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COMMENTARY: COVID-19 Diary Day 2: Insomnia -- The Mark of Medical Practice  - web md

COMMENTARY: COVID-19 Diary Day 2: Insomnia -- The Mark of Medical Practice

Don Dizon shares how he is dealing with the pandemic, knowing that despite COVID-19, people still need care, chemotherapy needs to be administered, and new patients are still coming in for evaluation.
web md - 14 hours ago
COVID-19 Hitting Some African American Communities Harder  - web md

COVID-19 Hitting Some African American Communities Harder

In states such as Michigan and Louisiana, as well as in cities like Chicago and Milwaukee, African American people are making up a disproportionately large number of COVID-19 cases and deaths, officials say.
web md - 14 hours ago
What’s it like to be a healthcare worker in a pandemic? - harvard

What’s it like to be a healthcare worker in a pandemic?

Millions of healthcare workers on the front lines of the fight against the coronavirus have a much higher risk of becoming infected, and are being put in further danger due to shortages of protective equipment, but they continue to do their jobs while adapting to current conditions. The post What’s it like to be a healthcare worker in a pandemic? appeared first on Harvard Health Blog.
harvard - 15 hours ago
No School Forces Many Medical Workers to Stay Home  - web md

No School Forces Many Medical Workers to Stay Home

About 29% of U.S. health care workers have children between 3 and 12 years of age, the analysis showed. In households without a non-working adult or a sibling age 13 or older to care for them, 15% of health care workers will require child care if schools close.
web md - 2 days ago
Mysterious Heart Damage Hitting COVID-19 Patients  - web md

Mysterious Heart Damage Hitting COVID-19 Patients

Most of the attention in the COVID-19 pandemic has been on how the virus affects the lungs. But evidence shows that up to 1 in 5 infected patients have signs of heart damage and many are dying due to heart problems.
web md - 2 days ago
Patients on Steroids With COVID-19 Might Need Rescue Steroids  - web md

Patients on Steroids With COVID-19 Might Need Rescue Steroids

Those on steroids because of known adrenal disease, and for more common ailments, may need additional 'stress' doses of IV corticosteroids in the case of severe infection with COVID-19, endocrinologists urge.
web md - 2 days ago
Lifestyle changes are important even if you take medications - harvard

Lifestyle changes are important even if you take medications

People who are prescribed medication for high cholesterol or high blood pressure may be more likely to gain weight and less likely to exercise, but for those who are on such medications, it's even more important to commit to making healthier lifestyle choices. The post Lifestyle changes are important even if you take medications appeared first on Harvard Health Blog.
harvard - 2 days ago
Test for Coronavirus Antibodies Approved by FDA  - web md

Test for Coronavirus Antibodies Approved by FDA

The test checks for protective antibodies in a finger prick of blood, revealing whether a patient has ever been exposed to the coronavirus and now may have some immunity, The New York Times reported.
web md - 5 days ago
COMMENTARY: NYU Med Student Joins COVID Fight:

COMMENTARY: NYU Med Student Joins COVID Fight: 'Time to Step Up'

New York med schools asked fourth-year students to graduate early and volunteer to help battle COVID. One student discusses how he weighed the potential life-or-death decision to join the front lines.
web md - 5 days ago
Coronavirus Hangs Around After Symptoms Subside  - web md

Coronavirus Hangs Around After Symptoms Subside

It took about five days from the time patients were infected until symptoms appeared, and about eight days before they disappeared. Patients were contagious for one to eight days, the researchers said in a news release from the American Thoracic Society.
web md - 5 days ago
WalMart Will Check All Workers

WalMart Will Check All Workers' Temperatures

Employees with a temperature of over 100 degrees Fahrenheit will be sent home for at least three days and may be advised to seek medical treatment. The workers will be paid for showing up for work, CBS News reported.
web md - 6 days ago
In Some Cases, COVID-19 May Harm the Brain  - web md

In Some Cases, COVID-19 May Harm the Brain

It's believed the brain can be damaged by viral infection whenever a patient's immune system overreacts to the virus. This immune system hyperactivity triggers a "cytokine storm" -- an overproduction of immune cells and their activating compounds, known as cytokines.
web md - 6 days ago
How does cardiovascular disease increase the risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19? - harvard

How does cardiovascular disease increase the risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19?

Initial investigation into COVID-19 focused on its respiratory effects, but a more recent report describes serious cardiovascular complications in people with pre-existing heart disease. How does this underlying condition increase risk for these people? The post How does cardiovascular disease increase the risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19? appeared first on Harvard Health Blog.
harvard - 6 days ago
Top 10 Must-Dos in ICU in COVID-19 Include Prone Ventilation  - web md

Top 10 Must-Dos in ICU in COVID-19 Include Prone Ventilation

With new European Society of Intensive Care Medicine guidelines on caring for critically ill COVID-19 patients covering more than 50 recommendations, Medscape asked one author for his essential top 10.
web md - 6 days ago
Top 10 Tips for Diabetes Telehealth Prophetic in Face of COVID-19  - web md

Top 10 Tips for Diabetes Telehealth Prophetic in Face of COVID-19

A new article sets the stage for routine virtual diabetes visits, offering 10 top tips that will undoubtedly be of use for transforming care during the COVID-19 pandemic, and likely for long afterwards.
web md - 6 days ago
Abortion Access Shifting in Some States Amid COVID-19  - web md

Abortion Access Shifting in Some States Amid COVID-19

In addition to challenges the coronavirus pandemic already poses to women seeking healthcare, several states have included surgical abortions as restricted procedures in executive orders related to COVID-19.
web md - 6 days ago
Ranitidine (Zantac) recall expanded, many questions remain - harvard

Ranitidine (Zantac) recall expanded, many questions remain

The FDA has not yet released the results of its testing of the heartburn medication ranitidine. The testing method used by the online pharmacy that originally alerted the FDA may have affected their results. The post Ranitidine (Zantac) recall expanded, many questions remain appeared first on Harvard Health Blog.
harvard - 6 days ago
Taking Stock - positively positive

Taking Stock

My intention is to walk this part of my life’s journey with a tremendous amount of compassion for myself and others. To navigate with as much positivity as I can muster, to set the intention to come out the other side knowing myself more, connecting a bit more deeply with the world outside my door even if it is over Zoom, and realizing that when push comes to shove, we sure as hell do know how to come together when faced with a difficult time. The post Taking Stock appeared first on Positively Positive.
positively positive - 6 days ago
FDA Requests Zantac Be Pulled From the Market  - web md

FDA Requests Zantac Be Pulled From the Market

Six months after independent testing first raised the possibility that popular heartburn drug ranitidine (Zantac) might break down into the powerful carcinogen n-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), the FDA has asked for the removal of all ranitidine products from the market.
web md - 1 week ago
EPA Didn’t Tell Residents About Gas Risks: Report  - web md

EPA Didn’t Tell Residents About Gas Risks: Report

A new government report has rebuked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for failing to tell residents about the health risks they face by living near facilities that release cancer-causing ethylene oxide gas.
web md - 1 week ago
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harvard
Coming clean: Your anesthesiologist needs to know about marijuana use before surgery

Coming clean: Your anesthesiologist needs to know about marijuana use before surgery

harvard - 2 months ago

Given the increasing prevalence and legalization of marijuana, many patients have come to think that marijuana use is not worth mentioning to their physicians. After all, they reason, I would not necessarily tell my doctor that I had a glass of wine last night, so why should I disclose that I smoked marijuana yesterday? Unfortunately, this reasoning is flawed. Because marijuana has a variety of effects on the body and on anesthesia medicines, it is crucial that anyone undergoing a preoperative evaluation disclose their marijuana use. Dont worry that your anesthesiologist is judging you. Thats not our job! Our job is to understand your health and body in order to provide you with the safest and most pain-free procedure. This information is part of your confidential medical record, and accurate information is crucial to helping doctors provide good care.

Marijuana can affect the type and amount of anesthesia

The way(s) you use marijuana (smoking, edibles, etc.), how often you use, and how much all can affect how your body responds to anesthesia. Since marijuana and anesthesia both affect the central nervous system, people who use marijuana regularly may need different amounts of anesthesia medicines. In order to know which medicines and how much to use, your doctor needs to know ahead of time how much and how often you use marijuana.

Regular users of marijuana generally need larger doses of anesthesia medicines in order to achieve the same degree of sedation. If you dont tell your anesthesiologist how much marijuana you smoke, he or she may underestimate how much anesthesia will be needed for you to go to sleep and stay asleep during your procedure. For example, compared to nonusers, regular marijuana users (daily to weekly) need over three times as much more propofol to achieve adequate sedation for endoscopies. That is a huge increase in dose that your doctor would want to be prepared to administer.

The higher anesthesia dose required for regular marijuana users can lead to an increased risk of complications, such as decreased blood pressure and delayed awakening from anesthesia.

Marijuana use before surgery can increase the risk of complications

Other side effects of regular marijuana use can lead to serious complications of anesthesia. Inhaled marijuana can affect your lungs and increase phlegm, coughing, wheezing, and the risk of respiratory infections. These lung issues can lead to breathing problems during your anesthetic, such as increased airway sensitivity when the breathing tube is put into or taken out of the airway. This may feel like an asthma attack, with a sensation of difficulty breathing and decreased oxygen getting into the lungs. Regular users of marijuana can also have increased postoperative pain, which leads to higher opioid use during and after surgery. This puts regular marijuana users at risk for opioid use disorder after surgery.

Dont use marijuana the day of surgery especially edibles

No matter how worried you are about your procedure, dont use marijuana to relax you may end up with your surgery rescheduled or with serious complications. Regardless of how often you usually use marijuana, anesthesiologists agree that you should skip it completely on the day of surgery. You should not smoke or inhale marijuana the day of your surgery, and certainly you should avoid any edible marijuana the day of surgery, since the American Society of Anesthesiologists guidelines for preoperative fasting do not allow any solid food for six to eight hours prior to anesthesia, in order to decrease the risk of food getting inhaled into your lungs. This can lead to aspiration pneumonia, a very serious complication that may cause death in some patients.

The physical effects of marijuana can increase the risk of complications, especially if consumed within an hour or two of anesthesia. Marijuana can raise your heart rate and lower your blood pressure. These changes are even more serious in patients with heart disease. In selected patient populations, this combination of decreased blood pressure and increased heart rate can cause ischemia (lack of blood supply) to the heart muscle, commonly known as a heart attack.

There are still many unknowns about marijuana

Your anesthesiologist needs accurate information about your marijuana use in order to plan safe anesthesia, and we know that no one should use marijuana on the day of surgery. Because of marijuanas classification as a drug of abuse, we cannot do medical research on marijuana without legislation to allow that research, and this includes research about how marijuana affects surgical procedures and aspects of anesthesia. The American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) has urged the federal government to allow medical studies and has endorsed bills to expand research in marijuana.

Your anesthesiologist just wants to keep you safe

The ASA has a list of eight things that you should tell your physician and anesthesiologist before surgery, and the use of marijuana is one of them. Please dont be afraid to disclose your use of marijuana to your physician, as it will not affect what we think of you. You will help us manage and adjust your anesthetic, prevent complications, and keep you as safe and healthy as possible.

The post Coming clean: Your anesthesiologist needs to know about marijuana use before surgery appeared first on Harvard Health Blog.

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