The chief physician of the Bolshaya Semya medical center, immunologist-allergologist Ivan Sergeevich Stroilov told BeautyHack why antibiotics do not work on viruses, but they are still prescribed for the flu and why an immunologist is needed for chronic fatigue syndrome.
Viruses are resistant to antibiotics
This is absolutely true. The action of antibiotics is aimed at disrupting the vital processes of bacteria, because of which they cannot divide normally and as a result die. Substances that can also affect the virus without causing serious harm to the patient's health do not exist in nature because viruses cannot divide and they do not have their own internal metabolism. Antibiotics are useless in treating viral infections.
With flu and SARS, the situation is slightly different. In most cases, a viral infection is complicated by the addition of a secondary bacterial infection. And this is where antibiotics may be needed for treatment. How, for example, does ARVI manifest in a child? Sore throat, cough, runny nose, fever. As long as the discharge from the nose is transparent, we are talking only about a viral infection. The appearance of a greenish or yellow tinge of discharge from the nose indicates the addition of a bacterial infection.
Do not take antibiotics at the first sign of a cold - this is unreasonable!
Cold and dampness do not lead to viral infections
Cold and dampness are often cited as the cause of colds. “Put on your hat or you'll get sick” - a familiar phrase? Cold air itself (especially in winter) does not contain viruses - you cannot get sick from it. In addition, in the external environment, most of them are not viable - they die from exposure to ultraviolet radiation and other factors. Viral infections develop only after contact with a sick person. Moreover, not everyone gets sick - it all depends on the state of the immune system.
The main danger of hypothermia is a violation of the immune status and a decrease in the barrier functions of the mucous membranes!
There are no drugs that kill viruses
Medicines that kill viruses have not yet been invented. The essence of widely advertised antiviral drugs boils down mainly to one thing: they modulate the state of the immune system, changing the intensity and quality of the immune response. This is good prevention - nothing more.
Antiviral drugs are divided into groups, among which are: interferons - synthetic analogs of the protein responsible for providing antiviral immunity ("Viferon", "Genferon"), interferon inducers - drugs that stimulate the production of interferons by lymphocytes.
An important nuance: the latter, as a prophylactic agent, are appropriate only when a person has a initially normal immune status.
If the patient has an immunodeficiency state, interferon inducers only aggravate it - it is impossible to stimulate what is already depleted and does not function normally.
It is a pity that in our country antiviral drugs such as "Cycloferon" "Kagocel" are sold without a prescription. Having believed in advertising, people start to accept them on their own, making it worse.
Remember: the people behind the counter in the pharmacy do not have the task of curing you, their function is to sell!
Almost everyone has the herpes virus
On planet Earth, only about 4% of people who are not carriers of herpes group viruses. The likelihood that you are one of them is negligible.
Herpes viruses are divided into 8 types: 1 - herpes simplex, 2 - genital herpes, varicella-zoster virus, Epstein-Barr virus - type 4, cytomegalovirus - herpes type 6. The significance of viruses of 7 and 8 types is not fully known. One of the versions: they are the cause of the sudden appearance of a rash on the body.
In the external environment at room temperature and normal humidity, the herpes simplex virus persists for a day, at a temperature of 50-52 ° C it is inactivated after 30 minutes, and at low temperatures (-70 ° C) the virus is able to remain viable for 5 days.
On metal surfaces (coins, doorknobs, water taps), the virus survives for 2 hours, on wet sterile medical cotton wool and gauze - during the entire drying time (up to 6 hours). And if, for example, you put an unfinished mug of tea on the windowsill, it will quickly die under the influence of ultraviolet radiation - you cannot get infected. Another thing is that all family members quickly establish a single microflora - during the day, the virus will be transmitted to everyone with almost 100% probability.
The virus multiplies, penetrating into a healthy cell and rebuilding the DNA synthesis mechanism in it, turning it into a “factory” for self-reproduction.
For the treatment of herpesvirus infection, drugs of the nucleotide group are used, which disrupt the process of self-reproduction in the infected cell ("Acyclovir", "Valtrex" and others). There are no drugs that can remove the virus from the body.
The virus is one of the possible causes of the development of chronic fatigue syndrome
If a person constantly does not get enough sleep, feels tired and lack of strength, suffers from insomnia, causeless irritability, but all the tests are formally in order - this is a direct indication for contacting an immunologist.
The reason for this condition may be the activation of the Epstein-Barr viral infection. It has been proven that it is often the cause of the development of chronic fatigue syndrome.
It is impossible to completely get rid of the Epstein-Barr virus - a person becomes a carrier for life. The therapy is aimed at suppressing viral replication and correcting the immune system.
Epstein-Barr virus does not cause leukemia
A common myth: the Epstein-Barr virus is the cause of leukemia. It is not true!
Only in people with severe immunodeficiency conditions can the virus cause lymphogranulomatosis, a malignant disease of lymphoid tissue.
Cases of development of lymphogranulomatosis were recorded in HIV-infected patients and patients with viral hepatitis. In people who do not suffer from severe immunodeficiency conditions, the risk of developing such diseases is minimal.
Many people have the Epstein-Barr virus, but this does not mean that there is a risk of developing lymphoma - do not try on data from medical articles on the Internet! See a specialist.