Saturday, October 31, 2009

What would you say to your doctor if...?

I'm finally reaching out for help with depression & anxiety. In a few days I will talk with my doctor about it. I suspect a hormone, or chemical imbalance of some kind. It's a free clinic and need to ask for specific tests. Unfortunately, I don't know much about depression & anxiety. What specific tests do you think I should ask for?

Wow! I really need to get educated on this stuff and fast. Do you know of any good books on the subject, especially depression? Right now it's the depression that I have to reduce in my life ASAP. It is kicking my butt.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

It's Heeere! Swine Flu is hitting Rochester, NY

Yes, H1N1 is here. It has recently started to spread. "Doctors are warning swine flu cases could peak in the next three to four weeks."

“We're in a bit of a quandary because the vaccine isn't large scale. Many high risk kids haven't been vaccinated before this hits,” said Dr. Neil Herendeen of Golisano Children's Hospital. “Most people are going to do well. They'll get through this with mild symptoms."

The increase was seen in hospitals as employee call-ins jumped. "Rochester’s largest hospitals are implementing policies that limit younger visitors access as a way to protect vulnerable populations from the H1N1 virus. Strong Memorial and Highland hospitals enacted similar restrictions today. At Strong, visitors 17 and younger are prohibited from the obstetric floor and from Golisano Children’s Hospital. Other area hospitals are following suit."

"Several local schools are reporting an increase of the number of students with flu-like symptoms, and local college campuses are also concerned about the spread of swine flu.Monroe Community College says its exposure to the swine flu virus has been minimal." "Some school districts, Pittsford, Penfield and Canandaigua have sent letters home to parents saying they've seen an increase in kids out with flu like symptoms. Rush-Henrietta says two of their schools have a 15 and 16 percent absentee rate. The rest are normal. Greece and Brockport schools report a normal absentee rate. The U of R has the highest number so far with 91 cases and seven students asked to stay in their rooms. At RIT, 14 cases and Nazareth has 25 cases to date."

Just a reminder that Monroe county is no longer counting flu cases, (at lest not publicly), so we won't know how many have the h1n1, or know of deaths in our area.

Related Topics..

Flu Hits Canandaigua Schools Hard, but remains open

Get Flu information from

New York suspends mandatory flu shots

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Have a BOO-utiful Halloween!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

A Snapshot of H1N1 (Swine Flu) from WHO & CDC

The following information is based on finding from the World Health Organization (WHO) & Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and some other sources. Some of the information is new. It gives us a snapshot of H1N1 as we currently know it.

1) H1N1 has been labled "moderate" instead of mild by WHO because "WHO is concerned about current patterns of serious cases and deaths that are occurring primarily among young persons, including the previously healthy and those with pre-existing medical conditions or pregnancy."

2) "46 percent of 1,400 hospitalized adults did not have a chronic underlying condition."

3) It's more virulent then expected. "One quarter of Americans sick enough to be hospitalized with swine flu last spring wound up needing intensive care and 7 percent of them died." "What is striking and unusual is that children and teens accounted for nearly half of the hospitalized cases, including many who were previously healthy."

4) The hardest hit have been children & young adults. Almost half of those hospitalized for H1N1 are under 25.

5) More children have died now in the very beginning of this flu season as died during all of last yeas flu season (in the U.S.). "86 children (have died) since April (CDC). That's a startling number because in some past winters, the CDC has counted 40 or 50 child deaths for the entire flu season — and no one knows how long this swine flu outbreak will last.

6) CDC says that nearly 1 in 3 pregnant women hospitalized with H1N1 have died in the U.S. (28 out of 100 died).


Folks this H1N1 pandemic is shaping up to have a bit of a bite to it. I hope that you will consider getting the flu shots that are offered this year. With the two flues and not many clinics that make vaccine, there could be a shortage especially since there is global demand. Please do not put it off until later. There might not be vaccine later.

Many who die of H1N1, dies of ARDS (acute respiratory distress syndrome). Of those who have ARDS 30% to 50% die. It is obviously very serous. I have added an article below about it. You might also want to take a look at the video. It is excellent.


How H1N1 Can Kill by Dr. Jennifer Ashton (CBS)

"Federal officials said a vaccine to help prevent the new flu is expected to be ready by mid to late October. But still some people are wondering how you can actually die from the H1N1 virus.

CBS News medical correspondent Dr. Jennifer Ashton sat down with Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith and took a closer look at what happens to the body.

Germs are everywhere - in our homes, offices, and schools. While some are harmless, others can be deadly, like the H1N1 virus or swine flu.

It spreads when a carrier coughs or sneezes; another person touches the object or surface with the flu virus on it and then touches his own nose or mouth.

The virus is inhaled by the body and goes straight to the lungs. The virus attaches to the lung cells, infecting the body. Over the course of days, the blood vessels in the lungs or the air sacs are damaged. Fluid leaks from the blood vessels into the air sacs of the lungs. While some air sacs fill with fluid, others collapse altogether. When the air sacs collapse, the lungs can no longer inflate as they normally would with oxygen. The lungs become stiff.

Without air entering the lungs, the amount of oxygen in the blood drops. If diagnosed early, some patients will get extra oxygen supplied by a breathing machine; others may fall into a coma. Patients die from H1N1 because their lungs give out via lack of oxygen or drowned by fluids.

At this time, 50 percent of H1N1 deaths are due to viral pneumonia and half the fatalities have been in people with pre-existing medical conditions like obesity, diabetes, and pregnancy.

An animation was shown that demonstrated the affects of ARDS (acute respiratory distress syndrome).

"Is that flu or is that pneumonia?" Smith asked after viewing the animation.

"Well, what that described is a situation we referred to as ARDS where the lungs literally become like sponges and can't exchange oxygen. That can happen with the viral pneumonia, a bacterial pneumonia, but half of the deaths due to H1N1 have been due to this viral pneumonia leading to that kind of pulmonary failure," Ashton explained.

Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported to Ashton that it has studied the autopsy results of the people who have succumbed to the H1N1 virus, and found that about half of the cases are in people who were either obese, had diabetes, or were pregnant and suppressed their immune system.

"So they were at a higher risk going into this virus, which, again, we have to emphasize in most cases have been mild, but they were at higher risk going into severe complications that then led to their death," she added.

According to Ashton, there's a "variable time course," where sometimes it happens over hours, days, or weeks. But Ashton stressed that once ARDS sets into the lungs and the patient is put on a ventilator, multiple organ systems then begin to fail and the mortality rate can be as high as 30 percent to 50 percent. "

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Random Ramblings #7

I'm still using the Library computer - It's frustrating because I want to stay in close touch with everyone. I am timed so I often can not visit your blogs like I want to. :( I'm working on the problem, and hope to have my home computer running again. Thank you to those of you who are still visiting me even though I can't visit you as much now. I appreciate it!

Beautiful Summer - We had a beautiful summer in Rochester. It was the 5th coolest summer, and I loved it. We only hit 90 once! It was comfortable for the most part. I didn't even have to run my A/C.

Bees Galore - I've heard there is a shortage of bees, but not here in Western, NY. Due to the unusually cool summer we have had plenty of bees, hornets, and wasps. It's a problem for some home owners, but great for our farmers.

Opera - I've never been crazy about opera music in general. I was watching part of a crazy opera on T.V. The storyline was- ...The woman pretended to be a military man. The man posed as a women. They were cousins, and falling in love. To make things more confusing they were women in real life, and both sang soprano. ...I think my brain blew a fuse trying to process it all. I wonder if people like opera more for the totally insane plot rather then the music?

Roasting Vegetables - It's easy, and adds so much flavor! Heat the oven to 450 degrees F. Place the veggies in a large pan. Toss with the olive oil or (melted butter), salt, and pepper to mix and coat. Spread in a single layer in the pan. Roast for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are lightly browned and tender. Of course you can grill them outside too. Yummy!
Getting Help - I'm finally asking for help from Social Services. It scares me to death! Please pray that everything goes through, and that I can get $ help, and mental health help very soon. I'm not looking forward to the winter. The depression is bad now, and tends to get worse in winter, so I really need some help very soon. Please send your good thoughts and prayers. I've hit a snag.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Two Specials on H1N1 (Swine Flu) Thursday Oct. 8

The Doctors are in. If you want to be more informed from doctors on H1N1, then turn your T.V. on Thursday Oct. 8th!

CDC's Dr. Richard Besser will be on ABC "Good Morning America" at 7:00 A.M. (EST), (channel 13 locally), and will answer questions concerning H1N1. Richard Besser, MD, served as Acting Director for the CDC and currently serves as director of the Coordinating Office for Terrorism Preparedness and Emergency Response (COTPER) at the CDC. He joined ABC News in September as a senior medical editor and correspondent.

That same evening at 9:00 P.M. (EST) on WXXI (channel 21 locally) is "Second Opinion: H1N1 Special Edition. an hour-long special. "This special edition features a panel of national experts along with a studio audience that had the chance to ask questions about H1N1 and seasonal flu. The panel also answered viewer questions supplied by other PBS stations." "Hosted by Dr. Peter Salgo of New York Presbyterian Hospital, Second Opinion: H1N1 Special Edition will offer clear, accurate and timely information on H1N1 symptoms, treatment, vaccines, public health policy and available resources."
photo credit here & here

Friday, October 2, 2009

CDC: 1 in 3 Pregnant Women Hospitalized with H1N1 (Swine Flu) Have Died

Historical one of the highest risks groups in a pandemic are pregnant women, and women who have recently given birth. Unfortunately this H1N1 pandemic is no exception. During a news briefing Thursday, U.S. health officials said the virus has hit pregnant women especially hard. Nearly 1 in 3 pregnant women hospitalized with H1N2 have died in the U. S.

Tom Skinner of the Centers for Disease control said that “Since the virus was first recognized in late April, early May, 100 pregnant women across the country have been hospitalized due to the novel H1N1 flu and 28 have died,”

There are two basic reasons for this. Pregnant woman have an immune system that is slow- it’s like their immune system is on standby – and it’s not as reactive as a non-pregnant person’s,” Dr. MannyAlvarez said. “And because of that, viruses, especially flu viruses of any sort can create a very severe infection.” The second challenge women face is as the baby grows inside the womb, the anatomy of a woman’s chest changes. “Their whole respiratory volume changes,” Alvarez said. “So if they get a secondary infection, such as pneumonia after the flu, it makes it very challenging and problematic for doctors to get airflow back into the lungs.”

“Just yesterday, a patient informed me that her son had the flu, so we immediately began administering antiviral medications, until the new vaccine becomes available.” Unlike other patients, pregnant women cannot get the nasal spray FluMist, Skinner said. “They must get the injectable vaccine, which will hopefully be available starting next week,” he added.

Folks, I hope that you will all get vaccinated, especially pregnant women. Historically the first wave of a pandemic is mild. It's the second wave that starts to show some teeth. We are only in the very beginning of the second wave so we are not sure how bad this flu can get.

photo credit