Hospitals in Delhi see surge in seasonal flu cases among children
Amid the ongoing coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic in Delhi which has infected 1,438,428 people till now, hospitals in the national capital are also seeing a surge in cases of seasonal flu among children, news agency PTI reported on Friday. The symptoms of seasonal flu are similar to that of Covid-19 including fever, cough, sore throat, headache.
Amid the threats of a possible third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, experts suggested during a recent meeting of the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) that the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP)-led government should continue with robust testing to contain the spread of Covid-19 during the flu season.
Speaking to PTI, doctors at the PSRI Hospital said that 70% of the children coming to the outpatient department (OPD) were having flu-like symptoms. Dr Sarita Sharma, a senior consultant of paediatrics at the hospital, said children have been coming with high fever of up to 102 to 103 for the past three to four days. At least 15-20% of them require hospitalisation, the doctor said.
“Besides cough, cold, poor oral intake, vomiting has also been seen among the children. Cough is dry and spasmodic for small children below five years of age. Few children are also having wheezing problems. This is seasonal flu caused by a virus affecting the respiratory tract like RSV and Influenza,” Dr Sharma further said.
On the other hand, another medical practitioner, Dr Meena from Aakash Healthcare in Delhi’s Dwarka, said there has been a sharp rise in cases of fever along with cough, cold and vomiting.
Infants below the age of one have been showing severe symptoms and few of them had to be admitted, Dr Meena said. “Many of them suffer from temperatures as high as 103-104 degrees and the fever does not decrease after oral medication sometimes,” she added. Advising people to exercise proper respiratory hygiene and avoid going to crowded places, Dr Meena said that children should be kept at a distance from a person who is experiencing cold or fever.
The doctor also pointed out that this time cases of dengue in Delhi are also being reported among children. “We are seeing three to five positive cases of dengue among children daily for almost two weeks. Children are symptomatic, show fever, body ache, fatigue symptoms and are diagnosed later after tests,” Dr Meena further told the news agency. She said that her hospital has admitted three to four children with the vector-borne disease.
Till now, the Delhi government has not expressed fears over the dengue outbreak, with health minister Satyendar Jain saying that the 158 cases recorded are in control and the government is ready to deal with any situation arising out of the disease.
(With PTI inputs)