COVID-19 Impact on Vascular Surgery Practice: Experience From an Italian University Regional Hub Center for Vascular Pathology

Gian Antonio Boschetti, Sara Di Gregorio, Jorge Miguel Mena Vera, Bianca Pane, Giovanni Spinella, Domenico Palombo, Giovanni Pratesi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: The aim of the study is to evaluate the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on vascular surgery practice in a regional hub center for complex vascular disease. Methods: This is an observational single-center study in which we collected clinical and surgical data during (P1) and after (P2) the COVID-19 outbreak and the lockdown measures implemented in Northern Italy. We compared those data with the two-month period before the pandemic (P0). Results: Compared to P0, ambulatory activities were severely reduced during P1 and limited to hospitalized patients and outpatients with urgent criteria. We performed 61 operations (18 urgent and 43 elective), with a decrease in both aortic (−17.8%), cerebrovascular (−53.3%), and peripheral artery (−42.6%) disease treatments. We also observed a greater drop in open procedures (−53.2%) than in endovascular ones (−22%). All the elective patients were treated for notdeferrable conditions and they were COVID-19 negative at the ward admission screening; despite this one of them developed COVID19 during the hospital stay. Four COVID-19 positive patients were treated in urgent setting for acute limb ischemia. Throughout P2 we gradually rescheduled elective ambulatory (+155.5%) and surgical (+18%) activities, while remaining substantially lower than during P0 (respectively −45.6% and −25.7%). Conclusions: Despite COVID-19 pandemic, our experience shows that with careful patient's selection, dedicated prehospitalization protocol and proper use of personal protective equipment it is possible to guarantee continuity of care.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAnnals of Vascular Surgery
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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