diabetes and coronavirusDiabetes and Coronavirus

If you have coronavirus symptoms, however mild:

  • Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. Call us for advice via a telephone appointment
  • If you live alone, stay at home for 7 days from when your symptoms started
  • If you live with someone who has a continuous cough or a high temperature, you should stay at home for 14 days from the day the first person got symptoms. If you then develop symptoms, you should stay at home for 7 days from the day your symptoms start, even if it means you’re at home for longer than 14 days
  • Follow the advice of our doctors or your diabetes team regarding your medication
  • If you routinely check your blood sugar at home you’ll probably need to do it more often
  • If you don’t check your blood sugar levels at home, be aware of the signs of a hyper (hyperglycaemia), which include passing more urine than normal (especially at night), being very thirsty, headaches, tiredness and lethargy. You should contact us if you have hyper symptoms
  • Stay hydrated – have plenty of unsweetened drinks and eat little and often

If you have type 1 diabetes, check your blood sugar at least every four hours, including during the night, and check your ketones. If your blood sugar level is high (generally 15mmol/l or more, or 13mmol/l if you use an insulin pump, but your team may have given you different targets) or if ketones are present, contact your diabetes team.

If you take a certain type of diabetes tablet called SGLT2i and become unwell, you should stop taking these. You need to check your ketones and your blood sugars (if you’ve been told to do this and have the kit), and speak to your healthcare team. The brand names of these tablets are Forxiga, Invokana and Jardiance. Taking these tablets when you’re not very well could increase your risk of developing diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), so you need to know the symptoms to look out for.

Keep eating or drinking – if you can’t keep food down, try snacks or drinks with carbohydrates in to give you energy. Try to sip sugary drinks (such as fruit juice or non-diet cola or lemonade) or suck on glucose tablets or sweets like jelly beans. Letting fizzy drinks go flat may help keep them down. If you’re vomiting, or not able to keep fluids down, get medical help as soon as possible.

How Coronavirus can affect people with diabetes

Coronaviruses can cause more severe symptoms and complications in people with diabetes, as well as in older people and those with other long-term conditions, such as cancer or chronic lung disease.

Everyone with diabetes, including those with type 1, type 2 and gestational, is at risk of developing a severe illness if they get Coronavirus, but the way it affects you can vary from person to person.

When you have diabetes, being ill can make your blood sugar go all over the place. Your body tries to fight the illness by releasing stored glucose (sugar) into your bloodstream to give you energy. But your body can’t produce insulin to cope with this, so your blood sugars rise.

Your body is working overtime to fight the illness, making it harder to manage your diabetes. This means you’re more at risk of having serious blood sugar highs and lows, as well as longer-term problems with your eyes, feet and other areas of your body.

For most people, Coronavirus is a mild illness, but some people develop a more serious form of the virus and could die.
It is important that people with diabetes follow the sick day rules should they become ill from any illness.

Advice from Dr Kaushal and Diabetes UK

high blood pressure and coronavirus

High blood pressure and Coronavirus

Blood pressure is the pressure of blood in your arteries – the vessels that carry your blood from your heart to your brain and the rest of your body. You need a certain amount of pressure to get the blood moving around your body.

Your blood pressure naturally goes up and down throughout the day and night, and it’s normal for it to go up while you’re moving about. It’s when your overall blood pressure is consistently high, even when you are resting, that you need to do something about it.

High blood pressure is serious. If you ignore it, it can lead to heart and circulatory disease, such as a heart attack or stroke. It can also cause kidney failure, heart failure, problems with your sight and vascular dementia.

Symptoms of high blood pressure

High blood pressure rarely has noticeable symptoms. But the following can be symptoms:

  • Blurred vision
  • Nosebleeds
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Headaches

More than 1 in 4 adults in the UK have high blood pressure but many will not know they have it. Many people with high blood pressure feel fine. But even if you feel fine, you should still have your blood pressure checked regularly. If you’re a healthy adult over 40, it’s recommended that you get it checked at least once every five years. But if you’re at increased risk of high blood pressure, you should have it checked more often, ideally once a year.

Please get in touch to get your BP measured, to speak about family history and your risk, arrange tests and appropriate medication. We believe in medications as a last resort and so try hard to avoid starting patients on medication, concentrating on lifestyle changes first. We also try to wean patients off the medications if appropriate measures result in the blood pressure control improving.

High blood pressure medications and Coronavirus

There has been a lot of speculation about blood pressure medications and the increased risk of getting/worsening the effects of Coronavirus. This has led to many discussions and opinions and the advice of our doctor would be that each case is individual and dependant on your other risk factors and current health issues. Contact us if would like to discuss your individual case with our doctor.

We would also like to reassure you there are currently no shortages of heart medications as a result of Coronavirus and many pharmacies offer a home delivery service if you are self-isolating and are unable to have a friend or family member pick up your prescription. Contact us to help you arrange this if needed.


Credit: British Heart Foundation

fair weather warning during coronavirus

Why is the weather not playing ball?

We think the weather is reminding us that in these grim times, there’s a reason to smile and value life & nature. Thank you all so much for staying home. We appreciate how difficult it is not meeting family and friends.

Please enjoy the sun and the vitamin D (safely in your private garden/balconies/through the window)! While we have the warm weather and the sun, please do remember to apply sunblock and keep your skin well-moisturised.

If travelling out for necessities, please remember to keep a 2m distance between yourselves and others.

It is also a good idea when going into an enclosed space like a shop, to wear a mask. This helps protect others and as such if we all wear masks then we protect each other.

If you have any questions about skin conditions or vitamin D deficiencies, please get in touch.

asthma and coronavirus

Asthma and Coronavirus

Asthma is a common lung condition that causes occasional breathing difficulties.

It affects people of all ages and often starts in childhood, although it can also develop for the first time in adults.

There’s currently no cure, but there are simple treatments that can help keep the symptoms under control so it does not have a detrimental impact on your life.

Symptoms of asthma

The main symptoms of asthma are:

  • coughing: especially at night or in the cold (if that is your trigger)
  • a wheeze: whistling sound when breathing
  • breathlessness and/or a tight chest (which may feel like you’re struggling to breathe)

If you develop symptoms of COVID-19 and you have asthma:

  • You need to stay at home until you are no longer contagious to others.
  • You don’t need to contact 111 to tell them you are staying at home.
  • If your COVID-19 symptoms don’t go away after 7 days or get worse, or you are having difficulty breathing, call us for advice, or 999 if you need emergency care.
  • If you get an asthma cough and are not sure whether your cough is a symptom of COVID-19 or related to your asthma, please speak to our doctor

Keep following your asthma action plan (if you have one) to manage your asthma and so you know what to do if your asthma symptoms get worse.

If you are having an asthma attack, call 999 for an ambulance as usual, and tell them you have COVID-19 symptoms. Carry on taking all your usual asthma medicines as normal.

Written with advice from Dr Vibhu Kaushal and asthma.org.uk

Even in the pandemic… ‘Medicine’ still carries on!

With all that is going on, we must not forget the other medical conditions that people suffer from and especially children. We have heard some disturbing reports from colleagues in paediatric emergency departments about parents presenting too late for life-threatening conditions such as asthma (for fear of contracting COVID-19).

While COVID-19 is definitely something to be very aware off and avoided as much as possible, chronic conditions such as asthma, heart disease and diabetes have not become less fatal when poorly managed.

I would strongly encourage parents to get in touch with us if they have any worries about their children’s health. I would also encourage you to seek help early for yourselves and your pre-existing health conditions.

The optimal management of chronic health conditions is one of the goals of the founders of The Mayfair GP. The current pandemic has further cemented our belief in the importance of managing your health.

The age-old advice still applies for emergency conditions such as heart attacks and strokes – you should call 999 if you get any symptoms of these.

We will spend the next few days feeding you more ‘bites’ on these conditions.

Vikas Mehta

Home care tips for looking after someone with Coronavirus.


Home Care Coronavirus Tips

Instructions on how to do your Coronavirus testing by courier sample in advance of it being collected.


Sample Collection Instructions - COVID-19 - courier samples

This graphic explains how Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) testing for Coronavirus works.

Coronavirus Testing

Coronavirus Testing

Apologies for the recent chunky bites, there has been a lot of info to get to you and as always we try to find the most reputable sources with information in most easy-to-digest sizes.

Depending on the information, however, this is not always possible.

Regarding testing (as we get a lot of calls and enquiries about this), there are two tests available in the UK:

  • The ‘swab test’ that is a swab taken from the nose and/or throat
  • The antibody blood test (now one that gives results in 10 mins with a small amount of blood)

They are both used at different points in the illness and therefore it is worth speaking to our doctor to get a better idea of which test you should go for. If done through us, this will also involve a follow-up chat with the results to see what the next steps are.

Please call or email info@TheMayfairGP.com to find out more.

Government guide on how long people should be isolating after showing symptoms and for those they have come into contact.


Coronavirus Guide