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American Association for Hand Surgery

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Impact of COVID Pandemic on the Management of OBPP
Mohamed Abdel-Wahed, M.D., Ph.D., Mostafa Alfishawy, M.D., Ph.D., Hisham Abdelghani, M.D., Ph.D., Ashraf N Moharram, MD, Mostafa Mahmoud, M.D., Ph.D. and Ayman Shaheen, M.D., Ph.D., Cairo university, Cairo, Egypt

Introduction:
COVID-19 changed the shape of medical practice in many aspects. A lot of administrative and regulatory steps were newly implemented to safely cope with the situation. The access to medical service was questionable for many during the peaks of pandemic waves and quarantine restrictions. The Obstetric brachial plexus palsy (OBPP) clinic in our pediatric hospital hospitals receives 230 cases of neonatal palsy on average per annum and operate for primary nerve reconstruction on 20 cases (mean records of 2011-2021). Herein we aimed at identification of the effect of COVID-19 on OBPP patients and the possible etiologies.
Methods:
We did a retrospective chart review of all OBPP patients that presented in the 12 months following the COVID-19 pandemic in the nation and assessed outcomes and surveyed parents for the possible causes for the delay in presentation or management.
Results:
At our center 60 patients were evaluated for OBPP during the time of the study, 10 cases (16.6%) were operated for primary nerve reconstruction with ongoing improvement. Another 24 cases were delayed to present with a variable outcomes. The main driving force for delay was fear of hospitalization.
Conclusion:
Pandemics have a huge impact on healthcare, but timely management of OBPP is crucial and hospitals should have a system for risk stratification of patients and notification of patients about infection prevention measures to encourage early presentation.


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