Self-medication can be dangerous, say doctors

A fever does not necessarily mean that the person has been infected by COVID-19 or dengue, doctors said, warning the public against the perils of self-medication.

“Self-medication is very dangerous. Taking medicines under the assumption that any fever might be one of these two may sometimes result in a threat to one’s life,” warned Dr. M.V.V. Gandhi, a specialist in general medicine.

Dr. Gandhi was speaking at a conference on ‘COVID-19: third wave and seasonal diseases’, organised jointly by the Praja Arogya Vedika (PAV), Praja Parirakshana Committee (PPC) and the Indian Medical Association (IMA), at the Public Library here on Wednesday evening.

Dr. Gandhi said that the use of medicines without consulting a doctor and without getting the requisite tests done could endanger the lives of patients. Common cold, dry cough, body pains, and headache were symptoms of COVID-19 and in some patients vomiting and diarrhea could also occur. The rains have brought seasonal changes and the stagnation of water has led to the proliferation of houseflies and mosquitoes, which causes a number of diseases like malaria, dengue and diarrhoea. He called upon the public to visit a doctor, when they turn sick and get the tests done to confirm the disease.

Dr. P. Janaki Ram said that there were several apprehensions among the public on the third wave and many wild rumours surrounding the pandemic were being spread on social media. He appealed to the people to be vigilant and take adequate precautions but not be carried away by rumours.

Dr. Y.L.N. Rao, Professor of Gynaecology, called for greater awareness among the people.

PAV State general secretary T. Kameswara Rao said that a team from PAV visited the Agency areas recently to study the health conditions and found an acute shortage of doctors and health workers at government hospitals there. He appealed to the State government to fill the vacancies immediately in view of the precarious health situation.

The non-availability of safe drinking water in the tribal areas was another reason for the proliferation of diarrhoea and other diseases, he said.

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