Every now and then, a patient will come through my office with a mild skin infection. Since they’re not coming to me about it, often it’s not bothering them too much, but that fact belies what can happen if the infection is left too long. I think this is where this week’s question from Lucinda comes from:
With so many diets out there, I understand why it can be hard to figure out where to start when you want to lose weight. It can be especially challenging to figure out what the pros and cons of each plan are which then makes it hard for you to compare diets to each other. I’m guessing this is where Michelle’s question came from:
On a periodic basis, I have patients come to my office who obviously don’t want to be there. Often a concerned spouse or loved one has dragged them there in spite of protestations of good health or a problem that will probably go away on its own. As a man, I can attest to the fact that men are the worst about this. Study after study has shown that men underuse health care and often downplay their conditions. I’m guessing this is where Karen’s question to me on Twitter came from:
There’s nothing more embarrassing than white flakes of dandruff in your hair or on your shoulders. The success of the many antidandruff shampoos available in pharmacies across the US shows us that this is a problem that affects many, many people. These efforts to avoid embarrassment are probably what pushed one fan of the show to send me this question through Twitter: »
I talk a lot about weight loss on the show, and for good reason. The average American waistline has been increasing year after year, with almost 70% of us now overweight or obese. But losing weight is hard. Millions of Americans struggle every year to drop weight and keep it off, even when they know that doing so is the best thing for their health.
Finding out how to drop the weight for good can be a long and arduous process, which is why I wanted to answer Tasha’s question this week:
The cooler weather is here to remind us that flu season is around the corner. And while we should all be going out for flu shots to protect ourselves from the flu virus, bacterial pneumonia is a more insidious side to the cold weather that can also show up around this time.
Pneumonia is common and dangerous among older adults, but younger people can get it, too. One of our viewers asked me for more information on the risk factors for pneumonia and how you can protect yourself from repeat infections:
It’s no secret that as we age, things change. While we alter our lives for many reasons, not all habits need to be modified. That is exactly the case when it comes to our diet, as one of my Twitter followers asked: »
No one enjoys having their heart broken. But for some people who have experienced an emotionally traumatic event like the loss of a loved one or a break up, a “broken heart” can become a medical problem in addition to an emotional one. One of my viewers, @Just_Me_4_Him, asked me about this unusual phenomenon on Twitter:
Prenatal vitamins are a must for pregnant women who need higher amounts of vitamins and minerals like folic acid and iron to keep their growing babies healthy. Taking these vitamins can also be a good idea for women who are trying to conceive, since certain developmental problems may develop very early on in a pregnancy, possibly even before a woman knows she is pregnant, and can often be prevented by sufficient amounts of folic acid. However, some women who aren’t pregnant or even trying to get pregnant choose to take prenatal vitamins for other, more cosmetic reasons – but is this a good idea and is there any evidence to back it up? That’s what Teresita wants to know:
Acute pancreatitis is usually hard to miss, with severe abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and often a fever. It’s also important not to miss it, since leaving it untreated could lead to dangerous complications and even death. Plus, in some people, pancreatitis may cause inflammation that does not heal or that may worsen over time, leading to chronic pancreatitis. One of my viewers asked me about ways to avoid this painful disease: