Cancer Management and Research (2021-01-01)

Impact of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Epidemic on Radiotherapy-Treated Patients with Cancer: A Single-Center Descriptive Study

  • He J,
  • Yang L,
  • Tao Z,
  • Yang J,
  • Zhou Y,
  • Wang R,
  • Zhang Y,
  • Huang Y,
  • Zhou L,
  • Sun B,
  • Gao J

Journal volume & issue
Vol. Volume 13
pp. 37 – 43


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Jian He,1,2,* Liping Yang,1,2,* Zhenchao Tao,1,2 Jing Yang,1,2 Yan Zhou,1,2 Ru Wang,1,2 Yangyang Zhang,1,2 Yifan Huang,1,2 Lingran Zhou,1,2 Bin Sun,1,2 Jin Gao1,2 1Department of Radiation Oncology, The First Affiliated Hospital of USTC, Division of Life Sciences and Medicine, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui Province 230031, People’s Republic of China; 2Department of Radiation Oncology, Anhui Provincial Cancer Hospital, Hefei, Anhui Province 230031, People’s Republic of China*These authors contributed equally to this workCorrespondence: Jin GaoDepartment of Radiation Oncology, Anhui Provincial Cancer Hospital, No. 107 Huan Hu East Road, Hefei 230031, Anhui Province, People’s Republic of ChinaTel +86 15395005376Email [email protected]: The present study investigated hospitalization data of patients receiving radiotherapy at Anhui Cancer Hospital during the COVID-19 epidemic and analyzed the impact of the epidemic on the clinical data of radiotherapy patients to provide references for the feasibility and safety of radiotherapy at other medical institutions.Methods: The present study performed a retrospective analysis of hospitalization data of patients undergoing radiotherapy at the Radiation Department (from January 5 to March 19, 2020 according to the Chinese lunar calendar), who were defined as the epidemic group. Hospitalization data for patients undergoing radiotherapy during the same period in 2019 were used as the control group for comparison with the epidemic group in terms of sex, age, distribution of various cancer types, hospitalization costs, average length of stay, completion rate of radiotherapy, treatment mode, and purpose of radiotherapy.Results: A total of 79 and 115 patients received radiotherapy in the epidemic group and control group, respectively. The number of patients who received radiotherapy declined 31.3% during the epidemic period. The number of head and neck cancer patients who received radiotherapy was 36 (45.57%) in the epidemic group and 32 (27.83%) in the control group, which was a significant difference (χ2=6.476, P=0.011). The proportions of patients with other types of cancer decreased, with no significant difference between the two groups (P> 0.05). No significant differences between the two groups were found in terms of other hospitalization data (P> 0.05).Conclusion: The total number of patients who received radiotherapy decreased during the epidemic period, but the proportion of head and neck cancer increased. The epidemic had no significant effect on other hospitalization data. While strengthening prevention and control measures, we should actively perform radiotherapy to ensure that cancer patients receive timely and safe treatment.Keywords: COVID-19, radiation therapy, malignant cancer