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The WHO declared SARS-CoV-2 a pandemic on 11th March 2020 prompting a rapid change to surgical practice. This study focuses on how the management of ureteric colic has adapted in a major tertiary referral unit during the peak of the pandemic so that lessons be can be learned in case a second wave occurs. Materials and
We compared admission rates and treatment patterns against national and European guidelines in 20 weeks, divided into pre- and peri-pandemic.
A total of 72 patients were admitted during the study period. 64% (46/72) were admitted pre-pandemic. 22% (10/46) of these were septic (5 stented, 5 nephrostomized) while 20% (9/46) were managed conservatively. 59% (27/46) of pre-pandemic admissions were suitable for active treatment, of which 48% (13/27) received definitive treatment (11 ureteroscopy (URS), 2 shockwave lithotripsy (SWL)) all within 48 hours of admis-sion. 52% (14/27) had temporising procedures (11 stented, 3 nephrostomized) and underwent definitive treatment within 63 days.
Of the total patients, 36% (26/72) were admitted peri-pandemic. 23% (6/26) were septic (1 stent, 5 nephrostomized), while 31% (8/26) were managed conservatively. 46% (12/26) were suitable for active treatment. 75% (9/12) received definitive treatment (4 URS, 5 SWL) of which 33% (4/12) within 48 hours and the remaining treated and stone free within 12 days. 25% (3/12) had temporising procedures (2 stented, 1 nephrostomized), with the definitive treatment provided within 17 days.
Ureteric colic admissions were reduced by almost half during the pandemic. There has been increased primary treatment with a reduction in temporising procedures and time to receiving definitive treatment. In the ‘new normal,’ lessons learned must be carried forward to maintain high rates of definitive treatments.
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