Dr. Thanh Nguyen

COVID-19: Fewer Hospitalizations for Subarachnoid Brain Bleeding During Pandemic

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dr. Thanh Nguyen

Dr. Nguyen

Dr. Thanh Nguyen MD
Director of Interventional Neurology/ Neuroradiology
Boston Medical Center

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: During the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in the spring of 2020, there were many regional and sometimes national reports of declines in stroke and myocardial infarction volumes. Our goal was to understand whether these declines were also seen for other neurological emergencies such as subarachnoid hemorrhage hospitalizations and ruptured aneurysm endovascular treatments.

 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings? Were there fewer falls from less activity? 

Response: The main findings in this multicenter, multinational study, were that there was a decline in subarachnoid hemorrhage hospitalizations, and in particular, subarachnoid hemorrhage hospitalizations related to ruptured intracranial aneurysms.

Correspondingly, there was also a relative decline in ruptured aneurysm endovascular treatments overall. However, in the tertile of patients who at baseline, had low volume of ruptured aneurysm endovascular treatment prior to the pandemic, we noted an increase in ruptured aneurysm endovascular coiling volumes during the pandemic despite an overall decrease of subarachnoid hemorrhage hospitalizations in this tertile. This suggests a shift to treating patients with ruptured aneurysms to endovascular methods compared to open surgical modality.

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Similar to other reports of a relative decline in stroke and myocardial infarction hospitalizations, there was a relative decline in hospitalizations for subarachnoid hemorrhage and aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The decline in subarachnoid hemorrhage hospitalizations was also seen in areas where there was a low COVID-19 burden of patients, suggesting this decline was not related to access to hospital care. 

MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: I would like to thank Dr. Nogueira, co-Principal Investigator, Mr. Muhammad Qureshi, lead statistician of the project, and our many collaborators across the world who collaborated with us in this project.

No pertinent disclosures.


Nguyen TN, Haussen DC, Qureshi MM Japanese Society of Vascular and Interventional Neurology Society (JVIN), et al
Decline in subarachnoid haemorrhage volumes associated with the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic
Stroke and Vascular Neurology 2021;svn-2020-000695. doi: 10.1136/svn-2020-000695

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Last Updated on April 6, 2021 by Marie Benz MD FAAD