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Title: Shift of radiotherapy use during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic? : an analysis of German inpatient data
Author(s): Medenwald, Daniel
Brunner, Thomas
Christiansen, Hans
Kisser, Ulrich
Mansoorian, Sina
Vordermark, Dirk
Prokosch, Hans-Ulrich
Seuchter, Susanne A.
Kapsner, Lorenz A.
Issue Date: 2022
Type: Article
Language: English
Abstract: Objective: To assess the change in inpatient radiotherapy related to COVID-19 lockdown measures during the first wave of the pandemic in 2020. Methods: We included cases hospitalized between January 1 and August 31, 2018–2020, with a primary ICD-10 diagnosis of C00–C13, C32 (head and neck cancer, HNC) and C53 (cervical cancer, CC). Data collection was conducted within the Medical Informatics Initiative. Outcomes were fractions and admissions. Controlling for decreasing hospital admissions during holidays, calendar weeks of 2018/2019 were aligned to Easter 2020. A lockdown period (LP; 16/03/2020–02/08/2020) and a return-to-normal period (RNP; 04/05/2020–02/08/2020) were defined. The study sample comprised a control (admission 2018/19) and study cohort (admission 2020). We computed weekly incidence and IR ratios from generalized linear mixed models. Results: We included 9365 (CC: 2040, HNC: 7325) inpatient hospital admissions from 14 German university hospitals. For CC, fractions decreased by 19.97% in 2020 compared to 2018/19 in the LP. In the RNP the reduction was 28.57% (p < 0.001 for both periods). LP fractions for HNC increased by 10.38% (RNP: 9.27%; p < 0.001 for both periods). Admissions for CC decreased in both periods (LP: 10.2%, RNP: 22.14%), whereas for HNC, admissions increased (LP: 2.25%, RNP: 1.96%) in 2020. Within LP, for CC, radiotherapy admissions without brachytherapy were reduced by 23.92%, whereas surgery-related admissions increased by 20.48%. For HNC, admissions with radiotherapy increased by 13.84%, while surgery-related admissions decreased by 11.28% in the same period. Conclusion: Related to the COVID-19 lockdown in an inpatient setting, radiotherapy for HNC treatment became a more frequently applied modality, while admissions of CC cases decreased.
Open Access: Open access publication
License: (CC BY 4.0) Creative Commons Attribution 4.0(CC BY 4.0) Creative Commons Attribution 4.0
Sponsor/Funder: Publikationsfonds MLU
Journal Title: Strahlentherapie und Onkologie
Publisher: Springer Medizin
Publisher Place: Berlin
Original Publication: 10.1007/s00066-021-01883-1
Appears in Collections:Open Access Publikationen der MLU

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