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Dermatology Online Journal

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Urgent safety considerations for dermatologic surgeons in the COVID-19 pandemic


Dermatologic surgeons are at increased risk of contracting SARS-COV-2. At time of writing, there is no published standard for the role of pre-operative testing or the use of smoke evacuators, and personal protective equipment (PPE) in dermatologic surgery. Risks and safety measures in otolaryngology, plastic surgery, and ophthalmology are discussed. In Mohs surgery, cases involving nasal or oral mucosa are highest risk for SARS-COV-2 transmission; pre-operative testing and N95 masks should be urgently prioritized for these cases. Other key safety recommendations include strict control of patient droplets and expanded pre-clinic screening. Dermatologic surgeons are encouraged to advocate for appropriate pre-operative tests, smoke evacuators, and PPE. Future directions would include national consensus guidelines with continued refinement of safety protocols.

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