Beware of Chickenpox this Summer - The New Indian Express

Beware of Chickenpox this Summer

Published: 20th March 2014 08:49 AM

Last Updated: 20th March 2014 09:04 AM

With the onslaught of summer comes a barrage of diseases. And rejecting the perception that it is mostly children and the economically weaker section who are affected, doctors in the city warn that the changing climatic condition in Bangalore could force any Bangalorean to seek an appointment with them.

Chickenpox seems to be the most dreaded disease during the season and according to Dr Sveta Aggarwal, pediatrician with Medihope Hospital, cases have increased by 10 per cent when compared to last year. “There seems to be a significant rise in chickenpox cases in children, pregnant women and even the new born. It is during the transition from winter to summer that the viruses multiply,” she says.

According to her, other common diseases like measles, jaundice, typhoid and mumps are usually less because they are prevented through vaccination. “People from the economically weaker section are more prone to these diseases mainly because they may not be vaccinated,” she said.

Dr Sai Prasad, pediatric surgeon, Columbia Asia concurs. “There is a sharp increase in chickenpox cases this year. But if parents get their children immunised at the right time, that is, when they are one year of age, then the severity of the disease can be reduced significantly,” he says.

According to Dr Girikumar Venati, internal medicine, Fortis Hospitals, it is not just children, but even adults who are prone to chickenpox. “Recurrence of chickenpox is common during this time in adults, and I have personally seen an abrupt increase in such cases. I have seen 4-5 cases in a week personally, which is quite a number in comparison with last year,” he says.

But Dr Dinesh Kini, Director — Gastroenterology, Sakra World Hospital, states that chances of an epidemic of Hepatitis could increase mainly because of contaminated water. “Hepatitis A and E cases can see an increase during this time of the year because the bug can enter the body through fruit juices and consumption of contaminated water supplied by tankers.  While Hepatitis A can be prevented, there is no vaccine available for Hepatitis E,” he says.

Cases of jaundice, which can affect one even after 15-45 after the virus enters the body, is also prevalent during the season. “Jaundice and typhoid are all a result of contaminated water,” says Dr Kini.

Eyes can also fall prey to diseases during this season, according to Dr K P Manjunath, director, Nethra Eye Hospital.

“Conjunctivitis is common mainly because of the dry dust and heat in the air. UV exposure can also be dangerous and could lead to dry eye,” he says.

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