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In order to prevent in-hospital transmission and potential complications related to SARS-CoV-2 in the perioperative patient, most healthcare institutions require preoperative testing for SARS-CoV-2 prior to proceeding with elective surgery. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends a time and symptom-based duration of isolation for the presumed infectious period. The guidance to avoid retesting of asymptomatic patients in the 90days following a positive reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test is because of the possibility of detection of non-infectious viral shedding. When to reschedule asymptomatic patients who test RT-PCR positive for SARS-CoV-2 preoperatively is of considerable debate, both from the perspective of ensuring a patient's full preoperative fitness, as well as reducing the risk of viral transmission within the hospital. We describe the novel perioperative use of a strand-specific assay to detect minus strand ribonucleic acid (RNA) in a clinical decision-making algorithm to determine optimal timing of elective surgery after a patient tests RT-PCR positive for SARS-CoV-2. This is the first description in the literature of an attempt to further stratify patients who repeatedly test positive for SARS-CoV-2 into infectious versus non-infectious for perioperative planning.
View details for DOI 10.1111/pan.14448
View details for PubMedID 35338765