Short Communication

Interventional cytopathology and cancer in Peru: how to act during COVID-19?

7 Dec 2020
Milagros Abad-Licham, Juan Astigueta, Caddie Laberiano Fernández, Himelda Chávez Torres, Grisnery Maquera Torres, Edwin Figueroa, Ricardo Bardales

The worldwide health crisis due to SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) has affected all healthcare systems. Low- and middle-income countries have needed to establish health strategies to combat the pandemic, many of which have collaterally affected the diagnosis and treatment of other illnesses. One of these other illnesses is cancer, which in Peru represents the primary cause of mortality. In recent decades, interventional cytopathology with fine-needle biopsy techniques has emerged as a minimally invasive, rapid, economical and effective procedure for diagnosing and staging cancer. However, in the current health context, it is confronted by the challenge of continuing to function in spite of the pandemic. This article reviews the existing literature on interventional cytopathology, the risk of infection from SARS-CoV-2 and biosafety and provides recommendations for carrying out said procedures for the benefit of the patient and the safety of healthcare staff.

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