Jehangir Hospital says, “The rising tide of respiratory infections in Pune serves as a stark reminder of the delicate balance between urbanisation and public health. Factors contributing to this surge include mounting air pollution, densely populated areas, and changing weather patterns. These elements create an ideal breeding ground for respiratory pathogens to thrive and spread.

Addressing this issue requires a multifaceted approach. Stringent air quality regulations, effective waste management, and green initiatives can mitigate pollution levels. Public awareness campaigns on proper hygiene practices and vaccination play a pivotal role in reducing transmission. Accessible healthcare services, early diagnosis, and appropriate treatment are crucial to managing cases effectively.

The increasing number of respiratory infections underscores the urgent need for collaborative efforts between governments, healthcare institutions, and citizens. Only through collective action can Pune breathe easier and safeguard the respiratory well-being of its residents.

Dr Swapnil Kulkarni, Pulmonologist, Sahyadri Super Speciality Hospital, Deccan Gymkhana informed,  “The surge in respiratory infections in Pune is likely a result of several factors, including the escalating pollution levels, increasing population density, and shifting climate patterns. Common respiratory infections observed include colds, flu, pneumonia, and tuberculosis, which can be particularly severe for vulnerable groups such as young children, the elderly, and individuals with underlying health conditions.”

To prevent respiratory infections, there are several proactive measures people can take, such as getting vaccinated, practicing frequent handwashing, and avoiding close contact with sick individuals. Seeking immediate medical attention is crucial if one develops a respiratory infection to receive appropriate treatment.”

Here are additional insights into the causes and treatments of respiratory infections:

Causes: Respiratory infections can stem from various viruses, bacteria, and fungi. Notable viruses responsible for such infections include rhinoviruses, influenza viruses, coronaviruses, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). Among the bacteria, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, and Moraxella catarrhalis are common culprits. 

Treatments: One should visit the doctor in the early course of illness for a specific cure who can prescribe appropriate antibiotics and antivirals. During respiratory infections symptom relief can be achieved through ample rest and appropriate fluid intake. Pain relievers and cough suppressants are also often recommended. In cases where these measures are ineffective, antibiotics may be prescribed to address bacterial infections.”

Madhupriya Dhanwate 

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