Medical Notes this week…


Mechanical ventilators have been the go-to intervention for patients critically ill with COVID-19…but the survival rate once on a ventilator has reputedly been only 50 percent or sometimes much worse, according to previous reports. But a study in the journal Critical Care Medicine finds a much lower death rate among coronavirus patients placed on a ventilator—about 35 percent. Age was strongly correlated with survival in these patients. Forty-two percent of those age 65 and over who were placed on a vent died…compared to 11 percent of those under age 55.

Everyone’s wiping down surfaces with disinfectant these days… but they may become contaminated again within seconds. For example, contaminating a push plate door of an office building with a harmless germ results in contamination of more than a third of office workers’ hands within four hours. But now a study in medRxiv finds that coating high contact surfaces with a new antiviral coating keeps them 99.9 percent capable of killing coronavirus two weeks later. A study last year using the coatings against MRSA shows it can cut hospital-acquired infections by 36 percent.

“Don’t worry, be happy” goes the song from the late 80’s and most of the time, less worry is a good thing. But a new study in the Journals Of Gerontology shows the one reason older men have a higher risk of COVID-19 is because they’re not worried about it. Researchers know that worry is a key motivator of health changes, but the survey shows that among all groups older men were less worried about the pandemic and had adopted the fewest number of behavior changes. However, experts say helping people understand their risk prompts change better than inciting worry.

And finally…if you’re counting on your child to grow out of being a picky eater… it may never happen. A study in the journal Pediatrics shows that children are often established picky eaters by age four, and they’re more likely to stay that way the more parents try to control their diets.

One thought on “Medical Notes: Week of June 21, 2020

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