There have been numerous cases of respiratory tract infections during the past two weeks, manifesting as fever, cough, runny or clogged nose, body aches, and headaches. Influenza, including influenza A, H3N2, H1N1, and other respiratory viruses, is the most common diagnosis: S Chatterjee, M.D.
New Delhi: The incidences of H3N2 influenza, which afflict people of all ages, including children, have increased recently, according to experts in the Delhi and NCR region.
Dr. S. Chatterjee, a senior physician in internal medicine at Apollo Hospital, stated that influenza has been identified as the primary cause of the majority of recent cases.
“There have been numerous cases of respiratory tract infections during the past two weeks, manifesting as fever, cough, runny or clogged nose, body aches, and headaches. Influenza in the forms of influenza A, H3N2, H1N1, and other respiratory viruses are the most common diagnoses” he said.
He advised people to use greater caution if they have pre-existing diseases like diabetes or pulmonary issues.
“COVID-19 is quite rare. The majority of cases are responding well to symptomatic treatment, but those with underlying pulmonary conditions, cardiac patients, diabetics, the elderly, and those with impaired immune systems should exercise caution” he added.
Dr. Sameer Bhati, the Director of Star Imaging and Path Lab and a public health expert, stated that the bulk of the most recent flu cases had been identified as H3N2.
“Flu cases where H3N2 is primarily identified after diagnosis have increased, as seen by our observations. For its validation, we use RT PCR, which involves RNA extraction from the samples and amplification using RT PCR technology. According to the fluorescent dye used for each influenza virus, including H1N1, H3N2, H5N1, and H7N9, the results are then interpreted. In general, when H3N2 predominates, the flu cases are severe for those in At-Risk Groups like older adults and younger children, while those with chronic medical conditions have a higher risk of developing flu complications due to weakened immune systems and may also need to be hospitalised” he said.
Dr. Chandra Sekhar Singha, a senior consultant at the paediatric intensive care unit of Madhukar Rainbow Children’s Hospital, stated that H3N2 infections are also occurring in children.
“The symptoms of influenza virus infection can range from being asymptomatic to being fatal. An infection with the H3N2 influenza A virus. H3N2 illness cases are increasing this season,” he said.
These viruses, according to him, can infect youngsters under the age of five. “Along with other pathogens including the rhinovirus and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). Children under the age of five are more frequently affected than those under the age of two, and vice versa. Children may experience a cough, cold, and a high-grade fever. Some kids are struggling with serious respiratory issues. This is especially common in infants under a year old, as well as in people with chronic respiratory and neurological conditions,” he explained.
According to Dr. Chandra Sekhar Singha, some kids also need hospitalisations. “Even some children need to be admitted to the hospital for oxygen therapy. A life-threatening viral pneumonia brought on by H3N2 virus may necessitate extensive breathing assistance, such as a mechanical ventilator,” he added.
He described how to prevent illness by avoiding visits to busy areas, wearing masks, and washing your hands. “By staying away from busy areas, washing hands often, and wearing a mask, one can reduce their risk of contracting the H3N2 virus. Children at high risk, such as those with chronic lung disease, chronic renal disease, and immunological deficiencies, should get vaccinated against the flu every year,” he said.
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