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2.
Drug Deliv ; 29(1): 10-17, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1577575

ABSTRACT

Aerosol therapy is used to deliver medical therapeutics directly to the airways to treat respiratory conditions. A potential consequence of this form of treatment is the release of fugitive aerosols, both patient derived and medical, into the environment and the subsequent exposure of caregivers and bystanders to potential viral infections. This study examined the release of these fugitive aerosols during a standard aerosol therapy to a simulated adult patient. An aerosol holding chamber and mouthpiece were connected to a representative head model and breathing simulator. A combination of laser and Schlieren imaging was used to non-invasively visualize the release and dispersion of fugitive aerosol particles. Time-varying aerosol particle number concentrations and size distributions were measured with optical particle sizers at clinically relevant positions to the simulated patient. The influence of breathing pattern, normal and distressed, supplemental air flow, at 0.2 and 6 LPM, and the addition of a bacterial filter to the exhalation port of the mouthpiece were assessed. Images showed large quantities of fugitive aerosols emitted from the unfiltered mouthpiece. The images and particle counter data show that the addition of a bacterial filter limited the release of these fugitive aerosols, with the peak fugitive aerosol concentrations decreasing by 47.3-83.3%, depending on distance from the simulated patient. The addition of a bacterial filter to the mouthpiece significantly reduces the levels of fugitive aerosols emitted during a simulated aerosol therapy, p≤ .05, and would greatly aid in reducing healthcare worker and bystander exposure to potentially harmful fugitive aerosols.


Subject(s)
Aerosols , COVID-19 , Drug Delivery Systems , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Nebulizers and Vaporizers , Respiratory Therapy , Aerosols/administration & dosage , Aerosols/adverse effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Computer Simulation , Drug Delivery Systems/instrumentation , Drug Delivery Systems/methods , Equipment Design , Humans , Infection Control/methods , Models, Biological , Particle Size , Respiratory Therapy/adverse effects , Respiratory Therapy/instrumentation , Respiratory Therapy/methods , SARS-CoV-2
3.
Br J Radiol ; 95(1129): 20210835, 2022 Jan 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1575206

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the efficacy of a barrier shield in reducing droplet transmission and its effect on image quality and radiation dose in an interventional suite. METHODS: A human cough droplet visualisation model in a supine position was developed to assess efficacy of barrier shield in reducing environmental contamination. Its effect on image quality (resolution and contrast) was evaluated via image quality test phantom. Changes in the radiation dose to patient post-shield utilisation was measured. RESULTS: Use of the shield prevented escape of visible fluorescent cough droplets from the containment area. No subjective change in line-pair resolution was observed. No significant difference in contrast-to-noise ratio was measured. Radiation dosage to patient was increased; this is predominantly attributed to the increased air gap and not the physical properties of the shield. CONCLUSION: Use of the barrier shield provided an effective added layer of personal protection in the interventional radiology theatre for aerosol generating procedures. ADVANCES IN KNOWLEDGE: This is the first time a human supine cough droplet visualisation has been developed. While multiple types of barrier shields have been described, this is the first systematic practical evaluation of a barrier shield designed for use in the interventional radiology theatre.


Subject(s)
Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Protective Devices , Radiology, Interventional/instrumentation , Adult , COVID-19/transmission , Cough , Equipment Design , Fluorescence , Humans , Male , Phantoms, Imaging , Radiation Dosage , Signal-To-Noise Ratio , Supine Position
4.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 18(18)2021 09 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1547312

ABSTRACT

The aim of this study is to assess the effect of contact time, contact distance and the use of personal protective equipment on the determination of SARS-CoV-2 infection in healthcare workers (HCWs). This study consists of an analysis of data gathered for safety reasons at the Sapienza Teaching Hospital Policlinico Umberto I in Rome through the surveillance system that was put into place after the worsening of the COVID-19 pandemic. The studied subjects consist of HCWs who were put under health surveillance, i.e., all employees who were in contact with subjects who were confirmed to have tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. The HCWs under surveillance were monitored for a period encompassing ten days after the date of contact, during which they undertook nasopharyngeal swab tests analysed through RT-PCR (RealStar® SARS-CoV-2 Altona Diagnostic-Germany). Descriptive and univariate analyses have been undertaken, considering the following as risk factors: (a) no personal protective equipment use (PPE); (b) Distance < 1 m between the positive and contact persons; (c) contact time > 15'. Finally, a Cox regression and an analysis of the level of synergism between factors, as specified by Rothman, were carried out. We analysed data from 1273 HCWs. Of these HCWs, 799 (62.8%) were females, with a sample average age of 47.8 years. Thirty-nine (3.1%) tested positive during surveillance. The overall incidence rate was 0.4 per 100 person-days. Time elapsed from the last exposure and a positive RT-PCR result ranged from 2 to 17 days (mean = 7, median = 6 days). In the univariate analysis, a distance <1 m and a contact time > 15' proved to be risk factors for the SARS-CoV-2 infection, with a hazard ratio (HR) of 2.62 (95% CI: 1.11-6.19) and 3.59 (95% IC: 1.57-8.21), respectively. The synergism analysis found the highest synergism between the "no PPE use" x "Contact time". The synergy index S remains strongly positive also in the analysis of the factors "no PPE use" x "Distance" and "Time of contact" x "Distance". This study confirms the absolute need to implement safety protocols during the pandemic and to use the correct PPE within health facilities in order to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection. The analysis shows that among the factors considered (contact time and distance, no use of PPE), there is a strong synergistic effect.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Personal Protective Equipment , Contact Tracing , Female , Follow-Up Studies , Health Personnel , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
5.
Chest ; 160(1): 175-186, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1525725

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: SARS-CoV-2 aerosolization during noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation may endanger health care professionals. Various circuit setups have been described to reduce virus aerosolization. However, these setups may alter ventilator performance. RESEARCH QUESTION: What are the consequences of the various suggested circuit setups on ventilator efficacy during CPAP and noninvasive ventilation (NIV)? STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: Eight circuit setups were evaluated on a bench test model that consisted of a three-dimensional printed head and an artificial lung. Setups included a dual-limb circuit with an oronasal mask, a dual-limb circuit with a helmet interface, a single-limb circuit with a passive exhalation valve, three single-limb circuits with custom-made additional leaks, and two single-limb circuits with active exhalation valves. All setups were evaluated during NIV and CPAP. The following variables were recorded: the inspiratory flow preceding triggering of the ventilator, the inspiratory effort required to trigger the ventilator, the triggering delay, the maximal inspiratory pressure delivered by the ventilator, the tidal volume generated to the artificial lung, the total work of breathing, and the pressure-time product needed to trigger the ventilator. RESULTS: With NIV, the type of circuit setup had a significant impact on inspiratory flow preceding triggering of the ventilator (P < .0001), the inspiratory effort required to trigger the ventilator (P < .0001), the triggering delay (P < .0001), the maximal inspiratory pressure (P < .0001), the tidal volume (P = .0008), the work of breathing (P < .0001), and the pressure-time product needed to trigger the ventilator (P < .0001). Similar differences and consequences were seen with CPAP as well as with the addition of bacterial filters. Best performance was achieved with a dual-limb circuit with an oronasal mask. Worst performance was achieved with a dual-limb circuit with a helmet interface. INTERPRETATION: Ventilator performance is significantly impacted by the circuit setup. A dual-limb circuit with oronasal mask should be used preferentially.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Continuous Positive Airway Pressure , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Noninvasive Ventilation , Air Filters , Benchmarking/methods , COVID-19/therapy , COVID-19/transmission , Continuous Positive Airway Pressure/adverse effects , Continuous Positive Airway Pressure/instrumentation , Continuous Positive Airway Pressure/methods , Critical Pathways/standards , Critical Pathways/trends , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Noninvasive Ventilation/adverse effects , Noninvasive Ventilation/instrumentation , Noninvasive Ventilation/methods , Research Design , Respiratory Function Tests/methods , SARS-CoV-2 , Treatment Outcome , Ventilators, Mechanical
10.
Curr Opin Ophthalmol ; 31(5): 374-379, 2020 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1511065

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The use of slit lamp shields has been recommended by the American Academy of Ophthalmology as an infection control measure during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. However, there is limited evidence regarding its efficacy to reduce viral transmission risks. We aim to provide an evidence-based approach to optimize the use of slit lamp shields during clinical examination. RECENT FINDINGS: Respiratory droplets from coughing and sneezing can travel up to 50 m/s and over a distance of 2 m, with a potential area of spread of 616 cm. Slit lamp shields confer added protection against large droplets but are limited against smaller particles. A larger shield curved toward the ophthalmologist and positioned closer to the patient increases protection against large droplets. A potential improvement to the design of such shields is the use of hydrophilic materials with antiviral properties which may help to minimize splashing of infectious droplets, reducing transmission risks. These include gold or silver nanoparticles and graphene oxide. SUMMARY: Slit lamp shields serve as a barrier for large droplets, but its protection against smaller droplets is undetermined. It should be large, positioned close to the patient, and used in tandem with routine basic disinfection practices.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Infection Control/instrumentation , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Protective Devices , Slit Lamp , COVID-19 , Humans , Infection Control/methods , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
11.
Stud Health Technol Inform ; 286: 84-88, 2021 Nov 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1512003

ABSTRACT

Concerns over high transmission risk of SARS-CoV-2 have led to innovation and usage of an aerosol box to protect healthcare workers during airway intubation in patients with COVID-19. However, only a few studies have examined the impact of these aerosol boxes on the dispersion of droplets and aerosols, which are both thought to be significant contributors to the spread of COVID-19. In addition, to our knowledge, only a few studies have included in the concerned testbeds elements of the work context, which nevertheless have an impact on the use of the device.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional , Aerosols , Humans , Intubation, Intratracheal , SARS-CoV-2
12.
Retina ; 41(4): 701-705, 2021 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1511061

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: To describe our managing strategy for COVID-19 emergency, to evaluate the adherence to intravitreal treatment (AtT) rate during the outbreak in a referral hospital in Milan, and to correlate it with patients' clinical features. METHODS: The AtT rate of patients with scheduled intravitreal injections during the COVID-19 outbreak from February 23, 2020 to March 31, 2020 was compared with the previous trimester and with March 2019. The impact of age, sex, visual function, and diagnosis on the AtT rate during unlocked/locked weeks (from March 8th) was evaluated. RESULTS: Of 650 consecutive patients with scheduled intravitreal injections, the AtT rate during the COVID-19 outbreak was 0.37. This was significantly lower compared with AtT registered in the previous trimester (0.92) and in the same weeks in 2019 (0.90) (both P < 0.001). Patients adherent to treatment were significantly younger (P < 0.001) and had a lower best-corrected visual acuity in the fellow eye (P = 0.046). During the lockdown weeks, the AtT rate was significantly lower than in the two unlocked weeks (0.19 vs. 0.73, P < 0.001). In addition, the AtT rate in patients classified as "emergent" during the lockdown weeks was 0.60. CONCLUSION: These preliminary results can help the retina specialist community to foresee this unique scenario and to develop successful management strategies.


Subject(s)
Angiogenesis Inhibitors/therapeutic use , Appointments and Schedules , COVID-19/epidemiology , Choroidal Neovascularization/drug therapy , Macular Edema/drug therapy , SARS-CoV-2 , Wet Macular Degeneration/drug therapy , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/transmission , Choroidal Neovascularization/diagnostic imaging , Choroidal Neovascularization/physiopathology , Communicable Disease Control/methods , Female , Fluorescein Angiography , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Intravitreal Injections , Italy/epidemiology , Macular Edema/diagnostic imaging , Macular Edema/physiopathology , Male , Referral and Consultation/statistics & numerical data , Tomography, Optical Coherence , Visual Acuity/physiology , Wet Macular Degeneration/diagnostic imaging , Wet Macular Degeneration/physiopathology
13.
Saudi Med J ; 42(7): 742-749, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1513260

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To identify the prevalence of COVID-19 antibodies among operating room and critical care staff. METHODS: In this cross-sectional study, we recruited 319 Healthcare workers employed in the operation theater and intensive care unit of King Abdulaziz University Hospital (KAUH), a tertiary teaching hospital in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia between August 9, 2020 and November 2, 2020. All participants completed a 20-item questionnaire on demographic data and COVID-19 risk factors and provided blood samples. Antibody testing was performed using an in-house enzyme immunoassay and microneutralization test. RESULTS: Of the 319 participants, 39 had detectable COVID-19 antibodies. Five of them had never experienced any symptoms suggestive of COVID-19, and only 19 were previously diagnosed with COVID-19. The odds of developing COVID-19 or having corresponding antibodies increased if participants experienced COVID-19 symptoms (odds ratio [OR], 3.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.2-7.5) or reported contact with an infected family member (OR, 5.3; 95% CI, 2.5-11.2). Disease acquisition was not associated with employment in the ICU and involvement in the intubation of or close contact with COVID-19 patients. Of the 19 previously diagnosed participants, 6 did not possess any detectable COVID-19 antibodies. CONCLUSIONS: Healthcare workers may have undiagnosed COVID-19, and those previously infected may not have long-lasting immunity. Therefore, hospitals must continue to uphold strict infection control during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Serological Testing/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19/diagnosis , Health Personnel , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Adult , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/epidemiology , Critical Care , Cross-Sectional Studies , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , Female , Hospitals, Teaching , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional , Male , Middle Aged , Operating Rooms , Pandemics , Prevalence , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Saudi Arabia/epidemiology
14.
Antimicrob Resist Infect Control ; 10(1): 159, 2021 11 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1505725

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In the COVID-19 pandemic context, a massive shortage of personal protective equipment occurred. To increase the available stocks, several countries appealed for donations from individuals or industries. While national and international standards to evaluate personal protective equipment exist, none of the previous research studied how to evaluate personal protective equipment coming from donations to healthcare establishments. Our aim was to evaluate the quality and possible use of the personal protective equipment donations delivered to our health care establishment in order to avoid a shortage and to protect health care workers throughout the COVID-19 crisis. METHODS: Our intervention focused on evaluation of the quality of donations for medical use through creation of a set of assessment criteria and analysis of the economic impact of these donations. RESULTS: Between 20th March 2020 and 11th May 2020, we received 239 donations including respirators, gloves, coveralls, face masks, gowns, hats, overshoes, alcohol-based hand rubs, face shields, goggles and aprons. A total of 448,666 (86.3%) products out of the 519,618 initially received were validated and distributed in health care units, equivalent to 126 (52.7%) donations out of the 239 received. The budgetary value of the validated donations was 32,872 euros according to the pre COVID-19 prices and 122,178 euros according to the current COVID-19 prices, representing an increase of 371.7%. CONCLUSIONS: By ensuring a constant influx of personal protective equipment and proper stock management, shortages were avoided. Procurement and distribution of controlled and validated personal protective equipment is the key to providing quality care while guaranteeing health care worker safety.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Eye Protective Devices/supply & distribution , Health Personnel/psychology , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Masks/supply & distribution , Personal Protective Equipment/supply & distribution , Protective Clothing/supply & distribution , Safety Management , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Infection Control , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment/statistics & numerical data , Protective Clothing/statistics & numerical data , Quality Improvement , SARS-CoV-2
17.
Internist (Berl) ; 62(9): 899-905, 2021 Sep.
Article in German | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1491071

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Healthcare personnel (HCP) have an occupation-related risk of an infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and can transmit COVID-19 to patients. The related occupational disease is the BK 3101. OBJECTIVE: The frequency of suspected claims of occupation-related SARS-CoV­2 infections and confirmed claims of COVID-19 occupational diseases, reporting obligations under the German Infection Protection Act (IfSG) and mandatory notification requirements of physicians. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Selective literature search with special respect to data of accident insurance institutions regarding occupation-related SARS-CoV­2 infections among HCP. RESULTS: The SARS-CoV­2 pandemic also represents a challenge for occupational healthcare and the public health service. In recent months an increased number of suspected cases of an occupational disease (BK 3101) associated with COVID-19 were registered at the accident insurance institutions as well as notifications of accidents at work. The public health service handles registrations under the IfSG and coordinates the tracking of contact persons. CONCLUSION: Occupation-related SARS-CoV­2 infections are a real reason for concern. The registration data of the accident insurance institutions confirm high case numbers. Preventive measures, such as wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) and COVID-19 vaccinations significantly reduce the risk of infection among HCP as well as the risk of nosocomial transmission to patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Delivery of Health Care , Health Services , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2
20.
J Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 50(1): 59, 2021 Oct 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1477469

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: During the early part of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Canadian Society of Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery (CSO-HNS) task force published recommendations on performance of tracheotomy. Since then, our understanding of the virus has evolved with ongoing intensive research efforts. New literature has helped us better understand various aspects including patient outcomes and health care worker (HCW) risks associated with tracheotomy during the COVID-19 pandemic. Accordingly, the task force has re-evaluated and revised some of the previous recommendations. MAIN BODY: Based on recent evidence, a negative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) COVID-19 swab status is no longer the main deciding factor in the timing of tracheotomy. Instead, tracheotomy may be considered as soon as COVID-19 swab positive patients are greater than 20 days beyond initial symptoms and 2 weeks of mechanical ventilation. Furthermore, both open and percutaneous surgical techniques may be considered with both techniques showing similar safety and outcome profiles. Additional recommendations with discussion of current evidence are presented. CONCLUSION: These revised recommendations apply new evidence in optimizing patient and health care system outcomes as well as minimizing risks of COVID-19 transmission during aerosol-generating tracheotomy procedures. As previously noted, additional evidence may lead to further evolution of these and other similar recommendations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Infection Control , Otolaryngology , Tracheotomy , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/transmission , Canada , Critical Care , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Patient Selection , Practice Guidelines as Topic
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