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The authors review the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the practice of ear surgeries in this article. The pandemic has changed how we practise medicine and introduced new guidelines to ensure safety of healthcare personnel. Studies have demonstrated COVID-19 particles in the cadaver middle ear mucosa of infected hosts. The use of high-speed drills during ear surgeries can generate large amounts of droplets with the potential to transmit the infection. The authors recommend the use of barrier draping techniques for microscopes, and exoscopes to prevent particle dispersion. A Mayo stand can be incorporated within the drape and povidone iodine solution added to the irrigation solution as it is not known to be ototoxic. The surgeon’s arms can be placed through the drapes and delayed removal of drapes after drilling can reduce the risk of airborne particle release and viral transmission. These mitigating measures have been useful at the height of the pandemic. With staff shortages and supply chain issues, we have still to recover from the aftermath of this pandemic.

COVID-19 and otologic surgery.
Zaccor N, Wang W.
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Gauri Mankekar

Department of Otolaryngology-Head Neck Surgery, Louisiana State University Shreveport, Louisiana, USA.

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