Immunity


The numbers don’t lie. Take them with a pinch of salt, but overall mortality  due to COVID19 in India is significantly lower than other large nations like USA. 

Why is that?

I would like to reflect on my own story

I am an Indian born in 1985 in the State of Kuwait. My parents used to take me to India for two months every two years during school vacations. As a result, much of my diet and environmental exposure had been limited to Kuwait. 

In 2003, I completed my schooling, and decided to enroll for a crash course of 30 days in Trivandrum for the Medical and Engineering entrance exams. 

During this period, I took a room in a hostel type setup near the Trivandrum Medical College in Ulloor. I used to eat lunch daily from a local shop there. One week through, I developed severe cramping abdominal pain, diarrhea and was giddy. My mom asked me to return to Kollam (my hometown) where I got admitted to a hospital and was diagnosed with gastroenteritis.

I was on oral and parenteral fluids and antibiotics for a week. I weighed 83 kg when I came to India. In a week I became 68!

Moral of the story

Do not underestimate how many pathogens coexist in India with Indians all throughout their lives. While COVID19 wrecks havoc in most of the world, the immune system of Indians has indeed been prepared for the worst for a very long time. 

The reverse migration of migrant laborers technically should have sparked the largest cascade of human to human COVID19 transmission and it probably did. It probably just encountered more and more robust immune systems and hence the wonderfully low Indian fatality numbers. 

Politicians and the government might take credit for the low numbers, but immunity is not something humans can ’boost’ like they ‘boast’. 

Opinion

Dr Babu View All →

Radiologist l Cyclist l Blogger

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