Emergency Colorectal Surgery in a COVID-19 Pandemic Epicenter

George Angelos, Andrew Grayson Dockter, Mahir Gachabayov, Rifat Latifi, Roberto Bergamaschi
Surgical Technology International 2020 May 28, 36: 18-21
Transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a considerable risk during emergency colorectal surgery in a pandemic epicenter. It is well known that the primary route of SARS-CoV-2 transmission is through respiratory droplets. However, little is known about shedding of the virus in bodily fluids and associated risks. Although the current moratorium on elective surgery addresses multiple ongoing concerns, including the management of precious resources as well as unknown exposure risks, surgeons undeniably must face and mitigate risks related to exposure to patient airway management-related aerosols, bodily fluids, surgical smoke, contaminated insufflation, and specimen handling in emergency colorectal surgery. Given the significant concern of airborne transmission, the authors recommend conventional, in lieu of laparoscopic, access in emergency colorectal surgery in a COVID-19 pandemic epicenter.

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