Doctor-patient Communication in Surgical Practice During the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic

COVID‐19 is a new respiratory disease that has become a pandemic, involving whole world. Hospitals are now a hub for this disease and patients are advised to avoid hospitals as far as possible. Many healthcare workers are infected with SARS‐CoV‐2. This virus can spread from an infected doctor to patients or colleagues and does not respect any boundaries. Moreover, immunocompromized patients are at a greater risk of this potentially life‐threatening contagious disease. Recommendations of social distancing and home isolation to limit the spread of coronavirus are major factors limiting patients’ communication with doctors regarding their disease.

Assessment of Eustachian Tube Functioning Following Surgical Intervention of Oral Submucus Fibrosis by Using Tympanometry & Audiometry

Oral Submucus fibrosis has been reported to cause variation in hearing sensitivity & changes in middle ear function. This study was conducted to validate the influence of OSMF and its surgical correction on middle ear function and hearing sensitivity. In this study, 20 patients (40 ears) suffering from biopsy proven OSMF (Group 2 & 3) were tested for Middle ear dysfunction and hearing sensitivity using Tympanometry & Audiometry. On Tympanometry, Type A curve was obtained in 29 ears, Type B curve in 11 ears preoperatively. Immediate postoperatively TYPE A curve was obtained in 27 ears, TYPE B curve in 13 ears. After 1 month and 3 month Type B curve was not obtained in any ear. On Audiometry,28 ears showed normal hearing and 12 ears showed minimal conductive hearing loss preoperatively and Immediate postoperatively. Tests after 1 month and 3 months showed all 40 ears having normal hearing. Results were found statistically significant with p value 0.000 and F value of 11.331 in Tympanometry and 11.143 in Audiometry. Pearson correlation test revealed that results from both the test are highly co related (0.902). OSMF causes fibrotic changes in paratubal muscles which in addition with restricted mouth opening hampers proper Eustachian tube functioning in turn causing changes in Middle ear function. This feature is seldom/infrequently found in Group 2 and 3 and if encountered can be dealt effectively with surgical intervention.

Breast Cancer messaging in Vietnam: an online media content analysis

Background: Breast cancer incidence is increasing in Vietnam with studies indicating low levels of knowledge and awareness and late presentation. While there is a growing body of literature on challenges faced by women in accessing breast cancer services, and for delivering care, no studies have sought to analyse breast cancer messaging in the Vietnamese popular media. The aim of this study was to investigate and understand the content of messages concerning breast cancer in online Vietnamese newspapers in order to inform future health promotional content.

Methods: This study describes a mixed-methods media content analysis that counted and ranked frequencies for media content (article text, themes and images) related to breast cancer in six Vietnamese online news publications over a twelve month period.

Results: Media content (n = 129 articles & n = 237 images) sampled showed that although information is largely accurate, there is a marked lack of stories about Vietnamese women’s personal experiences. Such stories could help bridge the gap between what information about breast cancer is presented in the Vietnamese media, and what women in Vietnam understand about breast cancer risk factors, symptoms, screening and treatment.

Conclusions: Given findings from other studies indicating low levels of knowledge and women with breast cancer experiencing stigma and prejudice, more nuanced and in-depth narrative-focused messaging may be required.

General Thoracic Surgery Services Across Asia During the 2020 COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 posed an historic challenge to healthcare systems around the world. Besides mounting a massive response to the viral outbreak, healthcare systems needed to consider provision of clinical services to other patients in need. Surgical services for patients with thoracic disease were maintained to different degrees across various regions of Asia, ranging from significant reductions to near-normal service. Key determinants of robust thoracic surgery service provision included: preexisting plans for an epidemic response, aggressive early action to “flatten the curve”, ability to dedicate resources separately to COVID-19 and routine clinical services, prioritization of thoracic surgery, and the volume of COVID-19 cases in that region. The lessons learned can apply to other regions during this pandemic, and to the world, in preparation for the next one.

The Impact of Cleft Lip/Palate and Surgical Intervention on Adolescent Life Outcomes: Evidence from Operation Smile in India

Cleft Lip/Palate (CLP) is a congenital orofacial anomaly appearing in approximately one in 700 births worldwide. While in high-income countries CLP is normally addressed surgically during infancy, in developing countries CLP is often left unoperated, potentially impacting multiple dimensions of life quality. Previous research has frequently compared CLP outcomes to those of the general population. But because local environmental and genetic factors both contribute to the risk of CLP and also may influence life outcomes, such studies may present a downward bias in estimates of both CLP status and restorative surgery. Working with the non- profit organization Operation Smile, this research uses quasi-experimental causal methods on a novel data set of 1,118 Indian children to study the impact of CLP status and CLP correction on the physical, psychological, and social well-being of Indian teenagers. Our results indicate that adolescents with median-level CLP severity show statistically significant losses in indices of speech quality (-1.55), academic and cognitive ability (-0.43), physical well-being (-0.35), psychological well-being (-0.23), and social inclusion (-0.35). We find that CLP surgery improves speech if carried out at an early age, and that it significantly restores social inclusion.

Prevalence and Factors Associated With Caesarean Section in Four Hard-to-Reach Areas of Bangladesh: Findings From a Cross-Sectional Survey

Background: Caesarean section (C-section) is a major obstetric life-saving intervention for the prevention of pregnancy and childbirth related complications. Globally C-section is increasing, as well as in Bangladesh. This study identifies the prevalence of C-section and socio-economic and health care seeking related determinants of C-section among women living in hard-to-reach (HtR) areas in Bangladesh.

Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted using a structured questionnaire between August and December 2017 at four distinct types of HtR areas of Bangladesh, namely coastal, hilly, haor (wetland), and char areas (shallow land-mass rising out of a river). Total 2,768 women of 15-49 years of age and who had delivery within one year prior to data collection were interviewed. For the analysis of determinants of C- section, the explanatory variables were maternal age, educational status of women and their husbands, women’s religion, employment status and access to mobile phone, wealth index of the household, distance to the nearest health facility from the household, the number of ANC visits and presence of complications during pregnancy and the last childbirth. Logistic regression model was run among 850 women, who had facility delivery. Variables found significantly associated with the outcome (C-section) in bivariate analysis were included in the multivariable logistic model. A p-value <0.05 was considered as statistically significant in the analyses.

Results: Of the 2,768 women included in the study, 13% had C-sections. The mean (±SD) age of respondents was 25.4 (± 0.1) years. The adjusted prevalence of C-section was 13.1 times higher among women who had their delivery in private facilities than women who delivered in public facilities (Adjusted Odds Ratio, AOR: 13.1; 95% CI 8.6-19.9; p-value: <0.001). Women from haor area and coastal area had 4.7 times (AOR: 4.7; 95% CI 2.4-9.4; p value: <0.001) and 6.8 times (AOR: 6.8; 95% CI 3.6-12.8; p value: <0.001) more chance of having C-section, respectively, than women living in char area. Among women who reported complications during the last childbirth, the AOR of C-section was 3.6 times higher than those who did not report any complication (AOR: 3.6; 95% CI 2.4-5.4; p value: <0.001).

Conclusions: The study identifies that the prevalence of C-sections in four HtR areas of Bangladesh in substantially below the national average, although, the prevalence was higher in coastal areas than three other HtR regions. Both public and private health services for C-section should be made available and accessible in remote HtR areas for women with pregnancy complications. Establishment of an accreditation system for regulating private hospitals are needed to ensure rational use of the procedure.

All India Ophthalmological Society – Oculoplastics Association of India Consensus Statement on Preferred Practices in Oculoplasty and Lacrimal Surgery During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Oculoplastic surgeries encompass both emergency surgeries for traumatic conditions and infectious disorders as well as elective aesthetic procedures. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about a drastic change in this practice. Given the highly infectious nature of the disease as well as the global scarcity of medical resources; it is only prudent to treat only emergent conditions during the pandemic as we incorporate evidence-based screening and protective measures into our practices. This manuscript is a compilation of evidence-based guidelines for surgical procedures that oculoplastic surgeons can employ during the COVID-19 pandemic. These guidelines also serve as the basic framework upon which further recommendations may be based on in the future, as elective surgeries start being performed on a regular basis.

Resurgence of “Bow and Arrow” Related Ocular Trauma: Collateral Damage Arising From COVID-19 Lockdown in India?

Penetrating ocular trauma in children often presents late and may be associated with complications due to delayed presentation as children are not always able to verbalize their injuries. Previous studies have shown that children aged 5 and above were more frequently affected and it was also noted that boys were more frequently affected than girls. Children involved in unsupervised games often get injured and “bow and arrow” injuries were known to be a fairly common cause of penetrating trauma in children, in the past.

COVID 19 and Laparoscopic Surgeons, the Indian Scenario – Perspective

Coronavirus Disease 2019(COVID 19) had emerged as a global pandemic in recent times. The healthcare sector is at the epicentre of this unprecedented global pandemic challenge. Hospitals all over the world have reduced the number of non-emergency surgeries in order to utilize the staff and resources in a more efficient way. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) is most transmitted via respiratory droplets, but risk of transmission is hugely increased while doing aerosol generating procedures (AGPs). Laparoscopy remains the preferred surgical approach for most surgical indications. There is theoretical possibility of generation of aerosols contaminated with COVID-19 from leaked CO2 and smoke generation after energy device use. The aim of this paper is to review available evidence evaluating the risk of spread of COVID-19 during necessary laparoscopic procedures and to compile guidelines from relevant professional organizations to minimize this risk.

Prevalence of pelvic organ prolapse in women, associated factors and impact on quality of life in rural Pakistan: population-based study

Background: Pelvic organ prolapse (POP) is a gynecological condition resulting from pelvic floor dysfunction in women. The objective of this study is to estimate “the prevalence of pelvic organ prolapse” associated factors, duration and impact on women’s quality of life in rural Pakistan.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted with a three stage random sampling strategy. Three health centers were selected and selected Lady Health Workers from each health center interviewed a random sample of women in their households. The interview used a structured questionnaire to collect symptom data. Female gynaecologists then conducted a clinical examination at the local health center on women who reported symptoms of prolapse to verify and grade pelvic organ prolapse using Baden-Walker classification system.

Results: Among the 5064 women interviewed (95.8% response rate), 521 women had clinically confirmed POP, a prevalence of 10.3% (95% CI 9-11%). Among women with POP 37.8% had grade III or IV prolapse. Women with four or more children had the highest proportion of pelvic organ prolapse (75%) followed by women aged 36-40 years (25%).Among women with POP, 60.8% reported their quality of life as greatly or moderately affected; 44.3% had it for more than 5 years; and 78.7% never consulted a doctor.

Conclusions: Pelvic organ prolapse is highly prevalent in rural Pakistan, impacts on women’s everyday lives and remains mainly untreated. Measures should be taken to provide health care services to reduce this burden of disease among women.