Clinical Presentation of Acute Cholecystitis during the COVID-19 Outbreak

Yehuda Hershkovitz, Oded Zmora, Hilli Nativ, Itamar Ashkenazi, Jonathan Hammerschlag, Igor Jeroukhimov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has had a significant impact on healthcare systems worldwide. The fear of seeking medical attention to avoid the possibility of being infected may have altered the course of some diseases. OBJECTIVES: To describe our experience with the management of patients with acute cholecystitis during the pandemic at our medical center. METHODS: We compared patients treated for acute cholecystitis between 1 March and 31 August 2020 (Group I) to patients admitted with the same diagnosis during the same months in 2019 (Group II). We evaluated demographics, presenting symptoms, laboratory and imaging findings at presentation, the disease's clinical course, management, and outcome. RESULTS: Group I consisted of 101 patients and group II included 94 patients. No differences were noted for age (66 years, IQR 48-78 vs. 66 years, IQR 47-76; P = 0.50) and sex (57.4% vs. 51.1% females; P = 0.39) between the two groups. The delay between symptom onset and hospital admission was longer for Group I patients (3 days, IQR 2-7 vs. 2 days, IQR 1-3; P = 0.002). Moderate to severe disease was more commonly encountered in Group I (59.4% vs. 37.2%, P = 0.003). Group I patients more often failed conservative management (36% vs. 6%, P = 0.001) and had a higher conversion rate to open surgery (15.4% vs. 0%, P = 0.025). CONCLUSIONS: Patients presenting with acute cholecystitis during the COVID-19 pandemic more often presented late to the emergency department and more showed adverse outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)306-309
Number of pages4
JournalIsrael Medical Association Journal
Volume24
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 May 2022

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