Mumbai: Respiratory Issues On Rise Due To Varying Temperature, Pollution

Mumbai: Respiratory Issues On Rise Due To Varying Temperature, Pollution

In last two weeks, number of patients ailing from persistent cough, severe sore throat issues has significantly risen

Swapnil MishraUpdated: Tuesday, March 05, 2024, 02:08 AM IST
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Mumbai: Respiratory Issues On Rise Due To Varying Temperature, Pollution | Reynold/ FPJ

The number of patients ailing from persistent cough, cold and severe sore throat issues has significantly risen in the last two weeks. According to doctors, too much fluctuation in day and night temperature is to be blamed for the worrying surge. However, some medicos also linked the rise in such ailments to consistent poor air quality. According to the weather forecast, cold winds and low temperatures will prevail in Mumbai for the next few days.

To put things in perspective, let's take the case of 17-year-old Sameer Chavan, a resident of Lalbaugh area. Although he had no underlying comorbidities, he developed a cough in mid-February, which gradually increased to cold. After several rounds of antibiotics and a few chest x-rays, he was diagnosed with upper respiratory tract infection. In the last two months, doctors have observed a rise in patients like Chavan, who suffer from persistent coughs even after full recovery from a viral illness. These patients often do not respond to common cough medication and require inhaled steroids.

According to doctors, nearly 40-50% patients, who recently visited the outpatient department (OPD) of public and private-run hospitals, complained of upper respiratory cough, cold and dizziness. Health officials have attributed this not only to weather fluctuation but to prolonged suffering from respiratory issues resulting from pollution and breathing of smog-filled air. They also underlined people's carelessness towards health as one of the reasons behind such diseases.

“In my many years of practice in Mumbai, I have never seen air quality as poor as it is now. A majority of my patients are suffering from prolonged cough and severe wheezing, with some still coughing persistently even after receiving treatment,” said JJ Hospital physician Dr Madhukar Gaikwad. Recently, he saw 8-10 cases of dry cough everyday. A senior health doctor from the private hospital said that 80% of the patients are having problems triggered by air pollution.

“We are seeing an upward trend in influenza cases, mostly H3N2, particularly in the last 15 days. Many patients are complaining of persistent dry cough for up to a few weeks. People with lung and heart conditions are presenting with more severe conditions, including pneumonia, that need hospitalisation,” said a JJ Hospital doctor. 

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