Prof. Kozak: 80 percent people suffering from influenza do not have a fever
About 80 percent people suffering from influenza do not have a fever anymore, says Prof. Wiesław Kozak from the Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń, who has been studying fever for several decades. He adds that by stopping the elevated temperature, we significantly extend the time of serious virus infection.
"Fever now does not affect about 80 percent of people suffering from influenza. This applies especially to older patients, because in children up to 10 years of age it is (...) observed and high. If we block it, we allow the virus to develop in our cells and the infection spreads" - notes the expert.
In his opinion, blocking fever and taking aspirin-like drugs with viral infections is pointless.
"This is an irrational action on our part. Of course we block all the elements of the acute phase - muscle pain, decreased libido, but the infection goes on, spreads. Without blocking the synthesis of virus particles caused by high temperature, infection will continue to develop in our cells" - adds the scientist.
According to Prof. Kozak, in the case of influenza we should accept fever as an ally in recovery.
"It is our own response to a viral infection. That is the case with many other viruses, such as smallpox. This virus also causes fever, but patients obviously try to get it down and as a result the infection persists, it lasts much longer than if we did not try to get rid of the fever" - the scientist says.
The expert reminds that prolonged infection caused by influenza can have very serious consequences - including autoimmune kidney disease or weakened myocardium.
"When we block the fever, the virus reproduces without control, without the first reaction to the development of infection. It is always better to suffer through the fever - stay in bed, sweat it out, than to react pharmacologically" - says Prof. Kozak.
In his opinion, people in Poland definitely overuse antipyretics and painkillers. By doing that, they do not improve their health, they degrade it instead.
PAP - Science in Poland
author: Tomasz Więcławski
twi/ gma/ kap/