A breathing expert in Belfast said people with untreated asthma, COPD or low immunity had the highest risk of contracting rhinovirus.
The Belfast Trust’s chief respiratory physician, Dr Joe Kidney, has identified those most affected by rhinovirus, which usually develops in humans as the common cold.
It comes after the Health Ministry asked people who had symptoms of rhinovirus to stay home and isolate, even if they tested negative for Covid.
About 12% of the population has had the virus in their noses at any given time, he said, and there is a high probability that it will multiply in cold temperatures. Because of its changing nature, it can be difficult to develop complete immunity to it and it is possible to catch rhinovirus within weeks of recovery.
Speaking on Belfast Live, Dr Kidney said: “I think we all get a cold about six times a year under normal circumstances and our bodies probably forget about that when we lock ourselves up.
Most of them are rhinoviruses and we have about 12% rhinoviruses at all times and they like to multiply at temperatures up to 32 degrees compared to our 37 degrees Celsius. So when it’s cold outside, it recurs in our noses, so we call it cold.
Most of the symptoms are colds, cough, wheezing, sinusitis, they may just feel runny, but often not sick, as the flu is more likely to cause a fever. Although you may still experience pain. Even with rhinovirus.
“The question now is: We’re looking at people who have scurvy and we want to know if they have coronavirus and the answer is if they have it but with a scented nose it might actually be rhinovirus.”
He continued: “People with poorly controlled asthma are a real risk group and these are the people who need preventative treatment, a brown or red inhaler. They feel good between seizures, so they feel the need to take medication while they’re relaxing. Tranquilizers or blue inhalers, and so can get seriously ill with rhinovirus infection, so rhinovirus is likely to be responsible for 80% of asthma attacks, and although it is now rare, asthma deaths do occur.
“What I’ve been saying is that the common cold can be very dangerous for some people.
“Other people who get seriously ill are those with COPD, and exacerbations are the second most common cause of people being hospitalized.”
Dr Kidney warned that Northern Ireland is currently seeing a near peak in coronavirus cases, while Scotland recorded the highest rate last week.
While it claims that advances in treating the virus have been very effective, NI has the lowest death rate of any British country.
He said: “The great thing about the Corona virus is the vaccine, the people who were very sick with the Corona virus are gone and the vaccine was a huge success, it was one of the greatest scientific triumphs of this century. .
“Our biggest achievement has been the vaccine, and it would be infuriating of me not to mention all the drugs developed during the trials, they have changed people in amazing ways.
“We have been running several new treatments being tested at Covid Hospital Belfast Maternity. Many patients have participated and we have tried about 11 medicines, four of which are currently in use, and this has fundamentally changed the way we work.
“It’s been really hard work and this work and the people are amazing. It was great to see that together we could find new treatments and see them in front of our eyes, it was great to do that. That change.”
“My colleagues, especially fellow nurses, have been very successful. We now have different populations, but we don’t have the same wealth as parts of England and yet we have a low mortality rate. If we had British mortality rates, we would have 5,000 deaths instead of 3,000.” But we really shook hands and tried to make sure everyone got the best treatment.”
The doctor issued a final warning about rhinoviruses: “We’ve been taking them for years, and if you’re healthy you’ll catch a cold, but if you’re sensitive you might get sick more.
People with asthma need to take preventative measures, and they can be among the contagious and can catch rhinovirus, and COPD often puts people in the hospital. It is best not to take them if you are at risk. I’m sorry that the elderly care. This cold can be very prevalent for young people.”
I am Ida Scott, a journalist and content author with a passion for uncovering the truth. I have been writing professionally for Today Times Live since 2020 and specialize in political news. My career began when I was just 17; I had already developed a knack for research and an eye for detail which made me stand out from my peers.