Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic
on Management of Head
and Neck Malignancy
Dr. Annanya Soni,
Assistant Professor, Department of ENT, AIIMS RBL, Raebareli, Uttar Pradesh, India.
With an increasing number of COVID-19 cases and a lack of definitive treatment, there is an increasing burden on already stressed health care sector in India. The patients that require medical and surgical intervention need to be triaged and provided with adequate treatment. India has a major chunk of head and neck malignancy in the world attributable to tobacco use. These patients when diagnosed early have a fair survival rate. Health personnels bear the responsibility to provide early and adequate treatment to these patients and at the same time, need to follow all measures to contain the spread of the virus. The present review highlights the various issues and newer guidelines in the management of head and neck malignancy patients during the COVID pandemic. The current review aims to present a comprehensive outlook of the updated evidence base available from PUBMED and other search engines. In India, treatment of head and neck malignancy patients are severely affected at this time of COVID-19, due to the long waiting period, delayed diagnosis, limited dedicated centres for head and neck cancer. The pandemic had diverted resources and manpower leading to potentially poor outcome of the head and neck malignancy patients. Triage policy, safety precautions for health care staff is the need of the hour and should be imbibed in regular practice.