Delhi hospi­tals grap­pling with large num­ber of rheuma­toid arthri­tis pa­tients

Millennium Post - - CITY - YO­GESH KANT

NEW DELHI: Toxic air in the city led to mul­ti­ple num­bers of cases which are ef­fec­tively tak­ing Del­hites in their grip. Spe­cial­ist at AIIMS said that there is a strong in­di­ca­tion that pol­lu­tion sparks a rise in au­toim­mune dis­eases such as rheuma­toid arthri­tis that has wit­nessed a 20 per cent surge in OPD cases at the in­sti­tute with win­ter ap­proach­ing.

“As Di­wali cel­e­bra­tion is round the cor­ner and ex­pected to have air pol­lu­tion, shock­ingly, this will ef­fect the pa­tients suf­fer­ing from res­pi­ra­tory dis­or­der, but it will also con­trib­utes to the au­toim- mune dis­eases,” said Dr Uma Ku­mar, pro­fes­sor and head of the rheuma­tol­ogy depart­ment at AIIMS. She also said res­i­dents dwelling near to roads are more prone to rheumatic arthri­tis.

On the World Arthri­tis Day, with a motto ‘It’s in your hand, take ac­tion,’ rheuma­tol­o­gist at AIIMS are launched an aware­ness pro­gramme about rheumatic and mus­cu­laskele­tal dis­eases (RMDS) and let the pa­tients aware about the early di­ag­no­sis and later can en­joy good qual­ity of life with ( RMDS).

The speak­ers said it has been ob­served that preva­lence of rheuma­tol­gi­cal ill­ness is in­creas­ing in the so­ci­ety par­tic­u­larly metro cities be­cause of in­creased life ex­pectancy, life style changes and en­vi­ron­men­tal fac­tors like un­hy­gienic liv­ing con­di­tions and pol­lu­tion, other so­cioe­co­nomic fac­tors.

De­lay in ini­ti­a­tion of treat­ment re­sult in joint de­for­mity and ir­re­versible or­gan dam­age, also, state of on­go­ing in­flam­ma­tion in the body leads to pre­ma­ture atheroscerois, hy­per­ten­sion, coro­nary artery dis­ease, cere­brovas­cu­lar ac­ci­dents and re­duced the life­span by 10 years of ex­pected life ex­pectancy, said Dr Uma Ku­mar.

Dr Ku­mar also added that RA pa­tients have six fold in­creased risk for hav­ing a silent MI and 2.5 times higher risk for de­vel­op­ing heart fail­ure than non-ra in­di­vid­u­als.

Rheuma­tol­ogy is a ne­glected sub­ject in the health care do­main and con­tin­ues to be poorly rec­og­nized spe­cialty in In­dia. “There are ap­proxi- mately four ded­i­cated full time spe­cial­ists serv­ing a bil­lion plus peo­ple. Mil­lions of suf­fer­ers of RA pa­tients seeks re­lief from care providers in the coun­try and never go beyond a fam­ily physi­cian.

Ac­cord­ing to the state­ment, “30, 000 pa­tients were ex­am­ined in year 2016-17, more­over, nearly four months wait­ing pe­riod for new pa­tients,”

“There are es­ti­mated re­quire­ment of rheuma­tol­o­gist for In­dia is about 10, 000. There is dire need of pro­fes­sional and teach­ers in the spe­cialty. Even a mod­est aug­men­ta­tion of the present strength will make a size­able dent on the pre­vail­ing sit­u­a­tion,” the state­ment added.

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