Amid the continuous rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in India, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has revised guidelines for the management of coronavirus patients. The new guidelines have been shared days after the task force chief expressed regret over the use of steroids during the second wave of COVID-19. According to revised guidelines, the patient should get tested for tuberculosis and other conditions if the cough persists for more than two-three weeks. It also asked doctors not to prescribe steroids to patients of COVID-19.
In the revised clinical guidelines, the health ministry said that steroids should not be used for the treatment as it increases the risk of secondary infections, such as black fungus. The guidelines strictly ask for avoiding it.
AIIMS/ICMR-COVID-19 National Task Force/ Joint Monitoring Group (Dte.GHS), @MoHFW_INDIA issues Clinical Guidance for Management of Adult COVID-19 Patients revised on 14/01/2022. It is accessible at https://t.co/yvgOGSwOFK@PIB_India @mygovindia #CoronaUpdatesInIndia pic.twitter.com/Wj97STgH7H
— ICMR (@ICMRDELHI) January 17, 2022
“Anti-inflammatory or immunomodulatory therapy (such as steroids) can have the risk of secondary infection such as invasive mucormycosis when used too early, at a higher dose, or for longer than required,” it said while warning against the use of steroids.
The Covid National Task Force of the health ministry also emphasized that there is no evidence to prove the benefits of injectable steroids among those patients of COVID-19 who do not require oxygen supplementation.
The guidelines have been drafted by experts from the AIIMS, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) – Covid19 Task Force, and the Directorate General of Health Services. The guidelines maintained that antiparasitic Ivermectin and antibiotics like doxycycline and azithromycin should not be used for mild cases. It stated that mild cases of COVID-19 must be managed at home in isolation.
However, it is very important to seek immediate medical attention, even in mild cases, if there is difficulty in breathing or the patient’s oxygen saturation drops below 93. The revised guidelines has categorised upper respiratory tract symptoms without shortness of breath as a mild disease.