Mothers have been advised against giving drugs such as aspirin to their babies when they fall sick as doing so could lead to severe complications.
Ruth Kamau a pediatrician at Tigoni hospital in Limuru Sub County warned that giving a baby aspirin to treat infections such as chicken pox and flu increased their risk of contracting Reyes syndrome which causes liver and brain damage.
“Reye’s syndrome causes permanent brain damage that leads to confusion or mental disorders to the baby if untreated,” She stressed while speaking to KNA at the hospital yesterday.
The pediatrician explained that the syndrome causes the brain to swell as fat accumulates in the liver damaging it. “Prolonged use of aspirin to children under 2 years also leads to internal bleeding, yellowing of the eyes and may trigger asthmatic attacks, thereby causing breathing problems,” she further cautioned.
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Ms Kamau also cautioned that babies aged between 4 to 7 years should not be given aspirin as it weakens their developing immune system
She noted that symptoms such as diarrhea, restlessness, drowsiness and irregular breathing often appeared when the baby was recovering from the infection after being treated.
Noting that prevention was better than cure, Kamau advised mothers to always present their ailing babies to qualified medical personnel.