The Russian airline announced that from now on, those who have medical contraindications for wearing masks are not allowed on board. Thus, the carrier decided to completely protect its passengers from “maskless”, whatever the reason they may call it. We found out from the doctors what diseases masks cannot be worn with and how to solve this problem.
Airplanes may be considered the safest place in terms of coronavirus these days. The stewardesses strictly monitor that the mask is in the right place for each passenger, even lowering it just below the nose “will not give a ride”, the vigilant flight attendant will notice this and make a remark. And now the airline has introduced a new rule: “Passengers who cannot wear a mask for medical reasons or for other reasons … cannot be allowed to fly,” their official statement on December 14 said.
We asked the assistant of the Department of Allergology and Immunology of the FSBEI DPO RMANPO of the Ministry of Health of Russia Marina Peredelskaya, under what diseases a person cannot wear a mask.
– There are relative contraindications for wearing masks. In this pandemic, we faced such a problem as contact dermatitis in people on the face after wearing a mask. If the mask is on the face for a long time, skin irritation may occur.
When a patient contacts us with this problem, we recommend that he refrain from wearing this particular type of mask, or change it more often. Indeed, after two hours of wearing the same mask, due to its excessive moisture, there is a rapid growth and development of microorganisms.
But all this is relative contraindications, because the risk-benefit ratio of the mask is controversial, which is better, to get infected with coronavirus or get contact dermatitis? We prescribe therapy to such a patient and recommend changing, for example, a medical mask for a medical respirator, which has a different degree of touch on the face.
Much more serious mask wearing difficulties can occur in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which causes shortness of breath. But these should be patients with extremely severe COPD who require oxygen support on an ongoing basis and who carry oxygen cans with them. For such people, a medical mask is an additional mechanical complication of the act of breathing. On the other hand, patients with COPD are at a special risk group, and if they become infected with coronavirus, they will definitely develop a difficult clinic.
– Maybe it’s better for such patients not to fly at all now?
– Why, maybe, such a person really needs a flight. There are different degrees of COPD, patients with mild and moderate degrees are quite intact people, they move around, they take care of themselves. But here, too, the question arises, which is better, to put on a mask and try to breathe through it or not to wear it, get infected and almost certainly die from COVID-19? If a patient comes to me and says, give me a certificate that I cannot wear a mask, I will not give such a certificate as a doctor. I will give recommendations on how to live with a mask, we will try to find a solution to his problem.
Cardiologists also warn that in people who suffer from heart failure, chronic severe bronchitis, asthma, wearing a mask can make breathing difficult. This will lead to a decrease in the level of oxygen in the blood, and, accordingly, worsen the oxygen supply to all organs and tissues.
Well, as for children, they are not forced to wear masks on airplanes, because Rospotrebnadzor indicates in its rules that “putting on a mask on a small child is not easy, therefore, for children under 7 years old, the main recommendation is to maintain social distance”. But older children, adolescents, as you know, must be in PPE. But, as doctors say, masks are contraindicated for children of any age if they have breathing problems, chronic diseases of the upper and lower respiratory tract and congenital malformations of the cardiovascular system.