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Maternal and neonatal characteristics, operative details and outcomes in COVID-19 positive parturients undergoing cesarean sections: A retrospective observational study.

Background and Aims: There is a marked inclination towards cesarean sections as the preferred mode of delivery in parturients with COVID-19 disease. However, the challenges associated with planning and performing a surgery in the COVID-19 setup are considerable. These factors may lead to widespread changes in obstetric decision-making, operative planning, and perioperative outcomes. Thus, our study aimed to study the clinical and logistical factors involved in cesarean sections in COVID-19 parturients.

Material and Methods: This was a retrospective observational study performed at a dedicated COVID-19 tertiary care center in India. All women undergoing cesarean section in the specially earmarked operating room between 1st May 2020 and 31st December 2020 were included in the study. The clinical characteristics, operative details, and neonatal details, along with maternal and fetal outcomes were noted and analyzed.

Results: A total of 44 women underwent cesarean section during the study period, with elective and emergency surgeries numbering 22 each. No indication, apart from COVID-19 status, was listed in over one-fourth of the women (13/44). The most common preoperative comorbidity was hypothyroidism (12/44). Median surgical duration was 117.5 min (IQR 100-133), with a median of 7.5 (IQR 6-8.25) healthcare personnel in the OT. Over one-fourth (12/44) of the delivered babies had low birth weight, while 4.5% (2/44) tested positive for SARS-CoV-2.

Conclusion: COVID-19 status alone continues to be a common indication for cesarean section. Operative time is increased, but the number of healthcare personnel involved can be trimmed with proper planning. Maternal and fetal outcomes are largely positive, with low transmission rates, but a considerable proportion of low-birth-weight neonates.

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