“Now a study from New York University shows that artificial intelligence can make that prediction with about 80 percent accuracy. But the measures the computer says are most predictive aren’t what doctors expected—it’s not fever or lung images. Instead, the computer considers measurements of liver enzymes, hemoglobin in the blood, and deep muscle aches.”

MEDICAL NOTES 20-20


Medical Notes this week…


People with heart attacks and other health emergencies are avoiding the emergency room for fear of contracting COVID-19, and doctors worry it may result in a lot of deaths they could have prevented. A survey by the American College of Emergency Physicians shows that 29 percent of people have delayed or avoided medical care because of COVID-19 fears, and a survey of nine major hospitals shows that the number of severe heart attacks treated has dropped by nearly 40 percent. Stroke and appendicitis cases have dropped by about the same proportions. Doctors fear that some patients are dying at home rather than going to the ER.

Having a way to predict which moderately-infected COVID-19 patients will get worse and which ones won’t could free up scarce resources such as hospital beds and allow more patients to recover at home. Now a study from New York University shows that artificial intelligence can make that prediction with about 80 percent accuracy. But the measures the computer says are most predictive aren’t what doctors expected—it’s not fever or lung images. Instead, the computer considers measurements of liver enzymes, hemoglobin in the blood, and deep muscle aches.

Having your first child by C-section may lead to impaired fertility. A study in the journal JAMA Network Open shows that women who had their first child via c-section were 15 percent less likely to have a second child in the next three years whether they were trying to conceive or not.

And finally… men, if your wife says she needs just a little more sleep, believe her. A study from Loughborough University in the UK finds that women need about 20 minutes more sleep per night than men, because their brains are more complex and do more multi-tasking than men do. Women are also more likely than men to experience depression and anger if they don’t get the sleep they need.

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