The reduced risk of COVID-19 lasts longer than previously known, up to 13 months after surgery. The results of the research have been published JAMA Network Open.
Researchers used the electronic health records of 3,997 adult surgical patients with a history of SARS-CoV-2 infection who underwent surgery at VUMC between March 2020 and December 2021. Median time from COVID diagnosis to surgery was 98 days.
COVID-19: Perioperative Risk Assessment
The team analyzed the composite odds of various cardiovascular complications within 30 days after surgery: deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, cerebrovascular accident, myocardial injury, acute kidney injury, and death.
It then continued to decline steadily over the next 10 months, reaching approximately 8% 400 days after a COVID-19 diagnosis. The rate of risk reduction was not affected by patients’ COVID-19 vaccination status.
“Compared to previous population-based studies on this issue, ours differed by using a more extensive follow-up of surgical outcomes and a longer time horizon than the diagnosis of COVID-19,” said Robert Freundlich, MD, MSCI, associate professor of Anesthesiology and Biomedical Informatics. study with critical care medicine fellow John Bryant, MD.
“As we’re in the middle of our study, based on postoperative lung outcomes, one medical society has recommended delaying surgery for up to 12 weeks after COVID-19 in more severe cases of COVID-19,” Freundlich said. “Meanwhile, for this array of cardiovascular problems, we were surprised to find in our data that there was still a significant downward trend in risk more than a year after a COVID diagnosis.
“In the case of a given patient, many considerations can influence when surgery is best, and our results further suggest that physicians and patients would do well to include proximity to COVID-19 in their thinking.”