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Combined virus threat affects Turkish population



Influenza (flu) A, Influenza B, COVID-19 and Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infection (RSV) cases are increasing intensely. To determine the nature of the virus, a domestically produced detection kit will be launched soon and will be used at the relevant hospitals.

“I have appointed our Presidency of Health Institutes of Türkiye. A local multi-pathogen test kit will be produced in our country by evaluating domestic opportunities and it will be used widely in a very short time,” Health Minister Fahrettin Koca speaking to reporters after a Cabinet meeting on Monday.

Speaking to Sabah newspaper, Child Health and Allergic Diseases Specialist professor Dr. Bülent Enis Şekerel stated that there has been a serious increase in cases of flu, colds, COVID -19 and RSV.

Şekerel said that immunity to viruses has decreased in the pandemic and that with the opening of schools, children suddenly get the microbe that they usually are infected with over time. Şekerel said, “The number of pediatric patients is quite high. There is a serious increase in the number of hospital admissions. There is an increase in other virus infections, especially RSV. Viruses such as colds and flu change shape and cause pandemics.”

Be careful with symptoms

Şekerel explained that high fever, headache, muscle pain, a sore throat, bad cough, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, runny nose and mild cough are seen in colds, while RSV, which causes respiratory tract infections, occurs with complaints similar to flu and colds. “There weren’t many cases until now because there was no socialization. But after an ease in the restriction after COVID-19 numbers are quite high, and it is more effective in infants. The disease does not cause permanent damage,” he said.

Drawing attention to the importance of a balanced diet to strengthen children’s immunity, Şekerel advised, “Children should drink fresh fruit juices and herbal teas. They should consume plenty of fluids. The infected children should stay at home and must not go to school,” he emphasized.


On the other hand, Child Chest Diseases Specialist professor Dr. Elif Dağlı speaking to Demirören News Agency (DHA) said that this year, due to triple or even quadruple virus infections, respiratory tract infections, which manifest themselves with more severe findings, are seen in children. Dağlı said, Influenza A, which is commonly known as swine flu among, is very common in Türkiye, besides, the virus that causes respiratory tract infection called bronchiolitis is encountered very frequently, and that COVID-19 is expected to rise in December, so the triple viral infections are at the door. Pointing out that influenza A is much more common than it was in 2009 when it was first seen in our country, Dağlı said, “The hospital beds in the U.S. are completely full. Children’s beds are 30% of them. When we look at the reason, it is seen that COVID-19, though it has not spread much yet, there are estimates that it will rise in December.”

Pointing out that RSV has the ability to “collaborate” with Influenza A and cause more severe lung infections, Dağlı said, “RSV normally causes bronchiolitis. It is a picture with wheezing resembling an asthma attack, giving signs of fever and fatigue. On the other hand, Influenza A is currently an epidemic in our country. We see at least a few cases per day. Scientists have shown this with a study. Influenza A enters the cell more easily by using the upper sheath of RSV. Since the immune system recognizes Influenza, it does not take it inside, but the virus achieves this by using RSV.

“The biggest concern of scientists is that if this association continues, this virus may start to become a different virus. A third virus may emerge, which may become more dangerous than before and cause pandemics that may continue for a longer period of time,” she warned.

Mentioning that if this situation is not brought under control now, much more difficult days may arise when winter comes. “We are afraid that if we do not take this under control right now, we may also experience double-triple pandemics,” urged Dr. Dağlı.

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Source: Daily Sabah

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