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Ann Med ; 53(1): 1924-1934, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1493393


INTRODUCTION: The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has forced healthcare providers to reorganize their activities to protect the population from infection, postponing or suspending many medical procedures. Patients affected by chronic conditions were among the most affected. In the case of catastrophes, women have a higher lifetime prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and those with endometriosis have higher anxiety levels, making them fragile in such circumstances. MATERIALS AND METHODS: In this cross-sectional study, conducted in May 2020, we considered all women aged ≥18 years, followed up at our referral centre for endometriosis. Patients were sent an anonymous 6-section questionnaire via email, containing different validated tools for the evaluation of anxiety levels and the risk of PTSD. A multivariable linear regression was performed to assess the impact of patients' characteristics on the distress caused by the SARS-COV-2 pandemic. RESULTS: Among the 468 women recruited, 68.8% were quite-to-extremely worried about not being able to access gynaecologic care, with almost one-third of them scoring ≥33 on the IES-R. Older age and increased levels of anxiety were associated with higher risks of PTSD (age: b = 0.28, 95% CI = 0.12 - 0.44; GAD-7: b = 1.71, 95% CI = 1.38 - 2.05), with up to 71.8% of patients with severe anxiety (GAD-7 > 15) having an IES-R score ≥33 suggestive for PTSD. Women who could leave home to work showed lower levels of PTSD (b = -4.79, 95% CI = -8.44 to - 1.15, ref. unemployed women). The implementation of telemedicine in routine clinical practice was favourably viewed by 75.6% of women. DISCUSSION: Women with endometriosis are particularly exposed to the risk of PTSD during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, especially if they are older or have higher levels of anxiety. Gynaecologists should resort to additional strategies, and telemedicine could represent a feasible tool to help patients cope with this situation.KEY MESSAGESThe COVID-19 pandemic significantly impacted the lives of women with endometriosis, who appeared to have a considerable risk of PTSD.Older age, higher anxiety levels and unemployment were independently associated with the risk of developing PTSD.Clinicians should develop successful alternative strategies to help patients cope with this situation, and telemedicine might represent an applicable and acceptable solution.

Anxiety/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Endometriosis/therapy , Health Services Accessibility/standards , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/epidemiology , Adult , Age Factors , Anxiety/diagnosis , Anxiety/etiology , Anxiety/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Disease Control/standards , Cross-Sectional Studies , Endometriosis/psychology , Female , Health Services Accessibility/organization & administration , Humans , Internet/statistics & numerical data , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics/prevention & control , Prevalence , Risk Management , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/diagnosis , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/etiology , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/psychology , Surveys and Questionnaires/statistics & numerical data , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Telemedicine/standards , Young Adult
Reprod Biomed Online ; 43(4): 747-755, 2021 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1361530


RESEARCH QUESTION: How do infertility patients, endometriosis patients and health-care providers rate virtual care as an alternative to physical consultations during the first lockdown of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic in the Netherlands, and how does this influence quality of life and quality of care? DESIGN: Infertility patients and endometriosis patients from a university hospital and members of national patient organizations, as well as healthcare providers in infertility and endometriosis care, were asked to participate between May and October 2020. The distributed online questionnaires consisted of an appraisal of virtual care and an assessment of fertility-related quality of life (FertiQol) and patient-centredness of endometriosis care (ENDOCARE). RESULTS: Questionnaires were returned by 330 infertility patients, 181 endometriosis patients and 101 healthcare providers. Of these, 75.9% of infertility patients, 64.8% of endometriosis patients and 80% of healthcare providers rated telephone consultations as a good alternative to physical consultations during the COVID-19-pandemic. Only 21.3%, 14.8% and 19.2% of the three groups rated telephone consultations as a good replacement for physical consultations in the future. A total of 76.6% and 35.9% of the infertility and endometriosis patients reported increased levels of stress during the pandemic. Infertility patients scored lower on the FertiQol, while the ENDOCARE results care seem comparable to the reference population. CONCLUSIONS: Virtual care seems to be a good alternative for infertility and endometriosis patients in circumstances where physical consultations are not possible. Self-reported stress is especially high in infertility patients during the COVID-19-pandemic. Healthcare providers should aim to improve their patients' ability to cope.

COVID-19/epidemiology , Endometriosis/therapy , Infertility/therapy , Adult , Cross-Sectional Studies , Endometriosis/psychology , Female , Hospitals, University , Humans , Infertility/psychology , Netherlands/epidemiology , Patient-Centered Care , Quality of Health Care , Quality of Life , Stress, Psychological , Surveys and Questionnaires , Telemedicine
J Psychosom Res ; 146: 110508, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1228095


OBJECTIVE: The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in restrictions and social isolation measures, which carry mental health risks. Cancellation of surgery and appointments, medication shortages and fear of the virus itself may have further challenged wellbeing. We aimed to understand how COVID-19 has affected people with endometriosis. METHODS: Using a mixed methods design, we examined; 1) the impact of COVID-19 on endometriosis related healthcare, symptoms and functioning; and 2) the relationship between a measure of fear of COVID-19 and qualitative impact in 162 women with endometriosis. RESULTS: We found that 60% of women reported impact of the pandemic upon healthcare, with sub-themes documenting the difficulty of cancelled and delayed treatment, specific COVID-19 barriers, and the advantages and disadvantages of telehealth. Only 23% reported negative impact on symptoms, specifically stress; 76% reported impact on daily functioning, with sub-themes related to compromised work, social life and healthy living. A 'hidden benefits' theme revealed ways that COVID-19 had improved some women's lives, including working from home, and the opportunity for healthy lifestyle choices. Logistic regressions revealed that fear of COVID-19 significantly predicted impact themes (healthcare odds ratio = 0.93, 95% confidence interval: 0.87-0.98; symptoms odds ratio = 0.88, 95% confidence interval: 0.82-0.95; functioning odds ratio = 0.92, 95% confidence interval: 0.85-0.99). CONCLUSION: Our findings indicate the need to provide patients with supportive care during pandemic restrictions that leverage self-management strategies.

COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/psychology , Endometriosis/epidemiology , Endometriosis/therapy , Adolescent , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Fear/psychology , Female , Health Services Accessibility/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Middle Aged , Qualitative Research , Social Isolation/psychology , Surveys and Questionnaires , Turkey/epidemiology , Young Adult