The following is a summary of “Effect of Cardiopulmonary Bypass on SARS‐CoV‐2 Vaccination Antibody Levels,” published in the August 2023 issue of Cardiology by Strobel et al.
Adults who have heart surgery are at risk of respiratory complications, such as COVID-19. Getting vaccinated can help reduce this risk, but the impact of cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) on vaccine effectiveness is not completely known. Researchers performed a prospective study to assess CPB’s impact on post-cardiac surgery COVID-19 vaccine antibody levels.
The study enrolled 77 adults undergoing cardiac surgery with CPB at a single institution. All received complete COVID-19 vaccination before CPB. Antibody levels were measured pre-CPB, postoperative day 1, and about 1 month later. Linear regression analyzed associations between variables and antibody change.
The results demonstrated participant’s antibody level significantly dropped on postoperative day 1 (−2091 AU/mL, P<0.001) but increased by 1-month post-CPB (2465 AU/mL, P=0.015), returning to pre-CPB levels (P=0.983). Notably, 2 participants (2.63%) had postoperative symptomatic COVID-19 pneumonia; 1 case led to mortality (1.3%).
The study found COVID-19 vaccine antibodies dropped after CPB but rebounded in a month, with one related mortality. This highlighted the need for increased precautions during cardiac surgery’s perioperative phase.