Mumbai: Following the death of a 64-year-old man, who had tested positive for coronavirus, on Tuesday, doctors have warned senior citizens to observe self-quarantine, as they are the most vulnerable population.
Doctors have also cautioned that people with cardiac, respiratory and diabetic issues have low immunity which makes them the most vulnerable to the infection. In Maharashtra, nearly 60 per cent of the 41 patients hospitalized are senior citizens.
According to the Centre for Disease Control, older adults and people with chronic medical conditions, including heart, lung diseases and diabetes, are most at risk from becoming seriously ill from COVID-19.
Dr Nimit Shah, interventional cardiologist, said patients with compromised heart function may be at a higher risk of complications from coronavirus.
Although there is no research on this subject, it can be safely believed that elderly people, people with poor heart function, diabetes, kidney and lung diseases are at greater risk and these factors could cause deterioration in the patient's condition and prove fatal.
“People with heart and circulatory conditions, complications of diabetes should be extra-vigilant because the threat of coronavirus increases as these patients have low immunity,” informed Dr. Shah.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause diseases ranging from the common cold to life-threatening pneumonia. People diagnosed with the infection suffer from fever, cough, shortness of breath, muscle ache, confusion, headache, sore throat, rhinorrhea, chest pain, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting.
According to Dr Om Srivastava, Epidemiologist, people with chronic respiratory illnesses, such as asthma and lung disease, have increased risk of developing COVID-19.
“In case of respiratory conditions like acute asthma, it causes inflammation of the airways. COVID-19 worsens the condition with further infection, as it targets the airways,” he said.
Dr Suhas Khaire, Consultant Endocrinologist and Diabetes superspecialist, Zen Multispeciality Hospital, Mumbai, said as per the studies in China and Wuhan, diabetics are more likely to experience acute symptoms as compared to non-diabetics. Therefore, people with diabetes should take extra precautions but at the same time, there is no need to panic.