and compared descriptively using comparative statistics. RESULTS: There were 114 primary operative presentations during the 5-week period in 2020, representing a 27.4% decrease from the 157 presentations during the equivalent period in 2019. There was an increase in the proportion of emergency presentations from 73.9% in 2019 to 85.1% in 2020 (P = .03), with a corresponding decrease in elective presentations during 2020. The incidence of sporting injuries and motor vehicle accidents decreased in 2020, whereas falls and accidents involving knives and tools remained relatively constant. Operating times decreased in 2020, whereas the length of hospital stay remained constant. CONCLUSIONS: The COVID-19 pandemic and consequent restrictions of activity have had substantial impacts on the patterns of hand trauma and its management. These insights have implications for staff and resource management during times of social disruption in the future.

ANZ J Surg ; 91(1-2): 68-72, 2021 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-852209


BACKGROUND: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has affected communities worldwide. This study examines the impact that public health measures to control viral spread have had on orthopaedic trauma presenting to an Australian level 1 trauma centre. We hypothesized that the volume of orthopaedic trauma in the period of social distancing would decrease, and the mechanisms of injury differ, compared to pre-pandemic times. METHODS: We performed a retrospective analysis of patients requiring emergency orthopaedic surgery between 16 March and 21 April 2020 (the period after social distancing and lockdown commenced), and compared it to the group of patients from the same period in 2019. We collected demographic data, as well as injury type, anatomical location, mechanism of injury and surgical logistics. RESULTS: During the COVID-19 period, total emergency operations performed decreased by 15.6% compared to the same period in 2019. Orthopaedic admissions decreased by 30.8%. Demographics of the groups were unchanged. Anaesthetic time decreased, but total time spent in the operating theatre was unchanged. Road trauma comprised a similar proportion of cases overall; however, cycling-related accidents increased significantly, making up 11% of presentations during COVID-19. Sporting injuries, work-related injuries and multi-traumas reduced during the pandemic. CONCLUSION: The impact of COVID-19-related lockdown measures and social distancing on orthopaedic trauma in Australia has been an overall decrease in volume of cases, combined with significant changes in the mechanisms of injury necessitating surgery.

COVID-19/prevention & control , Musculoskeletal System/injuries , Orthopedic Procedures/statistics & numerical data , Physical Distancing , Trauma Centers/statistics & numerical data , Wounds and Injuries/epidemiology , Adult , Australia , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Male , Retrospective Studies , Wounds and Injuries/surgery