Injury

Dr. M’s Women and Children First Podcast – Journal Club #2 with Andrew Brackins MSIV -TBI/Concussion and Fish Oil

Journal Club #2 with Andrew Brackins MSIV

Topic today – Traumatic brain injury or concussion is a significant problem in young adults and children. What do we know about the reasons why some people suffer longer term symptoms? What can we do to mitigate risk going forward? Fish oil is an omega 3 fatty acid that has recently gained attention as a possible therapeutic pre and post head trauma. Let us explore the head injury landscape together in this Journal Club episode.

Enjoy,

Dr. M

Dr. M’s SPA Newsletter Volume 11 Issue 26

Davidson River North Carolina

It is tick time again!
We are seeing more cases of tick exposure and potential infections over the past few weeks as everyone is heading out to the mountains and beaches for vacation and regular life. Every spring and summer, many children present to our clinic with tick bites and other insect issues. While most bites are benign, some are not. Being aware of the realities and risks of tick exposure will help us make good decisions regarding medical care needs. Ticks are little 8 legged creatures (Images) that live primarily on animals in the woods and then grab onto us when we come into contact with a plant or animal that they were waiting or “questing” on for a “sucker” to pass by…. For more visit: https://www.salisburypediatrics.com/patient-education/dr-magryta-s-newsletter/960-it-is-tick-time-again
Have a great day,
Dr. M

Car Seats Done Right (Article)

Cars can be dangerous for children, especially considering the vast amount of time they spend in and around them. This fact is borne out by statistics, year in and year out. In 2011 for instance, 148,000 children were injured in automobile accidents. A third of these children were not restrained by a car seat or seatbelt at the time of their injury. Amazing. Intoxicated drivers, poorly installed car seats, and simple carelessness make injuries and death of children in cars mostly preventable. Continue reading

The Truly Amazing Story of Ian (Article)

 

 

With the permission of him and his family, I am going to tell you what happened to a patient of mine named Ian. Three years ago on a hot summer day, Ian went to the pool with his brother to go swimming.  They played games, competing and challenging each other physically like brothers do.  During a game of “How far can you go underwater?,” Ian’s brother noticed that Ian stayed underwater too long . Tragically, an 18-year-old lifeguard and an adult neighbor dragged Ian out of the water blue, lifeless and almost dead.  Ian’s life was now in the hands of  others, his  neighbor and a teenage lifeguard.  How quickly life can change!

Unfortunately, all of the pool water that Ian inhaled severely damaged his lungs; doctors just didn’t know whether the damage extended to his brain.  He spent weeks in the pediatric ICU with all the advanced respiratory support the doctors could muster. The most extreme measures were used to keep Ian going.  Things didn’t look good; the medical staff told Ian’s parents that he had just a fifty percent chance of surviving.  While the family prepared for the worst, however, Ian fought back.

A month after entering the hospital, a frail and exhausted Ian went home with fairly good lungs and, fortunately, a great brain and spirit.  His recovery was truly miraculous, a testament to his wonderful medical care, his religious faith, and his remarkably strong strength of character.

Knowing Ian’s story, I was thrilled when his mother called me recently to tell me that Ian has a summer job.  Not only has he managed to make a complete medical recovery against very steep odds, strengthen his bonds with his family, return to school and earn good grades, but now he has a summer job as, of all things, a LIFEGUARD!  Talk about giving back, this guy is AMAZING!  When I spoke to him recently, he told me that he hasn’t saved anyone yet, but he is ready to return the life saving favor to anyone who needs him. I know he will.

 

If you have comments, log onto my pediatric blog at www.docsmo.com.  Take a few minutes to explore the literally hundreds of articles and posts on the site.  Until next time.

 

Written by Paul Smolen MD

 

 

 

 

 

From the desk of Doc Smo: More on Injury Prevention (article)

Many of you are probably aware that I attended and graduated from Rutgers Medical School. When I was there, Rutgers was a very young start-up medical school attached to a prestigious old university named Rutgers. Since my graduation, the school received a major endowment from the Robert Wood Johnson foundation (RWJF) of Johnson and Johnson fame. Since then, they have changed the name from Rutgers to—you guessed it—the Robert Wood Johnson School of Medicine. In addition to funding my alma mater, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation supports a lot of health policy research. My interest in the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation brings us to today’s memo.

 

I recently read about a new policy study that was supported by the RWJF, which took a close look at various state laws with respect to child and adult safety.  The report is called: “The Facts Hurt: A State-by-State Injury Prevention Policy Report.” After grading each state on the strength of their laws, the researchers overlaid this data on the actual accident rates each state has suffered in the recent past. Did they find that states with strong safety laws had lower accidental injury rates…? You bet they did. While the correlation is not perfect, I think you will see if you look at their data that states with strong safety laws tend to have less accidental injury. The strictest laws are found in California and New York, and they have the lowest rates of accidents. The weakest laws are found in Montana, Ohio, Idaho, Kentucky, North and South Dakota, and South Carolina. All these states scored in either the worst or next to worst accident rates.

 

The point is that accident prevention, either by parents or by state legislatures, does make a difference in protecting both children and adults from accidental injury. Enforcing seatbelt, helmet, drunk driving, sports safety, and dating violence laws do have a positive impact on our health. Yes, these laws do encroach on some personal freedoms, but in my opinion this is a small price to pay when we are talking about protecting our children, neighbors, and fellow citizens from serious harm.  Take a little time to copy and past the link below and browse the report.   I think you will be glad you did.

 

http://www.rwjf.org/files/research/74400.5885.thefactshurt.20120521.pdf

Baby Walkers…beware! (Pedcast)

Baby walkers are fun for infants and can be useful for parents.  They just aren’t safe!  Dr Smolen lays out the facts about these devices and encourages parents to stay away.  This is a must listen to podcast for anyone considering using an infant walker.

Continue reading

From the desk of Doc Smo: Sunscreen Essentials (Article)

As you send your children off to the wilds of summer camp, the pool, the lake, and other very sun-intense places, you should know some basic facts about young people and exposure to intense sunlight that includes ultraviolet rays. Young people are very susceptible to photo damage of their skin for number of reasons:
 
*Their skin is thinner than adults, and radiation presumably penetrates that much deeper

*They haven’t been out in the sun as much, and they therefore have less pigmentation to act as a natural sunscreen and to limit photo damage

*They are less aware of their surroundings and the danger intense sun exposure poses for them.

*They are therefore much less likely to protect themselves by getting out of the sunlight.

*Since sun damage may take more than 25 years to show itself, very young children are much more likely to live long enough for light-induced tumors actually to form.

*Finally, young children are more likely to expose more skin to the sun because they often lack inhibition to being naked or semi-naked.
 
If all that isn’t enough, consider the following data collected a number of years ago. People who had a severe BLISTERING sunburn in childhood have increased their chance of the deadliest type of skin cancer–melanoma skin cancer–tenfold! That’s right, they were TEN TIMES more likely to develop skin cancer than their peers who had not had severe skin damage as a child. The genetic injury to the skin cells that ultraviolet radiation causes is permanent and will be carried with your child for the rest of their days. I don’t think there is any doubt that a BLISTERING sunburn is really bad for you and your children.
 
Let’s review some things you need to consider at the beginning of the summer to make your next day in the sun as safe as possible:
 
*Use clothing with tight weaving or added sun protection to cover your children as much as possible. Hats, special swim clothes, and sunglasses with UV protection are great. Try to get clothes with a UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) of at least 25 or better.

*Try never to talk about a “healthy tan,” and make sure you set a good example by protecting your skin as well.

*Avoid prolonged outdoor activities at peak sun times: 10am to 2pm.

*Try to stay in shade whenever possible.

*In children six months or older, use a good sunscreen on areas most prone to sun damage (THE TOPS): top of nose, top ears, top of feet, and top of shoulders. I recommend sunscreens with either zinc oxide or titanium dioxide. Blue Lizard and Vanicream are two of my favorites. Put them on frequently and liberally!

*Early summer seems to be the time of year for the worst burns. Be especially careful in May/June.
 
Have fun, but be smart about it.