Current requirements for preoperative COVID-19 testing are highly variable across jurisdictions, with some requiring preoperative testing for all patients 24-72 hours prior to surgery and some not recommending testing of asymptomatic patients at all
Studies describing low rates of asymptomatic positivity are limited to early in the pandemic, prior to the widespread availability of vaccines and the emergence of variant strains. These studies show very low rates of asymptomatic positives when testing within 72 hours of surgery
Mixed evidence on safety of surgery in asymptomatic COVID-19 infected patients
Preliminary evidence indicates that it may be safe to discontinue asymptomatic preoperative testing, but there are too many unknowns that have not yet been addressed with regards to the impact of vaccination status and the altered pathophysiology associated with currently circulating variants
Badea, A; Groot, G; Reeder, B; Dalidowicz, M; Mueller, M. What is the evidence around testing for asymptomatic COVID on the day of surgery? 2022 Jun 06, Document no.: EOC220505 RR. In: COVID-19 Rapid Evidence Reviews [Internet]. SK: SK COVID Evidence Support Team, c2022. 11 p. (CEST rapid review report).