Lockdowns and Late Cancer Diagnosis: Is There a Link?

  While COVID quarantines dramatically reduce the spread of the disease, they also lead to a variety of unintended health consequences. Many of these relate to delays in preventative care, with early signs and symptoms missed due to a lack of testing or because these issues aren’t as easy to spot during telehealth checkups. Below, we explore the possible link between quarantine and late cancer diagnosis: COVID and Cancer Diagnosis: What the Research Says While research on the connection between lockdown and cancer diagnosis remains limited, data published in JAMA Network Open notes an alarming drop in the number of…

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Understanding the Differences Among Influenza, COVID, And the Common Cold

  Experts and ordinary individuals alike draw comparisons between COVID and the prominent form of influenza with which we’ve dealt with for generations. These are sometimes useful, as some of the strategies (such as masks and social distancing) used to mitigate the flu can also work for COVID. Still, it’s important to understand how these diseases differ, as we clarify below: Symptoms Both influenza and COVID-19 can prompt a variety of symptoms ranging from mild to life-threatening. People with both illnesses may suffer: Headache Shortness of breath Fatigue Fever Sore throat In some people, however, COVID goes beyond these symptoms…

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The Great Barrington Declaration And COVID: Part II

  Signed in early October, 2020, the Great Barrington Declaration proposes an alternate method for handling the COVID pandemic. This statement advocates for a risk-based approach to mitigation, in which most people under the age of 60 are able to go about their lives as usual, while older individuals take extra precautions. In the first part of our blog series on the Great Barrington Declaration, we delved into the specifics of how this approach to COVID mitigation might work. Now, we’ll take a closer look at the individuals who signed the document, as well as the primary sources of criticism…

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When Should You Consider Getting a Second Medical Opinion?

You’ve visited your doctor in search of answers to your most urgent medical issues. Now, your gut tells you that their response was off. Intuition holds far more value than many health care professionals will acknowledge, so it may be worth your while to seek a second opinion. Keep the following considerations in mind as you continue your hunt for answers: Your Symptoms Have Yet to Disappear If your symptoms persist even after you follow your doctor’s instructions, an incorrect diagnosis may be to blame. Don’t assume you need to continue living with pain or discomfort. A second opinion may…

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Hospitals Are Taking a Financial Hit Due to COVID — Does This Make Them Less Safe?

  The widespread economic impact of COVID caused damage in virtually every industry imaginable. The health care sector, in particular, has dealt with major losses, prompted by a reduction in elective services and the inability of some patients to pay for COVID treatment. Unfortunately, the current financial issues causing headaches for hospital staff also affect patients. The following are a few of the most notable concerns that are impacting quality of care in the midst of the pandemic: Understaffed Facilities At a time when most hospital beds are full, you might expect to see more health care workers on the…

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COVID-19 and the Increased Risk of Medical Errors

Could Doctors or Nurses Be Too Distracted By COVID-19 to Provide Proper Care For Non-COVID Patients? Health care professionals face a heavy burden in a time of COVID. Every day, they place themselves at risk of infection as they care for more patients than they’re equipped to handle. Many are alarmingly short on sleep, taking on extra responsibilities to cover for coworkers who have contracted the disease. Even if they manage to remain physically healthy, the sheer mental burden of working in healthcare during a pandemic can be difficult to overcome. Given the unique challenges faced by today’s doctors and…

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Doctors, Nurses, And Other Healthcare Workers: Could Their Pandemic Burnout Put Patients At Risk?

  Far too many healthcare professionals suffered burnout long before coronavirus entered the lexicon. Today, however, overwork is even more of a threat. While demands vary between departments and facilities, many doctors and nurses report considerable fatigue prompted by the pandemic. This represents a huge risk not only for medical workers, but also for the vulnerable patients they treat. The State of Burnout in Healthcare United States medical professionals entered the coronavirus pandemic with alarming rates of burnout. An article from the Harvard Medical School references the current situation as “stabbing a fresh wound.” Doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers…

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Quarantine Era Surgery And Diagnostic Delays: What Dangers Do They Cause?

  In the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, several quarantine initiatives placed a moratorium on elective surgeries and other healthcare procedures. Additionally, many patients replaced traditional in-person checkups with virtual appointments, which, while helpful, do not always provide a sufficient substitute. These strict measures are beginning to ease up, but many patients still struggle to determine whether greater risk lies in avoiding medical settings or seeking critical care. We offer insight into this difficult decision below: The Risk of Delayed Diagnosis While the dangers of delayed diagnosis vary considerably based on the condition in question, early detection is always…

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Why Doctors Don’t Listen to Patients — And What You Can Do About It

  Excellent bedside manner is crucial in healthcare, and yet, many doctors fail to grant patients the respect and consideration they deserve. Not only is this distressing on an emotional level, it can lead to negative physical outcomes. You’re not as helpless as you might think, however. The following suggestions will help you take action and ensure that doctors pay attention: Document Symptoms Thoroughly Doctors sometimes struggle to restrain themselves from rolling their eyes when their patients rattle off lists of symptoms from WebMD. While these concerns are often valid, it’s also possible for patients to see problems where they…

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The Latest Science on How COVID Impacts Nursing Homes

  When the novel coronavirus first hit the United States, its impact was greatest in nursing homes throughout the nation. These remain the epicenter of some of the disease’s worst outbreaks. It’s easy to see why: not only do these facilities house those most vulnerable to the illness, many harbor unsanitary conditions and suffer numerous other forms of neglect. The problematic nature of COVID within nursing homes is confirmed in the latest scientific studies, which hold alarming findings. Below, we highlight the implications of the most relevant research — and how it might influence mitigation efforts moving forward. The Importance…

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