Awareness urged to differentiate between Covid-19, allergy

KABUL (Pajhwok): Some residents have stressed increasing public awareness about coronavirus as allergy-related health issues surge with changes in weather and it has similarities with coronavirus symptoms.

Is this Covid-19 or allergy: a resident

Fatima, a resident of Dasht-i-Barchi area, told Pajhwok Afghan News since becoming adult she gets allergic to weather changes.

“My eyes and nose get wet due to flu, cold and other issues, it bothers me a lot, but since Covid-19 spread, my pain has doubled, I don’t know it is allergy or Covid-19.”

Benafsha, a resident of Ferozkoh City in Ghor province, said: “In the beginning of spring season I was sneezing, my eyes turned red and my entire body was in pain. I was worried to be infected with Covid-19. I went to the hospital and tested myself but it was negative.”

She stressed there was need for greater awareness regarding Covid-19 so that individuals struggling with allergy would be able to recognize Covid-19 and allergy symptoms and differentiate between the two.

Habibullah, 18, from the Kohoshal Khan area of Kabul, also complained against weather-related allergy problems and said in the spring and summer seasons his health condition worsened.

Medical experts

Dr. Ahmad ShakaibRasikh, Antani and Tabalcrusise Department Head at Kabul University, said Covid-19 and allergy are two different health problems with almost similar symptoms.

Dr. Ahmad Shakib Rasikh, a professor in the Department of Infectious Diseases and Tuberculosis at Kabul Medical University, told Pajhwok Afghan News that Covid-19 and seasonal allergies were two diseases that have almost the same symptoms in some cases but are completely separate diseases.

He said: “Coronavirus is an infectious disease. The causative agent of this disease is a type of virus that is a living body and allergy is not caused by this living body. There are external factors that are medically called allergens, these two diseases are completely different, but have some clinical manifestations that are misunderstood.”

The professor said allergy symptoms could often be misunderstood sometimes and assumed as Covid-19 symptoms.

“But in Covid-19 sneezing is very rare, the patient has symptoms of severe sore throat, high fever, severe muscle pain, which is the most important distinguishing factor between these two diseases, high fever, which is very high body temperature.”

He continued: Covid-19 is a virus and the patient has a high fever. It is said that 90% of people with Covid-19 disease have a high fever while allergy doesn’t have these symptoms

Allergy is more common in spring when the flowers and plants turn green and these plants and flowers release a substance called pollen, and people who are allergic should not encounter these flowers and plants so that their allergies do not intensify, said Dr. Rasikh.

Pajhwok tried to get the view of the Public Health Ministry but no response was received from them.


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