DON’T LOOK FOR A FEVER

Hindustan Times (Gurgaon) - - Ht Think! -

Swine flu has claimed the most lives in Ma­ha­rash­tra, which ac­counts for 532 of In­dia’s 1,586 H1N1 deaths. Ex­perts blame the high num­ber of deaths on de­layed di­ag­no­sis and re­sul­tant com­pli­ca­tions. Atyp­i­cal symp­toms are a ma­jor cause for de­lays in di­ag­no­sis.

“Tem­per­a­ture is no longer a key in­di­ca­tor; sud­den breath­less­ness is of­ten the clue to H1N1,” says Dr Neeraj Tu­lara, con­sul­tant in in­ter­nal medicine and in­fec­tious dis­ease at Mum­bai’s Hi­ranan­dani hos­pi­tal.

Among his pa­tients was 61-year-old home­maker Padma Jain, who de­vel­oped a fever of 99 de­grees Cel­sius fol­lowed by an up­set stom­ach and vom­it­ing. Her fever per­sisted for sev­eral days, but tem­per­a­ture didn’t go up, which led to the fam­ily de­lay go­ing to a physi­cian for sev­eral days.

By the time she reached hos­pi­tal, her con­di­tion had de­te­ri­o­rated and she needed to be hos­pi­talised for 20 days, 11 of which she spent in the ICU.

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