Universal Masking Prevents SARS-CoV-2 Transmission

Doctors in masks

In March of 2020, Mass General Brigham (MGB) implemented a universal masking policy that required all staff in the health care system to wear a surgical mask while in the hospital. MGB is comprised of 78,000 employees across 12 Massachusetts-based hospitals, including Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).

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iMASC: A New Reusable, Scalable and Comfortable Face Mask

Mannequin wearing face mask and gogglesThe Injection Molded Autoclavable, Scalable, Comfortable (iMASC) system developed by bioengineers and clinicians at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

At Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the biomedical research lab of Giovanni Traverso, MB, BChir, PhD recently developed a new reusable, scalable alternative to N95 masks, which have been in short supply within healthcare settings during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Deceased COVID-19 Patients Show Hypoxic Injury in the Brain

Human brain
Coronal view of one of the 18 human brains in a study led by Isaac H. Solomon, MD, PhD, a pathologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

While COVID-19 primarily affects the lungs of those infected, many patients have reported a wide range of unusual neurological symptoms. These include headaches, altered mental status, strokes, seizures and loss of smell. Many researchers have hoped that autopsies could shed light on the unknowns of COVID-19, caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.

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Case Series: Teriflunomide Therapy in COVID Patients with MS

Brain scanFrom 7T MRI performed at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Study Patient 1. This is a T2* gradient-echo sequence (0.8 mm isotropic voxels) showing a typical MS lesion (arrow) as oval, and bright, containing a central (dark) vessel.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and their clinicians have had questions and concerns about whether immunotherapies for MS could influence risk for infection or lead to an unfavorable outcome.

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Remdesivir at Forefront of Battle Against COVID-19

Pill bottles of remdisivir

Remdesivir has emerged as a promising therapeutic candidate for the treatment of COVID-19 due to its ability to inhibit pathogenic animal and human coronaviruses, including severe acute respiratory syndrome 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-1).

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Lungs of Deceased COVID-19 Patients Show Vascular Damage

Illustration of lungs with covid in them

SARS-CoV-2 and influenza A (H1N1) are in the same category of virus and both infect the respiratory tract. However, research has shown distinctive vascular changes in the lungs of patients with COVID-19 compared to those with H1N1.

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COVID-19 Increases Risk for Venous Thromboembolism

Blood platelets

Early reports of the COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan, China included evidence of coagulation abnormalities in some patients. Since then, studies have shown an increase in venous thromboembolism (VTE)—including deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE)—in some patients with COVID-19. Higher rates of incidence have been observed in patients in the intensive care unit (ICU) than in other hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

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Managing Acute Kidney Injury in COVID-19 Patients

 

machine hooked up to wiresAt Brigham and Women’s Hospital, nephrologists have observed an increased risk of acute kidney injury (AKI) in COVID-19 patients. Within the intensive care units (ICUs) at the Brigham, about 15 to 20 percent of COVID-19 patients have developed AKI. In some hospitals, the incidence of AKI has been reported to be as high as 25 percent.

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Understanding Unusual Presentations of COVID-19

series of brain scans

Despite being highly contagious, a significant portion of people infected with COVID-19 don’t experience any symptoms. Those people who do exhibit symptoms most commonly experience dry cough, fever and difficulty breathing. However, there are also a myriad of atypical symptoms that may be under-reported.

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Brigham Clinicians Help Develop COVID-19 Clinical Guidelines

“Who knew that rheumatology patients would be right in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis?”

This question was posed by rheumatologist Karen H. Costenbader, MD, MPH, director of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital Lupus Program and chair of the Medical and Scientific Advisory Council for the Lupus Foundation of America. In these roles, she has found herself at the center of the controversy around the use of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and other rheumatology medications in COVID-19. Read More