Chicken pox can be fatal in one-year-olds or younger babies and that their parents need to be particularly careful, Pakistan Medical Society chairman Dr Masood Akhtar Sheikh said on Tuesday.
He said chicken pox was on the rise in the city due to the ongoing spell of humid and hot weather.
He said chickenpox could occur only once in a person’s lifetime.
He said its symptoms included high fever, headache, pain in the joints and muscles and lethargy. He said the incubation period of the virus was between 10 and 21 days.
He said antibiotics should be avoided unless they were absolutely necessary. “Antibiotics are needed if brain damage is indicated or if the patient is suffering pneumonia,” the doctor said.
He said a vaccine for chickenpox prevention was now available in the country.
However, he said, it was quite costly and not everyone could afford it. “One shot of the vaccine may cost up to Rs1,500.
People belonging to the lower and lower-middle classes cannot afford to buy these vaccines from the market,” he added.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 10th, 2011.