Cold and flu season started earlier than usual last winter, and it’s right around the corner again. Flu season in the US typically runs from October through May, with peak flu activity occurring around February. For the 20% of Americans who’ll come down with the flu this season, or catch one of the billion colds Americans get every year, here are some clinically proven tips that will help you get through the worst of your symptoms. See More
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According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 60,000 children end up in the emergency room every year due to accidental overdose — often from medications they find around the home.
This danger may increase around the holidays, when kids are exploring new territory in a relative’s house and grown-ups might not be keeping a close eye. It’s especially risky when older adults are involved, as many medications for people age 50+ can be very harmful to children. See More
Over 150 children died from flu last season, according to the CDC. It bears repeating: the best way to protect your kids from the flu is to have everyone 6 months or older in your household vaccinated. It can be scary if your child starts showing signs of the flu (fever, chills, muscle aches, ear pain, and respiratory issues), so here are some tips for getting them the appropriate care right away. See More
How do you save on prescriptions? It might be in the way you pay for a prescription, like using a discount instead of insurance when it’s cheaper than your copay. Or it might be in the choice of your medication, like choosing a generic over a brand-name drug. Generics often give patients a way to save, but according to a new study, we might not be using them enough.
In the study, researchers looked at Medicare Part D spending on 29 brand-name combination drugs in 2016 and found that if generics had been used instead, spending could have been reduced by about $925 million. See More
It’s logical to wonder if a medication you often take for pain is safe. There are some concerns about the popular over-the-counter pain relievers known as NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), which include ibuprofen (a.k.a. Motrin or Advil). Every week, I’m asked: How much can I take, and is it bad for my liver or kidneys?
How much ibuprofen can I take?
To treat mild to moderate pain, minor fever, and acute or chronic inflammation, 200 mg to 400 mg of ibuprofen will work. See More
Opioids like oxycodone, hydrocodone, and morphine have long been considered some of the most helpful drugs for managing acute pain. However, rates of opioid abuse and overdose deaths have skyrocketed in recent years. And now it turns out that there’s another reason to avoid opioids: they may not be the most effective treatment for pain relief after all.
Do opioids work better than other pain relievers?
Not necessarily. See More
Have a headache or a pulled muscle? Odds are over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers like ibuprofen, aspirin or acetaminophen will do the trick. And unlike prescription pain medications containing opioids, OTC painkillers aren’t habit-forming, and likely won’t leave you groggy, dizzy, or even constipated. They’re also cheap and easy to find. All pharmacies carry both brand-name and generic varieties, which are generally cheaper and work just as well. See More
“Can I get a Z-Pak?” is a question asked every day by our patients struggling with an upper respiratory infection. Trust me, I want to help you get better, but that’s not always the way to do it.
What is the Z-Pak used to treat?
The Z-Pak (Zithromax), is a five-day course of the antibiotic, azithromycin. It’s used to treat certain bacterial infections, including some sinus infections and upper respiratory tract infections (URIs) that lead to headaches, congestion, and runny noses. See More
You just took a urine pregnancy test and it’s positive, what should you do now? As a primary care doctor, many patients contact me before they’ve picked out an OB/GYN. The news of a positive test is an exciting time that often sends patients into a panic about what they should and shouldn’t be doing.
Here are the questions I’m asked all the time.
My urine test was positive. Do I need a blood test?
Generally, the urine tests are accurate enough to eliminate the need for a blood test. See More
Fevers – can’t live with them, can’t live without them. Or at least, that’s the case once you start coming down with one. Understanding what happens inside your body when you have a fever may help you determine whether to treat yours or not.
How a fever works
It seems counterintuitive that you get the shivers when you’re feeling feverish. You’re hot, but you’re also cold? But it all starts to make sense if you take a look at what’s really going on inside. See More