The Decline in the Number of Plastic Surgeries Under the Novel Coronavirus Epidemic in Japan Was Attributed to the Decline In Patients with Acute Diseases such as Trauma and Malignant Tumors

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Masaki Fujioka Kiyoko Fukui Kentaro Yoshino Marie Idemitsu


[Introduction] Since the first infected person was confirmed in Japan on January 15, 2020, the novel coronavirus has become a serious crisis management issue, and people's lifestyles have changed significantly. We examined how plastic surgery patient trends have changed over the past three years of the COVID-19 epidemic. Methods: We compared the average number of surgical patients during the five years before the outbreak of COVID-19 and the number of cases during the epidemic (January 2020-December 2022). In addition, we classified the surgeries performed during this period into acute-stage diseases (trauma, malignant tumors, acute infections) and non-acute-stage diseases (chronic ulcers, benign tumors, congenital anomalies), and examined changes in surgical tendencies. Due to the COVID-19 epidemic during this time, the period during which surgery was recommended to be postponed was approximately 340 days. [Results] While the number of surgeries in all departments decreased significantly (-6.2%), the number of plastic surgeries decreased by 13.2%. Comparing the acute disease group and non-acute disease group, there was no significant change in the non-acute disease group, while the acute disease group showed a significant decrease of -17.8%. In particular, surgery for trauma decreased significantly by -18.2%, and surgery for malignant tumors decreased by -25.4%.  The decrease in injuries is considered to be related to the fact that the number of traffic accidents in 2020-2021 was the lowest on record, and that the number of injuries was on a downward trend nationwide due to the COVID-19 epidemic. The decrease in malignant tumors is considered to be related to the 30-50% decrease in the number of people undergoing health checkups in 2020-2021. [Conclusion] 1. The number of plastic surgeries has decreased compared to before the COVID-19 epidemic. 2. The number of surgeries in the acute disease group decreased significantly, and the decrease in the number of surgeries for trauma and malignancies was marked. 3. Even during the COVID-19 epidemic, the impact on the decrease in the number of surgeries was less pronounced in the second half.

Keywords: novel coronavirus infection, COVID-19, plastic surgery, surgical restrictions, surgery statistics

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FUJIOKA, Masaki et al. The Decline in the Number of Plastic Surgeries Under the Novel Coronavirus Epidemic in Japan Was Attributed to the Decline In Patients with Acute Diseases such as Trauma and Malignant Tumors. Medical Research Archives, [S.l.], v. 11, n. 4, apr. 2023. ISSN 2375-1924. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 22 apr. 2024. doi:
Research Articles


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