2019-20 CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC
The Calabar Old Boys of Atlanta are sharing this info from their president:
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is caused by the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The disease was first reported in Wuhan, China in December 2019. Since then, it has spread to just about every country. The result of infection by this virus varies from no symptoms; mild to moderate symptoms, which is the majority of those infected; to severe illness that leads to recovery; and death.
What is the disease?
The virus has a liking for the lungs and those who get infected, some of them may develop pneumonia. Some of the patients who develop pneumonia will have injury to the lungs and blood vessels, and they will have a problem getting enough oxygen going from their lungs to the blood and other organs. This is very serious and often results in them dying.
How do I get it?
The infection is spread from human to human. When someone with the infection coughs, sneezes, speaks, or breathes, the virus is released into the air in very small droplets that are not visible to the naked eye. These droplets then float in the air for a while before falling to the ground, countertop, furniture, and other surfaces. While air-borne, the infected droplets may be inhaled by someone in close proximity to the infected person. The infection can also be passed on when the droplets that were on the furniture, countertop, door knob, appliances, and other items are touched and become transferred by the hands to one’s mouth, nose, or eyes.
How long after being exposed to an infected person does it take to develop symptoms?
The time from exposure to the start of symptoms varies. Symptoms could start as early as 1 day after exposure or up to 14 days; however, the average is 5 days.
hat are the symptoms?
Most people who are infected by the virus will have no symptoms or will experience only a mild flu-like illness that consists of the following:
FEVER – often a low-grade fever, less than 100 degrees Fahrenheit (normal is 98.6) but this could rise higher with time.
COUGH – may or may not have sputum associated with it.
FATIGUE – feeling of generalized weakness, tiredness
SHORTNESS OF BREATH – cannot get enough air. This may present as breathing rapidly (more than 20 breaths per minute).
MUSCLE ACHE – ache and pains all over your body, especially in the thighs, legs, arms, and torso.
Other symptoms that have been reported in a minority of patients include DIARRHEA, LOSS OF SMELL, LOSS OF TASTE, LOSS OF APPETITE, SORE THROAT, HEADACHE, NAUSEA, VOMITING, AND ABDOMINAL PAIN.
What are the emergency signs that I should be looking out for?
- Difficulty breathing: Person is breathing rapidly (more than 20 times per minute) or just cannot seem to get enough air.
- Persistent pain or pressure in the chest: The heart may not be receiving enough oxygen.
- Confusion: Due to lack of oxygen to the brain.
- Lethargic: Patient appears sleepy and it is hard to stimulate them and keep them awake.
- Blue lips and finger tips: Due to not having enough oxygen in the circulating blood.
How do I protect myself from becoming infected?
- Avoid close contact with others unless you know that they do not have the virus.
- Stay at least 6 feet away from anyone if you do not know if they are infected.
- Hand washing:
- Wash your hands with soap and water frequently for at least 20 seconds. Wash them immediately when you get home, before eating, after touching any surface that you think may be contaminated by droplets of the virus, and after using the rest room.
- If you do not have access to soap and water, then you can use a hand sanitizer that is made from at least 60% alcohol. However, soap and water are preferred.
- Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, or nose unless you have washed your hands.
- Practice good hygiene.
- Do not cough into your hands and then touch anything with them. Wash your hands with soap and water.
- Cough and sneeze into a tissue and throw it away in the garbage or flush it in the toilet, then wash hands.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a mask or handkerchief when you have to go out of the home.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces that are touched frequently, such as appliances, computer keyboards, door knobs, faucets, countertops, cellphones, TV remote controls, etc.
- Clean the surface first with soap and water where practical, then disinfect with diluted bleach.
What is the usual outcome for those who are infected?
Most people who are exposed to the virus will have no symptoms or will develop only a mild flu-like illness. However, some patients are more likely to develop a more severe illness that will require hospitalization and ICU care. These include the following group of people:
- Adults 65 years and older
- 8 out of every 10 COVID-19 deaths in the USA have been in adults over the age of 65
- Chronic lung disease, such as moderate to severe asthma, chronic bronchitis, emphysema
- Chronic kidney disease on hemodialysis
- Chronic liver disease, such as cirrhosis, hepatitis
- Cardiovascular disease, such as congestive heart failure, coronary artery disease
- Diabetes mellitus, especially if it is uncontrolled
- HIV/AIDS and other immune deficiency diseases
- Obesity – morbidly obese people defined by a body mass index (BMI) of 40 and higher
- Cancer patients being treated with chemotherapy drugs that weaken the immune system
What should be done if a household member is infected?
- Physically isolate that person to a separate part of the house if possible. Have the person separate from the rest of the family for at least 14 days or until they are no longer having symptoms of the disease, whichever is longer.
- Have the infected person wear a mask that covers the nose and mouth at all times.
- If possible, have the infected person use a different bathroom. If this is not feasible, then clean up after them with diluted bleach. Be sure to clean toilet, faucets, basin, bath tub, counter top, and shower stall daily.
- Provide separate utensils for the infected person to drink from and eat meals. Disposable utensils work well.
- Household members should also wear a mask to lower the chances of inhaling droplets from the infected person.
- Practice good respiratory hygiene.
- Disinfect countertops, appliances, door knobs, and other nonporous surfaces daily or as often as needed.
Is there treatment available for the COVID-19 disease?
Most patient infected by COVID-19 will not become symptomatic or have only mild symptoms. These people do not need to be treated and can be managed by observation and supportive care. If they have fever, give them Tylenol (acetaminophen). If they have diarrhea, give them lots of fluid to drink, preferably with electrolytes such as sodium, potassium, and phosphorus. Sport drinks and Pedialyte work well for this. Lemonade is good, as well as ginger tea with lemon and honey.
Medications are available to treat COVID-19 disease; however, none are approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat this condition. Hydroxychloroquine by itself, or in combination with Azithromycin, has shown some benefit in some patients. Clinical trials have started to study their effectiveness.
If I am infected with COVID-19 and have no symptoms, can I pass it on to others?
The simple answer is YES. So, keep a safe distance from others, practice good respiratory hygiene, and cover your nose and mouth with a handkerchief or mask when around others.
When should I contact my doctor or go to the emergency room?
If you develop any of the emergency signs or symptoms above, then you should contact your doctor or go to the emergency room for further evaluation and management
I hope that you will find this information useful. Please take care of yourselves.
David Anderson, M.D., FACP
President, COBA Atlanta Chapter, Inc.
Why is your Waist-to-Hip Ratio important?
More than 60 years ago, the French physician Jean Vague observed that people with larger waists had a higher risk of premature cardiovascular disease and death than people who had trimmer waists or carried more of their weight around their hips and thighs. (1) Decades later, long-term follow-up studies showed that so-called “abdominal obesity” was strongly associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and death, even after controlling for body mass index (BMI).
Cardiovascular deaths in one recent study were 2.75 times higher for those of normal weight who had big bellies compared to those with both a normal BMI and a normal waist-to-hip ratio. It also implies that monitoring one’s belly fat is more important than watching BMI.
In people who are not overweight, having a large waist may mean that they are at higher risk of health problems than someone with a trim waist.
- The Nurses’ Health Study, one of the largest and longest studies to date that has measured abdominal obesity, looked at the relationship between waist size and death from heart disease, cancer, or any cause in middle-aged women. At the start of the study, all 44,000 study volunteers were healthy, and all of them measured their waist size and hip size.
- After 16 years, women who had reported the highest waist sizes 35 inches or higher”had nearly double the risk of dying from heart disease, compared to women who had reported the lowest waist sizes (less than 28 inches).
- Women in the group with the largest waists had a similarly high risk of death from cancer or any cause, compared with women with the smallest waists. The risks increased steadily with every added inch around the waist.
Click here to calculate your waist-to-hip ratio: http://www.healthcalculators.org/calculators/waist_hip.asp
Swap Your Diet, Swap Your Cancer Risk, New Study Finds
If you weren’t quite convinced that you are, at least mostly, what you eat, a new study should help persuade you.
Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh, Imperial College London, Wageningen University in the Netherlands, University of Helsinki, University of Illinois, and the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa followed participants in the U.S. and in South Africa, asking each group to switch to the diet of the other country.
That is, African-American people in the U.S. ate a South African diet for two weeks, and South African people ate an American diet for two weeks. The switch, though brief, effected some pretty impressive changes in both groups of participants, from inflammatory markers to gut microbes. Read more>>
A brief walk can offset hours spent sitting
According to research published September 8, 2014 in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, taking really short but frequent walks can counteract the harm caused by sitting for long periods of time, a new study suggests.
The researchers found that even just a five-minute stroll can help.
The impairment in endothelial function is significant after just one hour of sitting. It is interesting to see that light physical activity can help in preventing this impairment.”
According to background information from Indiana University, sitting for a prolonged period of time can cause blood to pool in the legs. This happens because muscles are not contracting and pumping blood to the heart as effectively. As a result, the ability of blood vessels to expand from increased blood flow can become impaired. Being sedentary is also linked to high cholesterol and a larger waistline, which increase the risk for heart and metabolic disease.
Overall, the researchers found, the ability of the arteries in the legs to expand was reduced by as much as 50 percent after just one hour of sitting. The men who walked for five minutes for each hour they spent sitting, however, had no reduction in the function of their arteries during the three-hour period.
The researchers concluded that the increased muscle activity and blood flow from the small amount of exercise offset the negative impacts of sitting.
Fruit and vegetable consumption and mortality from all causes
Dose-response relation between fruit and vegetable consumption and risk of mortality
Results of a study published in the British Medical Journal (July 29, 2014) to examine and quantify the potential dose-response relation between fruit and vegetable consumption and risk of all cause, cardiovascular, and cancer mortality are quite interesting.
What is already known on this topic
The association between fruit and vegetable consumption and risk of mortality has been examined in many studies, but the dose dependency of this association has not been determined in a meta-analysis
What this study adds
Higher consumption of fruit and vegetables is associated with a reduced risk of all cause mortality, with an average reduction in risk of 5% for each additional serving a day (6% for fruit and 5% for vegetables)
There was a threshold around five servings a day, after which the risk of death did not reduce further
There was a significant inverse association for cardiovascular mortality, but higher consumption was not appreciably associated with cancer mortality
Read the full research at; http://www.bmj.com/content/349/bmj.g4490
Vitamin D and Cancer
The Dirty Dozen Fruits and Vegetables
U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration put together a list of the “dirty dozen” fruits and vegetables, or those that contain the highest amount of pesticide residues even after being washed with a high-pressure washing system.
Reduce your exposure to pesticides by up to 80 percent by buying the organic version of the Dirty Dozen fruits and vegetables:
- Domestic blueberries
- Sweet bell peppers
- Spinach, kale and collard greens
- Imported grapes
The 15 fruits and vegetables that are relatively clean of pesticide residues are:
- Sweet corn
- Sweet peas
- Kiwi fruit
- Sweet potatoes
- Sweet onions
What can we learn from the Pima Indians about diabetes?
What happens to your blood after a Burger and a shake…
Do you know your Body Mass Index (BMI)? BMI is a number calculated from a person’s weight and height. BMI provides a reliable indicator of body fatness for most people and is used to screen for weight categories that may lead to health problems.
Check it here: BMI Calculator
Check your BMI against the table below:
|Category||BMI range – kg/m2||BMI Prime||Mass (weight) of a 1.8 metres (5 ft 11 in) person with this BMI|
|Severely underweight||less than 16.5||less than 0.66||under 53.5 kilograms (8.42 st; 118 lb)|
|Underweight||from 16.5 to 18.4||from 0.66 to 0.73||between 53.5 and 60 kilograms (8.42 and 9.45 st; 118 and 132 lb)|
|Normal||from 18.5 to 24.9||from 0.74 to 0.99||between 60 and 81 kilograms (9.4 and 13 st; 130 and 180 lb)|
|Overweight||from 25 to 30||from 1.0 to 1.2||between 81 and 97 kilograms (12.8 and 15.3 st; 180 and 210 lb)|
|Obese Class I||from 30.1 to 34.9||from 1.21 to 1.4||between 97 and 113 kilograms (15.3 and 17.8 st; 210 and 250 lb)|
|Obese Class II||from 35 to 40||from 1.41 to 1.6||between 113 and 130 kilograms (17.8 and 20.5 st; 250 and 290 lb)|
|Obese Class III||over 40||over 1.6||over 130 kilograms (20 st; 290 lb)|