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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 198-202

Early experiences in the management of traumatic spinal injuries at a level 1 trauma center in India during the COVID-19 pandemic

1 Department of Orthopaedics, JPN Apex Trauma Centre, New Delhi, India
2 Department of Orthopaedics, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Tushar R Nayak
Department of Orthopaedics, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi.
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ISJ.ISJ_9_21

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Context: Overwhelmed by COVID-19 patients requiring urgent medical attention and intensive care beds, majority of our medical resources are allocated for the management of the current pandemic. Other urgent cases requiring surgical attention also need to be optimally addressed. Aims: The aim of this article is to report the early results and organizational protocol in the management of traumatic spinal fractures at a level-1 trauma center during the current pandemic. Settings and Design: This is a retrospective study of patients with vertebral fractures operated by a single surgeon between April and October 2020. All patients were tested for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, and the tests were repeated every 72 h. We modified our institutional protocol to aid the early management of emergency traumatic spine cases during this pandemic. Descriptive analysis of data collected from hospital records was carried out using Statistical Package for Social Sciences, Virginia, USA, Version 20. Results: A total of 44 patients were operated. Burst fracture was the most common fracture with a fall from height being the most common mechanism of injury. Two patients tested positive for the novel corona virus. There were no complications and none of the healthcare staff involved in the patient care or patients reported symptoms of COVID-19 during a 30-day follow‐up period. Conclusion: Surgical treatment of patients with vertebral fractures, with strict adherence to personal protective measures and local guidelines, did not increase the risk of contracting SARS‐CoV2 to either healthcare workers or patients during the lockdown period.

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