Coronavirus | Centre collects data to map COVID-19 after-effects

Doctors flag complications, including induced diabetes, impaired lung function.

Updated - July 15, 2020 07:33 am IST

Published - July 15, 2020 12:15 am IST - NEW DELHI

Policemen keep vigil outside a containment zone in Kolkata on July 14, 2020.

Policemen keep vigil outside a containment zone in Kolkata on July 14, 2020.

Even as the fight against the pandemic continues, data is now being collected from across India on the medical complications that recovered patients are suffering from, including COVID-19-induced diabetes, impaired lung, heart, liver and brain functions along with acute fatigue and dyspnea, after doctors and hospitals indicated this trend.

The Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) is collecting data from leading Central government hospitals, including Safdarjung, Ram Manohar Lohia and AIIMS, and across India.

The Health Ministry said the data would help them come out with guidelines on further care and treatment of those who had recovered.


The Ministry pointed out that 86% of the COVID-19 cases in the country were reported from 10 States, with Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu accounting for 50%; the overall recovery rate had climbed from 47.6% (May 31) to 63.02% currently.

Leading physicians from across the country have indicated that they are seeing some worrying medical complications among the recovered patients.

Cardiologist Dr. Balbir Singh stated that patients were taking a “long time to fully recover and they often complain of feeling lethargic, completely drained out, mentally depressed with the inability to concentrate. In those who developed pneumonia, lung function improves within some months of recovery but some may not normalise due to the fibrosis.’’

Dr. Ambuj Roy from the Department of Cardiology of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi, said that there were possibilities of long-term lung function deterioration and vascular diseases.

Diabetologist Dr. V. Mohan observed that there were indications of COVID-induced diabetes among recovered patients.

There was a move to collect the data on this globally to understand the effect of this relatively new and evolving virus.

The stress on the body associated with this virus could lead to long and short term complications.

Damage to lungs

Dr. Yash Gulati, orthopaedic surgeon at IndraprasthaApollo Hospitals, Delhi, said: “The fact of the matter was that nobody knew for sure the exact after effects of the disease but in the medical community, we are aware the damage is caused by thrombosis in the small vessels that ultimately damages lung tissues and other organs, including the heart, and can lead to fatal pulmonary embolism.”

At a press conference, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Director General Dr. Balram Bhargava said that two indigenous vaccine candidates had undergone successful toxicity studies in rats, mice and rabbits and the data had been shared with the Drug Controller General of India.

“They have now got clearance to start human trials early this month. These candidates have got their sites ready with clinical study on approximately a 1,000 human volunteers now having been initiated,’’ he said.

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