The Impact of COVID-19 on Interventional Radiology Services in the UK.

Published on Jan 1, 2021in CardioVascular and Interventional Radiology2.034
· DOI :10.1007/S00270-020-02692-2
Jim Zhong5
Estimated H-index: 5
(Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust),
Anubhav Datta2
Estimated H-index: 2
(University of Manchester)
+ 9 AuthorsPaul Walker2
Estimated H-index: 2
(Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust)
Introduction The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has created unprecedented challenges on the healthcare system. The aim of this multi-centre study was to measure the impact of COVID-19 on IR services in the UK. Material and methods Retrospective cross-sectional study of IR practice in six UK centres during the COVID-19 pandemic was carried out. All therapeutic IR procedures were identified using the respective hospital radiology information systems and COVID-19 status found on the hospital patient record systems. The total number of therapeutic IR procedures was recorded over two time periods, 25/03/2019-21/04/2019 (control group) and 30/03/2020-26/04/2020 (COVID-19 group). The data points collected were: procedure type, aerosol-generating nature, acute or elective case, modality used, in- or out-of-hours case and whether the procedure was done at the bedside (portable). Results A 31% decrease in overall number of IR procedures was observed during COVID-19 compared to the control group (1363 cases vs 942 cases); however, the acute work decreased by only 0.5%. An increase in out-of-hours work by 10% was observed. COVID-19 was suspected or laboratory proved in 9.9% of cases (n = 93), and 15% of total cases (n = 141) were classed as aerosol-generating procedures. A 66% rise in cholecystostomy was noted during COVID-19. Image-guided ablation, IVC filters, aortic stent grafting and visceral vascular stenting had the greatest % decreases in practice during COVID-19, with 91.7%, 83.3%, 80.8% and 80.2% decreases, respectively. Conclusion During the global pandemic, IR has continued to provide emergency and elective treatment highlighting the adaptability of IR in supporting other specialties.
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