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It is a part of body's immune reponse, says Dr Ballal as autopsy reports suggest Thrombosis caused many COVID-19 deaths 

Dr Sudarshan Ballal, who is the chairman of Manipal Hospitals and member of expert committee spearheading Karnataka's Anti-Covid fight, called for ramping up tests.

Published: 03rd May 2020 01:09 AM  |   Last Updated: 03rd May 2020 01:09 AM   |  A+A-

Dr Sudarshan Ballal

Express News Service

BENGALURU: While disturbing reports are being circulated about autopsy reports of Covid patients revealing thrombosis (clotting) and not mere inflammation, TNIE spoke to Dr Sudarshan Ballal who is the chairman of Manipal Hospitals and member of expert committee spearheading Karnataka's Anti-Covid fight. Ballal said it is part of the body's extreme immune response called a cytokine storm, where the organs subjected to severe viral infection responds this way, and medical experts using anti-inflammatory drugs, sometimes anti-coagulants. It is still early in the course of the disease about what the protocol should be, he said.  

The expert committee of which Ballal is a part had spoken about opening up the lockdown after ramping up testing and securing the health system. But now the lockdown has been extended by two weeks and when asked about it Dr Ballal said that is for the government to decide because they take a call depending on many factors and obviously medical advise has been given, it is a very thin line here.

He said we need to ramp up testing as we may have missed some cases of Covid due to lack of testing and overall Covid cases and fatalities in this country have been low. 

About the testing kits, he said Chinese test kits are suspected to be faulty and even ICMR has pointed this out. The government has gone out to procure more testing kits and it will be available in the future.

There is an interesting paradox of when the world's worst epidemics is raging, there is a drop in attendance at hospitals with most major ones revealing a drop of  80-90 per cent. When asked about what they are doing about emergency treatments like chemotherapy, dialysis, myocardial infraction, heart surgeries, ICU, he said yes there was a drop in numbers perhaps because of difficulty in travelling and added that if there is an issue here, the medical establishments would take care of travel restrictions in case of seriously-ill patients.        

Responding to suggestions from certain quarters that lockdown and restrictions were necesssary only for those who are 55-years or older and those suffering from co-morbidities, he said it is good to keep them safe even after the lockdown and restrictions are lifted. Since some are at risk of infection and some are at risk of seriously geting ill, this group needs to be more careful.

He welcomed the colour zones as scientific and said the system would make efforts to convert red zones to orange and thereafter to green. 

Asked if Bengaluru would suffer unnecesarily because it was a red zone and if microzoning was necessary, Dr Ballal said the containment strategies were a good exercise.

More from Karnataka.

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