Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) at the end of May 2021 has surpassed 167,000,000 cases and 3,400,000 deaths worldwide due to a severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV-2), leading to heavy stress for the healthcare system.
Cancer patients are more susceptible to develop an infection than people without cancer because of their immunosuppression caused by the disease and treatments (surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy). Indeed, chemo- and radiotherapy-related hematologic toxicity, particularly leukopenia and lymphopenia, play a pivotal role in this immunosuppressed state. Therefore, these patients are at higher risk of infection with COVID-19 and a much higher risk of developing more severe forms. Nonetheless, lymphopenia has also proved to affect the oncological prognosis of cancer patients, and thus its importance has been remarked during the present Pandemic. Given this epidemiological context, guidelines for patients with gynaecological cancers requiring multidisciplinary management during the COVID-19 Pandemic have represented a crucial step in limiting their infection while maintaining their chances for a cure.
Therefore, in the present Special Issue, we aim to present evidence on the management of gynaecological malignancies (and Breast Cancer) during the COVID-19 Pandemic and on the critical role of treatment-tailoring to avoid hematologic toxicity given its implications during and beyond the Pandemic.
Dr. Giuseppe Carlo Iorio
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