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1.
Eur J Med Res ; 27(1): 41, 2022 Mar 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1745423

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, endoscopic societies initially recommended reduction of endoscopic procedures. In particular non-urgent endoscopies should be postponed. However, this might lead to unnecessary delay in diagnosing gastrointestinal conditions. METHODS: Retrospectively we analysed the gastrointestinal endoscopies performed at the Central Endoscopy Unit of Saarland University Medical Center during seven weeks from 23 March to 10 May 2020 and present our real-world single-centre experience with an individualized rtPCR-based pre-endoscopy SARS-CoV-2 testing strategy. We also present our experience with this strategy in 2021. RESULTS: Altogether 359 gastrointestinal endoscopies were performed in the initial period. The testing strategy enabled us to conservatively handle endoscopy programme reduction (44% reduction as compared 2019) during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. The results of COVID-19 rtPCR from nasopharyngeal swabs were available in 89% of patients prior to endoscopies. Apart from six patients with known COVID-19, all other tested patients were negative. The frequencies of endoscopic therapies and clinically significant findings did not differ between patients with or without SARS-CoV-2 tests. In 2021 we were able to unrestrictedly perform all requested endoscopic procedures (> 5000 procedures) by applying the rtPCR-based pre-endoscopy SARS-CoV-2 testing strategy, regardless of next waves of COVID-19. Only two out-patients (1893 out-patient procedures) were tested positive in the year 2021. CONCLUSION: A structured pre-endoscopy SARS-CoV-2 testing strategy is feasible in the clinical routine of an endoscopy unit. rtPCR-based pre-endoscopy SARS-CoV-2 testing safely allowed unrestricted continuation of endoscopic procedures even in the presence of high incidence rates of COVID-19. Given the low frequency of positive tests, the absolute effect of pre-endoscopy testing on viral transmission may be low when FFP-2 masks are regularly used.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19/diagnosis , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Preoperative Care/statistics & numerical data , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Germany , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
4.
Clin Transl Gastroenterol ; 12(6): e00365, 2021 06 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1249736

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: The initial surge of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic prompted national recommendations to delay nonurgent endoscopic procedures. The objective of this study was to provide real-world data on the impact of COVID-19 on endoscopic procedures in a safety-net healthcare system and cancer center affiliated with a tertiary academic center. METHODS: This retrospective cohort study used a combination of electronic health record data and a prospective data tool created to track endoscopy procedures throughout COVID-19 to describe patient and procedural characteristics of endoscopic procedures delayed during the initial COVID-19 surge. RESULTS: Of the 480 patients identified, the median age was 57 years (interquartile range 46-66), 55% (n = 262) were male, and 59% self-identified as white. Colonoscopy was the most common type of delayed procedure (49%), followed by combined esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) and colonoscopy (22%), and EGD alone (20%). Colorectal cancer screening was the most common indication for delayed colonoscopy (35%), and evaluation of suspected bleeding (30%) was the most common indication for delayed combined EGD and colonoscopy. To date, 46% (223/480) of delayed cases have been completed with 12 colorectal, pancreatic, and stomach cancers diagnosed. Sociodemographic factors, procedure type, and sedation type were not significantly associated with endoscopy completion. The median time to endoscopy after delayed procedure was 88 days (interquartile range 63-119) with no differences by procedure type. DISCUSSION: To minimize potential losses to follow-up, delayed, or missed diagnoses and to reduce progression of gastrointestinal diseases, all efforts should be used to ensure follow-up in those whose endoscopic procedures were delayed because of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Delayed Diagnosis , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Gastrointestinal Diseases/diagnosis , Pandemics , Aged , Female , Gastrointestinal Diseases/therapy , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Time-to-Treatment , Washington/epidemiology
5.
Cancer Prev Res (Phila) ; 14(5): 521-526, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1102214

ABSTRACT

Disruptions in cancer screening due to the COVID-19 pandemic may disproportionally affect patients with inherited cancer predisposition syndromes, including Lynch syndrome. Herein, we study the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on endoscopic surveillance in Lynch syndrome through a prospective study of patients with Lynch syndrome at a tertiary referral center who were scheduled for endoscopic surveillance during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown between March 16, 2020 and June 4, 2020. Of our cohort of 302 individuals with Lynch syndrome, 34 (11%) had endoscopic procedures scheduled during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown. Of the 27 patients whose endoscopic surveillance was canceled during this period, 85% rescheduled procedures within 6 months with a median delay of 72 days [interquartile range (IQR), 55-84 days], with identification of an advanced adenoma or gastrointestinal cancer in 13%. Individuals who did not have a rescheduled endoscopic procedure were significantly younger than those with a rescheduled procedure [age 35 (IQR, 26-43) vs. age 55 (IQR, 43-63), P = 0.018]. Male sex was also suggestive of increasing likelihood of not having a rescheduled procedure. Taken together, our study demonstrates that the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown led to delayed endoscopic surveillance in Lynch syndrome, with potentially impactful delays among young patients. These data also emphasize the importance of timely surveillance in Lynch syndrome during this current, as well as potential future, global pandemics. PREVENTION RELEVANCE: The COVID-19 pandemic has led to unprecedented disruptions in cancer screening, which may have disproportionate effects on individuals at increased cancer risk, including those with Lynch syndrome. Herein, we show that the COVID-19 pandemic led to significant disruptions in Lynch syndrome surveillance with potentially impactful delays, thus highlighting the importance of ensuring timely surveillance among this high-risk cohort.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Colorectal Neoplasms, Hereditary Nonpolyposis/diagnosis , Early Detection of Cancer/statistics & numerical data , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Practice Patterns, Physicians'/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Adult , COVID-19/virology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pennsylvania/epidemiology , Prospective Studies
6.
Gut ; 70(3): 537-543, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1066909

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The COVID-19 pandemic has had a major global impact on endoscopic services. This reduced capacity, along with public reluctance to undergo endoscopy during the pandemic, might result in excess mortality from delayed cancer diagnosis. Using the UK's National Endoscopy Database (NED), we performed the first national analysis of the impact of the pandemic on endoscopy services and endoscopic cancer diagnosis. DESIGN: We developed a NED COVID-19 module incorporating procedure-level data on all endoscopic procedures. Three periods were designated: pre-COVID (6 January 2020 to 15 March), transition (16-22 March) and COVID-impacted (23 March-31 May). National, regional and procedure-specific analyses were performed. The average weekly number of cancers, proportion of missing cancers and cancer detection rates were calculated. RESULTS: A weekly average of 35 478 endoscopy procedures were performed in the pre-COVID period. Activity in the COVID-impacted period reduced to 12% of pre-COVID levels; at its low point, activity was only 5%, recovering to 20% of pre-COVID activity by study end. Although more selective vetting significantly increased the per-procedure cancer detection rate (pre-COVID 1.91%; COVID-impacted 6.61%; p<0.001), the weekly number of cancers detected decreased by 58%. The proportion of missing cancers ranged from 19% (pancreatobiliary) to 72% (colorectal). CONCLUSION: This national analysis demonstrates the remarkable impact that the pandemic has had on endoscopic services, which has resulted in a substantial and concerning reduction in cancer detection. Major, urgent efforts are required to restore endoscopy capacity to prevent an impending cancer healthcare crisis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Gastrointestinal Neoplasms/diagnosis , Practice Patterns, Physicians'/statistics & numerical data , Adult , Aged , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , United Kingdom/epidemiology
9.
J Gastroenterol Hepatol ; 36(6): 1627-1633, 2021 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-975558

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND AND AIM: Significant human and material resources have been diverted to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Healthcare workers are at high risk of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. We assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on gastroenterology and hepatology departments and specialists in Spain. METHODS: This study involves a nationwide survey addressing the impact of COVID-19 on resources, procedures, and physicians of gastroenterology and hepatology departments in 81 hospitals representative of the Spanish National Health Service. RESULTS: Overall, 41.8% of hospital beds and 40.7% of gastroenterology and hepatology beds were allocated to COVID-19 patient care, as well as 24.8% of gastroenterologists and 58.3% of residents. Outpatient visits, abdominal ultrasounds, and endoscopies were reduced by 81.8-91.9%. Nine large university hospitals had 75% and 89% reductions in therapeutic endoscopies and hepatocellular carcinoma surgery, respectively, with cancelation of elective liver transplant and transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt. Prevalence of infected physicians was 10.6% and was dependent on regional population incidence (r = 0.74, P = 0.001), with 11% hospitalized and one physician dying. Up to 63.4% of physicians may have been infected before or shortly after Spain entered lockdown, 57% of them having recently performed endoscopies. Adequate protection was acknowledged in > 80% hospitals, but only 2.9% performed regular SARS-CoV-2 testing. CONCLUSIONS: The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on healthcare delivery has been massive. A wave of gastroenterology-related complications is expected because of resource diversion. Gastroenterologists have a high prevalence of infection, although they may have been infected during a first phase of lower awareness and protection. Regular SARS-CoV-2 screening, adequate protection, and quick reorganization of healthcare resources are still needed.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Gastroenterology , Gastrointestinal Diseases , Health Personnel , Occupational Exposure , Attitude of Health Personnel , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Digestive System Surgical Procedures/statistics & numerical data , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Gastroenterology/methods , Gastroenterology/organization & administration , Gastroenterology/statistics & numerical data , Gastrointestinal Diseases/epidemiology , Gastrointestinal Diseases/therapy , Health Care Surveys , Health Personnel/psychology , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Hospital Departments/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Infection Control/methods , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Needs Assessment , Occupational Exposure/prevention & control , Occupational Exposure/standards , Organizational Innovation , SARS-CoV-2 , Spain/epidemiology
10.
J Clin Gastroenterol ; 54(10): 833-840, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-963399

ABSTRACT

Performance of endoscopic procedures is associated with a risk of infection from COVID-19. This risk can be reduced by the use of personal protective equipment (PPE). However, shortage of PPE has emerged as an important issue in managing the pandemic in both traditionally high and low-resource areas. A group of clinicians and researchers from thirteen countries representing low, middle, and high-income areas has developed recommendations for optimal utilization of PPE before, during, and after gastrointestinal endoscopy with particular reference to low-resource situations. We determined that there is limited flexibility with regard to the utilization of PPE between ideal and low-resource settings. Some compromises are possible, especially with regard to PPE use, during endoscopic procedures. We have, therefore, also stressed the need to prevent transmission of COVID-19 by measures other than PPE and to conserve PPE by reduction of patient volume, limiting procedures to urgent or emergent, and reducing the number of staff and trainees involved in procedures. This guidance aims to optimize utilization of PPE and protection of health care providers.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/economics , Health Resources/economics , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Pandemics/prevention & control , Personal Protective Equipment/standards , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Practice Guidelines as Topic , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Female , Gastroenterology/standards , Global Health , Humans , Infection Control/organization & administration , Internationality , Male , Occupational Health/statistics & numerical data , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , Personal Protective Equipment/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Poverty , Societies, Medical
12.
Endoscopy ; 53(2): 166-170, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-882959

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: COVID-19 has dramatically affected gastrointestinal endoscopy practice. We aimed to investigate its impact on procedure types, indications, and findings. METHODS: We retrospectively analyzed endoscopies performed in 15 Dutch hospitals by comparing periods 15 March to 25 June of 2019 and 2020 using the prospective Trans.IT database. RESULTS: During lockdown in 2020, 9776 patients underwent endoscopy compared with 19 296 in 2019. Gastroscopies decreased by 57 % (from 7846 to 4467) and colonoscopies by 45 % (from 12219 to 5609), whereas endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography volumes remained comparable (from 578 to 522). Although endoscopy results indicative of cancer decreased (from 524 to 340), the likelihood of detecting cancer during endoscopy increased (2.7 % [95 % confidence interval (CI) 2.5 - 3.0] in 2019 versus 3.5 % [95 %CI 3.1 - 3.9] in 2020; P < 0.001). After lifting of lockdown, endoscopy volumes started to return to normal, except for colorectal cancer screening. CONCLUSIONS: Fewer endoscopies were performed during the COVID-19 lockdown, leading to a significant reduction in the absolute detection of cancer. Endoscopies increased rapidly after lockdown, except for colorectal cancer screening.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Neoplasms/diagnostic imaging , Pandemics , Databases, Factual , Humans , Netherlands , Retrospective Studies
16.
Endoscopy ; 52(12): 1111-1115, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-766193

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has majorly affected medical activity around the world. We sought to measure the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy activity in France. METHODS: We performed a web-based survey, including 35 questions on the responders and their endoscopic practice, from 23 March to 27 March 2020, sent to the 3300 French gastroenterologists practicing endoscopy. RESULTS: 694 GI endoscopists (21 %) provided analyzable data; of these, 29.4 % (204/694) were involved in the management of COVID-19 patients outside the endoscopy department. During the study period, 98.7 % (685/694) of endoscopists had had to cancel procedures. There were 89 gastroenterologists (12.8 %) who reported symptoms compatible with COVID-19 infection, and a positive PCR test was recorded in 12/197 (6.1 %) vs. 3/497 (0.6 %) endoscopists in the high vs. low prevalence areas, respectively (P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: The COVID-19 pandemic led to a major reduction in the volume of GI endoscopies performed in France in March 2020. The prolonged limited access to GI endoscopy could lead to a delay in the management of patients with GI cancers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Gastroenterology/statistics & numerical data , Hospital Departments/statistics & numerical data , Occupational Exposure , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/prevention & control , Female , France/epidemiology , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment/supply & distribution , Prevalence , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
19.
Arab J Gastroenterol ; 21(3): 156-161, 2020 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-734009

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND & STUDY AIMS: Corona virus disease-19 (COVID-19) pandemic has markedly impacted routine medical services including gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy. We aim to report the real-life performance in high volume GI endoscopy units during the pandemic. PATIENTS AND METHODS: A web-based survey covering all aspects of daily performance in GI endoscopy units was sent to endoscopy units worldwide. Responses were collected and data were analyzed to reveal the effect of COVID-19 pandemic on endoscopy practice. RESULTS: Participants from 48 countries (n = 163) responded to the survey with response rate of 67.35%. The majority (85%) decreased procedure volume by over 50%, and four endoscopy units (2.45%) completely stopped. The top three indications for procedures included upper GI bleeding (89.6%), lower GI bleeding (65.6%) and cholangitis (62.6%). The majority (93.9%) triaged patients for COVID-19 prior to procedure. N95 masks were used in (57.1%), isolation gowns in (74.2%) and head covers in (78.5%). Most centers (65%) did not extend use of N95 masks, however 50.9% of centers reused N95 masks. Almost all (91.4%) centers used standard endoscopic decontamination and most (69%) had no negative pressure rooms. Forty-two centers (25.8%) reported positive cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection among patients and 50 (30.7%) centers reported positive cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection among their healthcare workers. CONCLUSIONS: Most GI endoscopy centers had a significant reduction in their volume and most procedures performed were urgent. Most centers used the recommended personal protective equipment (PPE) by GI societies however there is still a possibility of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 infection in GI endoscopy units.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Infection Control/organization & administration , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Practice Patterns, Physicians'/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Facilities and Services Utilization , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , Patient Selection , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
20.
Endoscopy ; 53(2): 173-177, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-708886

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: We aimed to report the impact of the pandemic lockdown period on the treatment and prognosis of superficial gastrointestinal neoplastic lesions. METHODS: A survey was completed by 11 centers from four continents regarding postponements during the early lockdown period of the pandemic, and the same period in 2019. RESULTS: In 2020, 55 % of the scheduled procedures were deferred, which was 11 times higher than in 2019; the main reasons were directly related to COVID-19. In countries that were highly affected, this proportion rose to 76 % vs. 26 % in those where there was less impact. Despite the absolute reduction, the relative distribution in 2019 vs. 2020 was similar, the only exception being duodenal lesions (affected by a 92 % reduction in mucosectomies). Although it is expected that the majority of postponements will not affect the stage (based on the results from biopsies and/or endoscopic appearance), 3 % of delayed procedures will probably require surgery. CONCLUSIONS: The lockdown period caused by the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic led to a substantial reduction in the number of endoscopic resections for neoplastic lesions. Nevertheless, based on clinical judgment, the planned median delay will not worsen the prognosis of the affected patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/statistics & numerical data , Gastrointestinal Neoplasms/surgery , Pandemics , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Internationality
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