SECONDARY INFECTIONS ASSOCIATED WITH STEROID USE IN COVID 19 PATIENTS
Nazish Fathima, Soniya M., Tani Elsa Thomas and *Teena Elsa Tigi
COVID-19 is an acute respiratory syndrome produced by SARS-CoV-2. It is transmitted through droplets from infected individuals while talking, coughing or sneezing. Patients who are affected with coronavirus usually present with symptoms like fever, cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, muscle aches, headache, loss of smell or taste, sore throat, congestion, nausea/vomiting and diarrhoea. It is diagnosed using RT-PCR and serology testing. COVID-19 patients are associated with the risk of developing secondary bacterial and fungal infections such as mucormycosis and aspergillosis. Uncontrolled diabetes, immunocompromised conditions or use of steroids are the risk factors of secondary infections. Dexamethasone used at an early stage can change the pulmonary and systemic inflammatory response and thereby reduces mortality. But the overuse of steroid may suppress the immunity and leads to secondary infections and hence should be carefully administered. Infection controlling practices such as removing gloves after taking care of a patient, avoiding hand rubs over gloves and adherence to device care bundles are the ways to prevent secondary infections in COVID-19 patients.
Keywords: COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, mucormycosis, aspergillosis.
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