To establish the role of BCG instillations in the incidence and mortality of COVID-19.
PATIENTS AND METHODS
NMIBC patients in instillations with BCG (induction or maintenance) during 2019/2020 were included, establishing a COVID-19 group (with a diagnosis according to the national registry) and a control group (NO-COVID). The cumulative incidence (cases/total patients) and the case fatality rate (deaths/cases) were established, and compared with the national statistics for the same age group. T-test was used for continuous variables and Fisher's exact test for categorical variables.
175 patients were included. Eleven patients presented CIS (11/175, 6.3%), 84/175 (48.0%) Ta and 68/175 (38.9%) T1. Average number of instillations = 13.25 ± 7.4. One hundred sixty-seven patients (95.4%) had complete induction. Forty-three patients (cumulative incidence 24.6%) were diagnosed with COVID-19. There is no difference between COVID-19 and NO-COVID group in age, gender or proportion of maintenance completed. COVID-19 group fatality rate = 1/43 (2.3%). Accumulated Chilean incidence 70–79 years = 6.3%. Chilean fatality rate 70–79 years = 14%.
According to our results, patients with NMIBC submitted to instillations with BCG have a lower case-fatality rate than the national registry of patients between 70 and 79 years (2.3% vs. 14%, respectively). Intravesical BCG could decrease the mortality due to COVID-19, so instillation schemes should not be suspended in a pandemic.