POST-COVID HEALTH ISSUES
GUWAHATI: Cases of diabetes or uncontrolled blood sugar levels are found increasingly among COVID-19 recovered patients in the State.
Doctors at the Gauhati Medical College & Hospital (GMCH) have advised people to get their blood sugar levels checked after recovering from the COVID-19, irrespective of a history of diabetes.
"I have come across many patients who have found out that they are having diabetes only when being screened for other ailments. These patients might have had diabetes from the past few months or years before contracting COVID-19 but did not know about it," a senior doctor from the Medicine Department at the GMCH said.
The doctor said that one must monitor their blood sugar levels post-COVID regardless of whether they had diabetes previously or not. Such monitoring helps in avoiding various complications that could arise from uncontrolled diabetes. "Apart from severe complications, people might have fatigue, excess urination and body pains if blood sugar levels are not under control," the doctor said.
According to another senior doctor at the GMCH, the mental and physical stress of Covid-19 on the pancreas affects the production of insulin in the body of a patient. "Insulin is crucial in maintaining the sugar levels in the blood of a person, and diabetes results when the pancreas cannot produce enough insulin or stops producing insulin altogether," the doctor said.
Quoting a report of the Journal of Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism, the doctor said that 14.46 per cent of the hospitalized Covid-19 patients across the globe has returned home with diabetes. Most of these patients were perfectly healthy before being infected with coronavirus, and were doing exercise regularly, he said.
"Diabetes as a post-Covid complication was not found in Assam during the first wave of the virus infections. It has emerged as a challenging complication during the ongoing second wave," the doctor said.
GMCH doctors said further research needs analysis if diabetes developed post-Covid will remain permanent or improve with time. But they are closely watching these patients and advising them to eat healthily and exercise while avoiding any mental stress.