Influenza virus H3N2

Influenza virus H3N2 spreads like Covid: ex-AIIMS chief

Health Health

Dr. Randeep Guleria, a former director of AIIMS-Delhi, remarked on the increase in influenza cases brought on by the H3N2 virus and noted that it mutates every year around this time, spreading through droplets. With the holiday season quickly approaching, the chairman of the Institute of Internal Medicine and Respiratory and Sleep Medicine as well as the director of medical education advised people to exercise caution, especially the elderly and those who have underlying comorbid diseases.

Symptoms and Prevention

According to Dr. Randeep Guleria, influenza cases manifest as fever, sore throat, cough, bodily aches, and runny nose. He noted that the virus evolved and people’s protection to it weakened, leading to an increase in instances.

Dr. Guleria added that the virus undergoes a small alteration each year. According to him, the H3N2 virus belongs to a group of influenza viruses that can evolve depending on the subtype it belongs to. According to him, the virus undergoes annual antigenic drift, or small mutations.

While the increase in instances has not been significantly followed by an increase in hospitalisation, the former AIIMS chief said he does not believe there is a significant reason for concern.

Influenza virus H3N2

The increase in instances, according to Dr. Randeep Guleria, can be related to two factors: people not wearing masks in crowded places after Covid and the increased likelihood of contracting influenza when the weather changes around this time of year.

Dr. Randeep Guleria advised wearing masks in crowded settings to guard against contracting the infection. Together with frequent hand washing, people should maintain physical distance. There is also a vaccine available, according to Dr. Randeep Guleria, for elderly people and high-risk populations.

Holi celebrations are OK, but individuals should exercise caution, “particularly the elderly and those who have underlying comorbid disorders such chronic respiratory ailments, heart difficulties, kidney problems, or are receiving dialysis,” he said.