Guidance for management of cancer surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic

Can J Surg. 2020 May 1;63(22):S2-S4. doi: 10.1503/cjs.005620.


During the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, delaying lifesaving cancer surgeries must be done with extreme caution and thoughtfulness. Modelling indicates that delays in high-risk cancer surgeries beyond 6 weeks could affect long-term outcomes for thousands of Canadians. Consequently, it is possible that postponing cancer surgery without consideration of its implications could cost more lives than can be saved by diverting all surgical resources to COVID-19. This article provides general guidance on supporting curative surgical treatment where appropriate and with available resources.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Betacoronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • Canada / epidemiology
  • Coronavirus Infections* / complications
  • Coronavirus Infections* / epidemiology
  • Critical Care*
  • Decision Making
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Pandemics*
  • Pneumonia, Viral* / complications
  • Pneumonia, Viral* / epidemiology
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Surgical Procedures, Operative*
  • Time Factors