KOCHI: At a time when the number of Covid cases and associated ICU admissions being reported daily are coming down in the state, other fungal and bacterial infections, caused due to low immunity and general body weakness in those who have recovered from Covid, are on the rise. Experts have attributed this to Covid infection and treatment having taken a toll on the patients’ immunity. Common fungal and bacterial infections, including aspergillosis and tuberculosis cases, have been reported from various districts across the state.
As the number of ICU admissions due to Covid started coming down in various hospitals, more and more non-Covid admissions have been recorded in private hospitals. In a week, two-five cases of tuberculosis were reported in patients who had recovered from Covid at a major private hospital in Kochi. Also, according to experts, hundreds of aspergillosis fungal infections, which are treatable and not as serious when compared to black fungus or mucormycosis, have also been reported in the state.
“A major reason for the rise in fungal and bacterial infections would be low immunity. Covid treatment, steroids and medicines take a toll on the body, As a result, the immunity of the patient is compromised. It takes some time for the body to build up its immunity again to fight other common infections that exist around us. These funguses and bacteria exist indoors and outdoors. It depends on the capacity of our bodies to fight these,” said Dr Monu Varghese, pulmonologist based in Kochi.
Mostly, those above the age of 40 years with comorbidities or who had undergone organ transplantation are at risk of contracting these infections. “But youngsters can also get these infections,” said a doctor with a hospital in Thrissur. “Infections can even be acquired from hospitals. Aspergillosis is a common fungal infection that is acquired from ICUs,” the doctor added.Those with respiratory issues and comorbidities should be vigilant and use masks when they interact with people even after Covid recovery.