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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 34  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 8-14

Nebulization in the pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019

1 Department of Tuberculosis and Respiratory Diseases, GSVM Medical College, Kanpur, India
2 Department of Tuberculosis and Respiratory Diseases, GSVM Medical College; Consultant, Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Apollo Spectra Hospital, Kanpur, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Subodh K Katiyar
112/370, Swaroop Nagar, Kanpur - 208 002, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijaai.ijaai_29_20

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Inhaled therapy is the cornerstone in the management of obstructive airway diseases (OADs). Nebulization is often used for the delivery of bronchodilators and corticosteroids among the elderly and children. The present pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by a newly identified, highly contagious, novel coronavirus, called severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), is responsible for great morbidity and mortality globally. There is a great concern regarding person-to-person transmissibility of this virus. There is also a great concern of viral transmission of this virus to the health-care personnel and the bystanders through aerosol-generating procedures including frequently used nebulization therapy. Most of the patients with OAD, during the current pandemic, who were undergoing nebulization therapy, on getting infected with SARS-CoV-2 or on its suspicion, have been shifted to other handheld devices out of fear of transmission of infection. Presently, there exist not enough evidences either on the safety or on the risk of transmissibility of SARS-CoV-2 during nebulization in COVID-19 patients. In addition, there are concerns about nebulization in OAD cases even in the absence of COVID-19 and about the use of inhaled or systemic corticosteroids in these cases. We have made some observations based on all the current information available related to these issues, which may help provide some guidance in the use of nebulizer therapy and also discussed the measures to be taken to minimize the risk of infection, if any, during the procedure.

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