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Dtsch Med Wochenschr ; 147(10): 41-49, 2022 04.
Article in German | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1852550


BACKGROUND: This study investigates current needs and psychosocial burden of out-patients with cancer during the COVID-19-Pandemic. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Between 11/2020 and 02/2021 122 cancer patients who underwent out-patient treatment at the Comprehensive Cancer Center Munich participated in the study. Based on a standardized, semi-structured interview, participants were asked about their knowledge and informational needs related to COVID-19, risk perception and concerns regarding continuing out-patient treatment, COVID-19 related distress, confidence in the national health system, and their readiness to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Additionally, patients filled out the distress thermometer (DT). RESULTS: More than a third of the patients (34,2 %, n = 41/120) wanted to receive more information about the effects of the coronavirus on their cancer and their treatment. 17,2 % (n = 21/122) had faced changes concerning their current or planned treatment. 42/121 (34,7 %) of the patients were clinically distressed (DT ≥ 5). A possible overload of the health care system was the most commonly reported COVID-related concern (77,9 %, n = 95/122), followed by being concerned that their family members might be additionally worried about them (56,2 %, n = 68/121). 71,2 % (n = 74/104) of the patients are willing to be vaccinated; 60 % (n = 18/30) of those undecided or refusing at the time of the survey expressed a desire to have a consultation with an oncologist before giving their final consent to vaccination. DISCUSSION: Corona-specific distress of cancer patients relates in particular to the course of therapy, but also to a possible overload of the health care system. Oncology care teams should allow space for questions from their patients, acknowledge possible uncertainties, provide emotional support, and draw attention to reliable sources of information.

COVID-19 , Neoplasms , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Neoplasms/epidemiology , Neoplasms/therapy , Outpatients , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2
Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc ; 29(8): 2379-2385, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1130750


PURPOSE: Health care systems in most European countries were temporarily restructured to provide as much capacity as possible for the treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients. Subsequently, all elective surgeries had to be cancelled and postponed for months. The aim of the present study was to assess the pretreatment health status before and after COVID-19-related cancellation and the psychosocial distress caused by the cancellation. METHODS: For this study, a questionnaire was developed collecting sociodemographic data and information on health status before and after the cancellation. To assess psychosocial distress, the validated depression module of the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), was implemented. PHQ-9-Scores of 10 and above were considered to indicate moderate or severe depressive symptoms. In total, 119 patients whose elective orthopaedic surgery was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic were surveyed once at least 8 weeks after the cancellation. RESULTS: Seventy-seven patients (65%; 34 female, 43 male) completed the questionnaire and were included. The predominant procedures were total knee arthroplasty (TKA), hip arthroscopy and foot and ankle surgery. The mean pain level significantly increased from 5.5 ± 2.2 at the time of the initially scheduled surgery to 6.2 ± 2.5 at the time of the survey (p < 0.0001). The pain level before cancellation of the surgery was significantly higher in female patients (p = 0.029). An increased analgetic consumption was identified in 46% of all patients. A mean PHQ-9 score of 6.1 ± 4.9 was found after cancellation. PHQ-9 scores of 10 or above were found in 14% of patients, and 8% exhibited scores of 15 points or above. Significantly higher PHQ-9 scores were seen in female patients (p = 0.046). No significant differences in PHQ-9 scores were found among age groups, procedures or reasons for cancellation. CONCLUSION: Cancellation of elective orthopaedic surgery resulted in pain levels that were significantly higher than when the surgery was scheduled, leading to increased analgesic use. Additionally, significant psychosocial distress due to the cancellation was identified in some patients, particularly middle-aged women. Despite these results, confidence in the national health care system and in the treating orthopaedic surgeons was not affected. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Level III.

COVID-19 , Orthopedic Procedures , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pain , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
Z Psychosom Med Psychother ; 66(3): 220-242, 2020 Sep.
Article in German | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-740596


Psychological stress caused by epidemics among health care workers and implications for coping with the corona crisis: a literature review Objectives: COVID-19 has significantly changed the working and living conditions within a short period. Despite the milder course of the disease in comparison to other countries, employees in the German health care system are particularly affected by the massive impact of the disease on their professional and private lives. From a scientific point of view, summarized empirical evidence made during other epidemics and at the beginning of the COVID-19-pandemic is largely missing. Methods: Narrative review article, literature search on PubMed database. Results: A total of 56 studies were included, 35 of them on the SARS epidemic and seven on COVID-19; included studies reported overall increased stress levels, anxiety and PTSD symptoms due to health care work during various epidemics. Direct contact with patients, quarantine experiences and perceived health risks were further stress factors in epidemics. Participation in intervention studies enabled better management of epidemic-related situations. Conclusions: Healthcare workers are exposed to high workloads because of epidemics, which can have a variety of adverse effects. Recommendations are made for dealing with periods of high exposure during the COVID-19-pandemic.

Adaptation, Psychological , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Health Personnel/psychology , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Stress, Psychological/epidemiology , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2