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Chances of reinfection high if covid-19 antibodies start reducing within 5 months: ICMR

Published on:21 October 2020, 18:07pm IST
The worst is not over, even if you have been struck down by covid-19. The road to recovery brings along with it chances of reinfection.
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Yes people, covid-19 reinfection is a possibility . Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Covid-19 has left most of us in a precarious state. While we all fear contracting the disease in the first place, the saga completely changes when we do get infected. After recovery, many of us forgo precautions—because that’s what antibodies are for!

However, here is an update from the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) that will make most of us rethink this attitude.

According to the director-general of ICMR, Dr Balram Bhargava, there is a possibility of re-infection, if antibodies reduce in the body of a covid-19 recovered person in five months time. Shocked? But it is absolutely true.

Here’s more what the ICMR official has to say

The ICMR DG remarks were made at a Union Health Ministry briefing today, in which he urged people to continue to wear masks and follow coronavirus appropriate behaviour to curb the spread of covid-19 in the country.

Also, listen:

“After any infection, antibodies develop in the body. In the case of coronavirus, it has been seen that the antibodies last for at least five months. The covid-19 virus is still evolving and we are learning more about it. If antibodies decrease in the body of a person within five months, then there is a possibility of reinfection and a person may become re-infected with covid-19. Hence, it is important to take precautions like wearing a mask, even after someone gets the disease once,” Bhargava said.

The main symptoms of coronavirus infection are fever, cough, and breathlessness, the ICMR official explained.

Trials for covid-19 treatment are also underway

Commenting on the World Health Organisation (WHO) Solidarity Trial, the ICMR chief said: “WHO solidarity trial is a 30-country trial in which India has been a participant and interim results of this have been put on the website, which has not yet been peer-reviewed. However, we find that these drugs (Remdesivir and HCQ) are not performing as good as it was expected.

Discussions are being done at the joint monitoring group and national task force of covid-19. We will take into cognizance the trial results and issue advisories accordingly,” he said.

The trial was conducted from March 22 to October 4 and aimed to study the effects of these treatments on overall mortality, initiation of ventilation, and duration of hospital stay in hospitalized patients.

covid-19 re-infection
Don’t underestimate covid-19 as it can re-infect you. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Previously, the trial arms for hydroxychloroquine and lopinavir were discontinued as primarily results had shown no benefit

The Solidarity Trial is the world’s largest global randomized controlled trial in a pandemic situation for the covid-19 therapeutics, spanning 30 countries. India contributed one-tenth of the participants in the trial, said ICMR.

We have seen the government taking every possible step to ensure that people abide by the safety measures. But unfortunately, it is observed that most of the citizens are flouting big time.

Yesterday too Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged everyone to be vigilant, till the time a vaccine is not deployed. So please wear a mask whenever you step out and wash your hands frequently. 

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