Mar 01, 2023, 08:22 am
Spring flu has gripped India causing a painful rasping cough for a longer period. According to a report by the Hindustan Times, the key reason behind the surge in flu cases is due to low immunity and the relative unpopularity of annual flu shots in the country.
Dr GC Khilnani, former head of the pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine department at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) told Hindustan Times that every other person is down with fever, loss of voice, and breathlessness.
“An uncontrollable cough, with or without wheezing, is a frequent symptom. The Influenza A virus (H3N2) is frequently diagnosed when tested," he told the daily.
The spike in flu cases in the country is similar to what the West experienced between September and January last year. The World Health Organization mentioned influenza A(H1N1)pdm09, A(H3N2), and influenza B viruses circulated in several countries.
A research paper--Household Transmission of Influenza A viruses in 2021-22 stated that "Loss of natural immunity from lower rates of influenza infection and documented antigenic changes in circulating viruses may have resulted in increased susceptibility to influenza virus infection during the 2021-2022 influenza season".
Several doctors in India have said that they are witnessing cases of prolonged cough post-flu, including influenza, RSV (respiratory syncytial virus), adenovirus, rhinovirus, etc.
The probable reasons for prolonged cough could be pollution, new mutant pathogens reflux diseases (acidity), and irrational use of antibiotics, according to the doctors.
To combat respiratory infections, doctors have advised patients to wear masks and avoid crowded places.
"The vaccine against common flu is available and people must take it," the doctors told the daily.