COVID-19 pandemic: Diabetes patients need to take special preventive care

ST CORRESPONDENT
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Those suffering from diabetes are at a higher risk if they test positive for Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), which is why doctors have expressly suggested ways to maintain blood sugar levels.

Pune: Those suffering from diabetes are at a higher risk if they test positive for coronavirus disease (COVID-19), which is why doctors have expressly suggested ways to maintain blood sugar levels.

Dr Rahul Dhope, Diabetologist, Jupiter Hospital said that COVID-19 could cause more severe symptoms and complications in people living with diabetes. Hence more precautionary measures are needed.

“People who have diabetes-related health problems are likely to have worse outcomes than people with diabetes who are otherwise healthy. Since COVID-19 is so new, there is not yet a vaccine, nor are there proven effective medications to treat it, so preventing contracting the disease is the most important measure,” said Dr Dhope.

He added that patients should take all precautions like personal hygiene, social distancing, etc.

“Follow the advice of your diabetes care team regarding medication usage and keep sugar level under control, not too low or too high. If you routinely check your blood glucose at home, you’ll probably need to do it more often. You should contact your doctor if you have low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) or high blood sugar symptoms or readings. Try to have more online consultations to minimise the risk of getting the infection. Keep your healthcare records handy when you consult a doctor and have sufficient supply of medications and testing strips,” Dr Dhope further added.

Dr Girish Parmar, a senior diabetologist and endocrinologist at Nanavati Super Speciality Hospital, shared similar views. He said that diabetic patients should take all necessary precautions as advised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and strictly adhere to the guidelines put forth by the Public Health Department.

“Diabetic patients should follow a strict diet and exercise to keep the blood sugar levels in control and strengthen their immunity. They can consult with their treating doctor to alter any drugs if required,” said Dr Parmar.

Special care

  • Follow dietary measures strictly
  • Exercise regularly
  • Consult the doctor through online means
  • Keep a sufficient supply of testing strips and medicines
  • Maintain hygiene and social distancing

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