Emergency cases during the first 10 days of the ongoing holy month of Ramadan decreased compared to the same period last year, according to Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) data.
HMC records show the number of patients who approached the Emergency Department at the Hamad General Hospital (HGH) this Ramadan averaged about 971 per day compared to 1,045 during the first 10 days of Ramadan in 2018.
The total number of emergency cases for the same period in 2018 was 10,456 while this year it is 9,718.
HMC data of emergency cases for the first ten of Ramadan for 2019 and 2018.
HMC has issued awareness circulars and guidelines as well as information about precautionary measures, to be followed by various groups of people, for fasting during Ramadan.
The data highlights that the awareness initiatives have been helping people to follow the right practices for fasting.
The most common cases during Ramadan are gastric issues, renal colic and heat exhaustion with dehydration, according to Dr Yousef al-Tayeb, a consultant in Emergency Medicine at HGH.
“The most common cases increase by about 15 to 20% during Ramadan. Patients with different chronic diseases and their families have been already advised what they should do in case of emergencies during Ramadan,” explained Dr al-Tayeb.
“Our main advice to those who are fasting is to avoid fatty food as much as they can. We encourage everyone to have enough fruits and vegetables which will facilitate digestion. We also recommend to avoid excessive consumption of coffee and tea as they contain caffeine which can cause dehydration through excessive urination, leading to loss of fluids,” noted Dr al-Tayeb.
According to the consultant, those who are fasting should avoid exposure to sun. “People should avoid getting exposed to sun, especially from 10am to 4pm. They should also try to get away from hot areas that can cause excessive sweating and thereby leading to loss of fluids. We also encourage everyone to drink enough water, between Iftar and Suhoor - maybe two to three litres of water. People with cardiac and renal diseases have to get additional advice from their physicians,” he said.
The physician also added that patients with chronic diseases who are fasting have to take their regular medicine at the time of Iftar and Suhoor.
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