Deadlock of proctologic practice in Italy during COVID-19 pandemic: a national report from ProctoLock2020

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Gallo G., Sturiale A., De Simone V., Mancini S., Di Tanna G. L., Milito G., ...More

UPDATES IN SURGERY, vol.72, no.4, pp.1255-1261, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 72 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s13304-020-00860-0
  • Journal Name: UPDATES IN SURGERY
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, EMBASE, MEDLINE
  • Page Numbers: pp.1255-1261
  • Keywords: Proctology, ProctoLock2020, Lockdown, COVID-19, SARS-COV-2, Italy
  • Gazi University Affiliated: Yes


Proctology is one of the surgical specialties that suffered the most during COVID-19 pandemic. Using data from a cross-sectional worldwide web survey, we aimed to snapshot the current status of proctologic practice in Italy with differences between three macro areas (North, Centre, South). Specialists affiliated to renowned scientific societies with an interest in coloproctology were invited to join a 27-item survey. Predictive power of respondents' and hospitals' demographics on the change of status of surgical activities was calculated. The study was registered at (NCT 04392245). Of 299 respondents from Italy, 94 (40%) practiced in the North, 60 (25%) in the Centrer and 82 (35%) in the South and Islands. The majority were men (79%), at consultant level (70%), with a mean age of 46.5 years, practicing in academic hospitals (39%), where a dedicated proctologist was readily available (68%). Southern respondents were more at risk of infection compared to those from the Center (OR, 3.30; 95%CI 1.46; 7.47,P = 0.004), as were males (OR, 2.64; 95%CI 1.09; 6.37,P = 0.031) and those who routinely tested patients prior to surgery (OR, 3.02; 95%CI 1.39; 6.53,P = 0.005). The likelihood of ongoing surgical practice was higher in the South (OR 1.36, 95%CI 0.75; 2.46,P = 0.304) and in centers that were not fully dedicated to COVID-19 care (OR 4.00, 95%CI 1.88; 8.50,P < 0.001). The results of this survey highlight important factors contributing to the deadlock of proctologic practice in Italy and may inform the development of future management strategies.