Srinagar: Asserting that gastroenterology problems caused by COVID-19 are self limiting, Professor of Medicine, Gastroenterology, Government Medical College Srinagar, Dr Nisar Ahmad Shah said individuals having gastroenterology problems are not at any additional risk of super added infection.
He said Covid is known to cause a variety of gastroenterological problems like dyspepsia, diarrhoea, abdominal pain; oesophageal, gastric and duodenal ulcers, hepatitis and pancreatitis like illness. But, he said, “All these problems are self limiting and need only symptomatic treatment”.
Besides, “Covid is known to cause anxiety symptoms; but it is covid itself and not anxiety which causes gastroenterological symptoms”, Dr Shah clarified on relative effects of covid anxiety and gastro problems.
Dr Shah also clarified misconception regarding the risk to patients suffering from gastroenterological problems and said that those having gastroenterology problems are not at any additional risk of super added infection.
As most of the doctors recommend paracetamol for mild covid relate symptoms, Dr Shah asked for limited intake of paracetamol. He said, “A normal individual can take upto 2 gms ( 4 tablets of 500mg tablets) per day without any problems whereas those having liver problems and severe renal problems need caution”.
However, he cautioned that excessive use of paracetamol can damage the liver and can cause severe gastrointestinal upset in elderly patients, those who indulge in alcohol abuse, people with borderline kidney function and liver disease and fasting aggravates paracetamol poisoning.
He also said steroids can cause a lot of side effects and advised that steroids should never be taken of your own. He cautioned that steroids involve almost every system of our body hence have multi systemic effects and side effects.
In the Gastro-Intestinal system, “steroids are known to cause gastric and duodenal ulcers especially if taken along with pain killers”, Dr Shah said regarding the side effects of steroids taken by some people during covid infection.
Moreover, he recommended early Covid vaccination and extra precautions for those patients who have gastroenterological conditions requiring immunosuppressive treatment for ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, autoimmune hepatitis etc.
While insisting on Vaccination, Dr Shah said that Vaccination is the only shield and weapon against Covid-19 infection and appealed to people to get vaccinated without any fear.