November 7, 2018
Guidelines on the management of H1N1 influenza were circulated to all hospitals and clinics in Coimbatore by the Indian Medical Association. Doctors have been asked to follow standard protocols to treat dengue and H1N1 and avoid giving steroids to patients suffering from fever
The Department of Health and Family Welfare had expressed concern over the use of steroids like dexamethasone on fever patients as underlying symptoms of fever remain untreated, say doctors.
Minister for Health and Family Welfare C. Vijayabaskar during his visit to Coimbatore Medical College Hospital on Sunday had said notices were sent to IMA as to why action should not be taken against hospitals using dexamethasone to treat fever patients.
IMA Coimbatore secretary V Rajesh Babu said that it had conducted a continuing medical education programme on dengue and H1N1 for doctors last week.
“Steroids mask majority of infections and worsen morbidity and mortality. Unfortunately, they are consumed as self medications or over the counter medicine by the public,” said K Neminathan of Coimbatore Child Trust Hospital, a sentinel WHO doctor who conducted the programme.
“While dexamethasone can aid reducing fever, underlying symptoms of disease, if the patient is actually suffering from dengue and H1N1, will remain masked or in hibernating state. It could also affect the immunity of the patient,” said CMCH Resident Medical Officer R Soundravel.