What to do If you Think You Have Covid-19: India's Top Doctors Explain Symptoms & Precautions

·3-min read

With an aim to alert and advise citizens facing worrisome second wave of Covid-19, India’s topmost doctors on Wednesday addressed key issues to alleviate fear among citizens on Covid-19 protocol. The virtual address was attended by AIIMS Director Dr Randeep Guleria, Narayana Health Chairman Dr Devi Shetty and Medanta Chairman Dr Naresh Trehan. All three doctors talked in detail about the symptoms of coronavirus, precautions need to be taken if tested positive, quarantine guidelines, use and supply of Remdesivir and oxygen in hospitals, etc.

India registered a record 2,95,041 new Covid-19 case in the last 24 hours and 2,000 deaths, the highest single-day tally for the country so far, Union Health Ministry data showed on Wednesday at 8am.

In the virtual address shared by news agency ANI, the doctors explained what to do if you test positive for Covid-19 infection. Here's what they said:

Dr Devi Shetty

– If you have any symptom like body ache, cold, cough, indigestion, vomiting- I have one important message- get yourself tested for Covid-19. It is the most important thing. -In case you are positive, see a doctor and get his opinion. Do not panic, Covid-19 is common now. It is a problem that can be solved provided you get the medical help at an early stage and follow doctor’s instructions. – There is a possibility that you may be asymptomatic, then, doctors will tell you to stay at home, isolate yourself, wear a mask and check your oxygen saturation every 6 hours. – If your O2 saturation is above 94 per cent then there is no problem. But if it is falling after exercise, then, you need to call a doctor. It is important you get the right treatment at the right time.

Dr Naresh Trehan

– Less percentage of people require hospitalisation. The hospital beds should be utilised judiciously and with responsibility. This responsibility rests on all of us. – We have now made a protocol that Remdesivir to be given not to everyone who tests Covid-19 positive. Only after doctors look at test results, symptoms, comorbidities of a patient, then, it is to be given. Remdesivir isn’t a ‘Ramban’, it only decreases viral load in people who need it. – Today, we have enough oxygen if we try to use it judiciously. I want to tell the public that if you don’t need oxygen then don’t use it as a security blanket. Waste of oxygen will only lead to depriving someone who needs it.

Dr Randeep Guleria

– In Covid-19, more than 85 per cent of people will recover without any specific treatment in the form of Remdesivir etc. Most will have symptoms like common cold, sore throat etc. Over 5-7 days, they will recover with symptomatic treatment. Only 15 per cent may go to moderate disease. – Important to understand that most of us who in home isolation or in the hospital because panic don’t actually need any specific treatment. Only small percentage require Remdesivir. Don’t consider this as a magic bullet. – As a country, if we work together, use oxygen and Remdesivir judiciously, then, there will be no shortage anywhere. In terms of the number of people who need oxygen and oxygen supply, we are well balanced. – Oxygen is a treatment, it’s like a drug. Taking oxygen intermittently is an absolute waste of oxygen. There is no data that shows that this will be of any help to you and therefore you shouldn’t do. – The vaccine prevents you from getting the disease in the form of severe illness. It may not prevent you from getting the infection. Important to understand that even after the vaccine we may have a positive report, it is why important to wear a mask even after vaccine.

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