The Increased Risk of Complicated Ureteral Stones in the Era of COVID-19 Pandemic.

Ureteral stone disease may be an emergent condition if the appropriate management is not performed in a timely manner. As the COVID-19 continues to spread globally, isolation and restriction orders taken by the governments have become the cores to control the pandemic. In this study, we, therefore, aimed to investigate the ureteral stone presentations in a high-volume university hospital during the COVID-19 restrictions order period.

The data of 149 patients who were hospitalized due to ureteral stone both during the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions period and the corresponding period (non-COVID-19) of the previous year were collected and analyzed retrospectively. Unpaired Student's t test was used to compare continuous variables. The categorical data were assessed using a chi-square test.

Of 149 patients, 35 were hospitalized in the COVID-19 period. While the mean age and the stone characteristics of the two groups did not differ significantly, serum creatinine levels (1.91.85 vs 1.150.64) and the white blood cell counts (12.456.54 vs 8.214.15) at hospital admission were significantly higher in the COVID-period group (p=0.034 and p=0.005, respectively). According to the priority classification of the European Urology Guidelines Office Rapid Reaction Group Urolithiasis Guidelines Panel applicable during the COVID-19 pandemic, a significant difference was observed between the two periods (X2=9.907, p=0.019). In particular, the rate of emergency cases was found more than 3-fold in the COVID-19 period. Although there was no significant difference in terms of the grade of hydronephrosis at hospital admission between the two groups, the rate of grade 3 and 4 hydronephroses was higher in the COVID-period group (1.8- and 3.3-fold, respectively).

The rate of complicated ureteral stone disease significantly increased during the COVID-19 restrictions period. Urologists should prioritize the patients most in need of urgent care during COVID-19 like social-crisis.

Journal of endourology. 2020 Jul 15 [Epub ahead of print]

Murat Gül, Mehmet Kaynar, Mehmet Yıldız, Ali Furkan Batur, Murat Akand, Ozcan Kılıc, Serdar Göktaş

Selcuk Universitesi, 52993, Selcuk University, Konya, Turkey, 42130., Konya Education and Research Hospital, Urology, Hacı Şaban Mah. Meram Yeniyol Caddesi No: 97, Konya, Turkey, 42040; ., Konya, Turkey, Turkey; ., Konya, Turkey, Turkey; ., Selcuk University, School of Medical, Urology, Selcuk Universitesi, Alaaddin Keykubat Kampusu, Tip Fakultesi Hastanesi, E-Blok, Kat:1, Uroloji Poliklinigi, Selcuklu, Konya, Turkey, 42075; ., Konya, Turkey; ., Selcuk University, Faculty of Medicine, Urology, Konya, Turkey; .