Personal protective equipment for surgeons during the COVID‐19 pandemic (search done in April 2020)

Added June 15, 2020

Citation: Jessop ZM, Dobbs TD, Ali SR, et al. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for Surgeons during COVID‐19 Pandemic: A Systematic Review of Availability, Usage, and Rationing. British Journal of Surgery. 2020 May 12.

What is this? A variety of types of personal protective equipment (PPE) are being used to try to protect healthcare workers, such as surgeons, from infection with COVID-19.

In this rapid review, the authors searched for articles about the use of PPE in surgical settings during the COVID-19 pandemic. They did their search in April 2020. They included 95 studies, covering sources of transmission (29 studies), types of PPE (8), specialty specific considerations (25), PPE shortages and rationing (23), ethics (7) and innovation (3).

What was found: At the time of this review, the included articles identified aerosol generating procedures, fumes released in surgery and contaminated body fluids as important sources of transmission of COVID-19.

At the time of this review, the included articles showed that full PPE is recommended in the performance of aerosol generating procedures during surgery, general surgery laparoscopy, endoscopy; similar procedures in gynaecology, paediatric surgery, urology, orthopaedics, head and neck cancer and neurosurgery; and procedures involving close face-to-face contact for maxillofacial, ENT and plastic surgery.


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