New Delhi is observing a rapid rise in the number of flu cases recently. Facing similar symptoms to that of prolonged illness and coughing, it is reported that H3N2 Influenza is rampant in the state currently. Owing to the sudden weather shift and the temperature changing from extreme cold to warm, the flu symptoms are getting more prominent in people. Speaking to HT Lifestyle, Dr. SK Chhabra, Head of Department -Pulmonary, Primus Hospital, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi, said, “The increase in the number of patients complaining of viral infections and chest congestion demonstrates how seasonal change is having a negative influence on people's health. Pollution is also playing a significant influence in increasing the number of patients affected by viral diseases. The elderly, children and pregnant women are the most vulnerable to infection.”

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Fever, respiratory symptoms like cough and runny nose, as well as other symptoms including body aches, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhoea, are some of the prominent symptoms of H3N2 virus. “Apart from asthmatic patients, there are many additional individuals who have serious lung infections and are having difficulties breathing. Patients are experiencing similar issues as a result of climate change. Individuals with chronic illnesses, such as asthma, must exercise special caution during such weather shifts since they might provoke severe respiratory difficulties and asthma episodes,” added Dr SK Chhabra.

Treatment and precautions:

“Children and adults with H3N2 Virus can be treated with Oseltamivir, zanamivir, peramivir, and baloxavir are currently advised medications and can be obtained with a prescription from your physician. If your doctor has prescribed you antiviral medicine, you should take it exactly as directed by your doctor,” added the expert. He further noted down a few precautionary measures that should be taken to avoid contracting H3N2 virus:

Vaccination: Annual flu vaccinations should be obtained. It is advised to receive it by the end of October.

Hand hygiene: Regularly wash your hands, especially after using the restroom, before consuming food, and before touching your face, nose, or mouth.

Crowded areas: Avoid crowded areas where the virus can quickly spread.

Interactions: Restrict your interactions with sick people.

Self-quarantine: In case of flu, stay at home for 24 hours after the fever has subsided. We must also cover our mouth while coughing or sneezing to avoid spreading the illness.

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