High blood sugars come in three different tiers for me: No Big Deal (NBD), Tricky Little Sucker (TLS), and What The Eff (WTE).
No Big Deal (NBD) highs are the ones I see when I first hear the Dexcom BEEEEEEEP!ing. They are the 180 – 240 mg/dL highs, where I’m cruising out of range, but not so far outside that it takes hours to correct. The NBD highs are usually mild in their symptoms (kind of thirsty, sort of tired, maybe wouldn’t have noticed if the Dex hadn’t hollered) are thankfully short in their duration, so long as I’m on the ball about keeping tabs on my blood sugars.
Tricky Little Sucker (TLS) highs are obnoxious pieces of garbage that hang on for hours. These highs are the ones where you hit anything over 200 mg/dL and just ride there for hours. HOURS. Like you can undecorate the Christmas tree and pack up all the holiday nonsense back into the attic and STILL find yourself rolling outside the threshold. They’re the ones that Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Six Until Me.*
Talking About Side Effects With Your Health Care Team
Side effects may occur with any new treatment, including new medications, placement of a new medical device, surgery, or even physical or occupational therapy. We usually think of side effects when we begin to experience bad changes —when the treatment introduces new worrisome symptoms or problems. Most treatments have some sort of side effect associated with them, and many of us may wonder if side effects are simply the price we must pay for a necessary treatment.
But side effects shouldn’t be taken lightly, for a number of reasons. At their most extreme, side effects raise the alarm when you are having harmful and even potentially fatal treatment reactions. Even somewhat mild side effects like a dry mouth, sleepiness, or minor muscle aches may still interfere with your daily life. Sometimes side effects bother some people so much that they skip doses or give up a treatment altogether, which can derail care and put them at risk for both short- and long-term complications.
Before treatment begins, here are a few questions you can discuss with your health care team: Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Prepared Patient Forum: What It Takes Blog*
Getting a flu vaccine is on many “to do” lists in the fall, but for those who still haven’t checked it off their list, it’s not too late to get vaccinated. Many people don’t realize that flu activity usually peaks in the United States in January or February, and flu viruses can circulate as late as May. As long as there’s flu around, it isn’t too late to get vaccinated.
Getting a yearly flu vaccine is the first and most important step in protecting against the flu, and CDC recommends influenza vaccination for everyone age 6 months and older. We urge you and all health care professionals to get vaccinated yourselves and offer flu vaccine at every opportunity to every patient—except infants younger than 6 months and the very few people for whom flu vaccination is contraindicated.
Studies show that your recommendation makes the difference in your patients’ decision to get a flu vaccine. You should continue to emphasize the importance of flu vaccination for your patients. And, if you don’t already do so, consider offering flu vaccines to patients in your own practice, even if yours is a sub-specialty practice and you don’t see yourself as a vaccine provider. Even if you don’t offer flu vaccines, you can still recommend and emphasize the importance of flu vaccination as a way to keep your patients—and their families—protected throughout the season.
As promising as it is sounds that flu vaccination rates are increasing among children and healthcare personnel, Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Safe Healthcare*
The NHS Choices Behind the Headlines project in the UK analyzes claims that there is an epidemic of home allergies. Excerpt:
At least 12 million Britons now suffer from allergies caused by dust mites, The Independent has today reported. The newspaper says that a report by the charity Allergy UK has revealed an epidemic of “home fever”, a range of symptoms caused by dust mites and other triggers around the home.
The report has been published as part of Indoor Allergy Week, which is intended to raise awareness of the kind of steps that can be taken to remove allergy triggers, or ‘allergens’, from the home. A survey in the report suggests that, currently, around two-thirds of people with allergies experience symptoms such as sneezing and itchy eyes caused by allergens including dust mites, chemicals, pets and mould.
This new report raises lots of questions, such as Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Gary Schwitzer's HealthNewsReview Blog*
Can you imagine giving birth and then immediately discovering that you couldn’t hear anyone? That you were completely deaf? That’s exactly what happened to Heather Simonsen, a mother of three who lives in Utah. Simonsen noticed after each previous pregnancy that sounds would come and go and her ears felt clogged. She saw an ear, nose and throat specialist who advised her that she was gradually losing her hearing in the left ear. She also began to hear a ringing in her ear.
Simonsen didn’t realize that she was developing a condition called Otosclerosis, a disease of the bones of the middle ear. The bones of the middle ear (the maleus, incus and stapes) are usually flexible and transmit sound but with Otosclerosis, this is not possible because the bones become fused together. Simonsen is one of the Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Dr. Linda Burke-Galloway*