According to Boston News, in early December 2011, a carpenter accidentally discharged a nail gun and embedded a 3.5 inch nail in the bottom of his neck. Based on the CT scan included here, it appears the nail entered the neck dead center given the clear appearance of the windpipe.
Based on the location, the anatomic sequence of nail piercing is as follows:
Skin –> Thyroid Gland –> Trachea –> Esophagus Back Wall –> Cervical Vertebral Body
The damage to skin, thyroid, and trachea is not a big deal… In fact, one can consider this a mini-tracheostomy. Minimal bleeding would be expected.
However, the hole between the trachea and esophagus is another matter which may heal well… or not. The esophagus Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Fauquier ENT Blog*
Partners Health Care (the dominant provider network in Greater Boston) and Neighborhood Health Plan (a local mostly-Medicaid HMO) just announced that the former intends to acquire the latter, and maintain it as a separate operating entity. No money will change hands between the parties, but an unspecified amount of money will be given by Partners as grants to community health centers where NHP members receive much of their health care services. Gary Gottlieb, CEO of Partners, graciously allowed that it would not seek to interfere with the current referral patterns of NHP members to the two local safety-net hospitals (which get disproportionate share hospital payments; Partners hospitals do not).
The deal is contingent on several layers of regulatory review, including Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at HealthBlawg :: David Harlow's Health Care Law Blog*
A report released recently by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Trust for America’s Health issued some grim warnings about the current and future state of the U.S.’s obesity epidemic.
Bluntly titled “F is for fat: How obesity threatens America’s future 2011,” the report found that obesity rates rose in 16 states since 2010 and that more than 30% of people are obese in 12 states, compared with one state just four years ago. The South is still the worst-faring region—nine out of 10 states with the highest obesity rates are located there.
The report compared today’s data with data from 20 years ago, when no state’s obesity rate exceeded 15%. Now, only one state—Colorado—has a rate below 20%. The report also points out that despite the increased attention paid to obesity by government (not to mention the media), no states posted a decrease in rates over the past year. Diabetes and hypertension rates have also risen sharply over the past two decades, the report said.
Recommendations to address the problem include preserving and in some cases restoring federal funding for obesity prevention and implementing legislation to improve nutrition in schools, among others.
Meanwhile, two researchers are making headlines for proposing a more extreme solution: Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at ACP Internist*
Researchers at Children’s Hospital in Boston and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have developed an iPhone application that keeps you up-to-date with drug safety reports and allows you to submit any side effects directly to the FDA.
The app, called MedWatcher can keep a list of medications for which you receive both official FDA alerts and news from other channels. Users can report side effects straight from the app and view other submitted reports. The researchers hope to lower the barrier to reporting side effects, increasing the participation in safety surveillance.
Reports of serious adverse events are reviewed by members of the Children’s Computational Epidemiology Group and then submitted to the FDA. The app was developed using technology from the Outbreaks Near Me app, which we covered one year ago. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Medgadget*
If a website touted misleading healthcare information, you’d hope the government would do something about it. But what do you do when the government is the one feeding the public bad information?
Last week the Obama administration launched the new Healthcare.gov. It’s mostly an online insurance shopping website. It’s very much a federal government version of sites like eHealthInsurance.com or Massachsetts’ HealthConnector site, which have been around for years.
So when HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, in announcing the new site, claims it gives consumers “unprecedented transparency” into the healthcare marketplace, you should wonder what she means. But that’s not the big problem with this site. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at See First Blog*