Poor air quality may affect recovered Covid-19 patients: Experts – health

Considering the drop in temperature that deteriorates air quality, doctors in Pune city have issued a word of caution for people suffering from lung ailments, especially those who have recovered from Covid-19.

According to medical experts, deterioration of air quality can also cause complications in patients infected by coronavirus.

Increased level of pollutants in the air can affect people suffering from lung-related disorders such as chronic obstructive lung disease (COPD) and Covid-19, prolonging the process of recovery, they said.

“A drop in air quality makes it more difficult for COPD patients to breathe. We advise COPD patients and those who have recently recovered from Covid-19 not step out in the polluted air,” said Dr Vaibhav Pandharkar, a pulmonologist from Noble Hospital.

Coronavirus disease affects respiratory organs and its effects can be seen even after recovering from the infection.

“In some patients, we have seen the development of lung fibrosis, post their recovery from coronavirus. Hence, people suffering from lung disorders and those who have also recovered from Covid-19 should take extra precautions at a time when pollutants in the air have increased,” he said.

According to Dr Pandharkar, there is an increased risk to lungs and heart of people suffering from comorbidities.

“If people with comorbidities contract coronavirus, it may cause inflammation, which will make it easy for the infection to invade the lungs. For patients of asthma, lung fibrosis or heart disease, the risk of death increases when they also contract the infection,” he said.

Some recent studies have stated that certain air pollutants are likely to enhance susceptibility to Covid-19 death outcomes, the doctor said.

Dr Raziya Nagarwala, a cardiovascular and pulmonary physiotherapist from Sancheti Institute of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, said people suffering from lung-related issues are vulnerable to severe Covid-19 complications.

“This is the reason why we had requested people to avoid bursting firecrackers in the festive season. When we breathe in pollutants, it not only affects our respiratory system, but it also negatively impacts our immunity,” she said.

She further stated that if a person’s lungs are already weak, the chances of contracting Covid-19 increase.

“We have seen many complications while administering physiotherapy to Covid-19 patients, who were already suffering from lung-related disease. Everyone should wear a mask because it not only reduces the viral spread, but it also prevents us from breathing in pollutants,” she said.

(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text.)

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