Corona virus update May 11, 2020

Corona Virus Update May 10, 2020

Prevention-

I am going out on a limb a little bit here, but I would like to suggest that you strongly consider using a face shield in addition to a mask when you go out among people from now on, for several reasons. Studies suggest that the virus is spread on large droplets that can strike your face if someone sneezes up to 20 feet away or coughs up to 10 ft away. Also, wearing a face shield is a little more effective at reminding you to keep your hands away from your face. Third, it’s good protection while being a little less intrusive and I find you can almost forget you’re wearing it. And fourth, with summer heat approaching, it may be safe, if you have a face shield on, to lower the mask a little from time to time to get a cooler breath.

For all of our inventive patients who have access to 3-D printers, here’s your chance to help save the world and maybe even start a business. One of our kind patients has donated a dozen face shields to the office (I’m still waiting for the ones I ordered from China 2 months ago- they must be on a slow boat!). Maybe he would share his templates if we ask….

For people working with COVID patients, the recommendation now is to wear hair covers. There was a study from China that also found virus on shoe tips, but in very low titers, of health caregivers   of hospitalized COVID patients.

Another study from China showed the virus can be transmitted in semen so, if you have been infected, it may be best to use condoms for 2-3 wks.

Keep washing your hands or use 70% alcohol wash cleaners, especially as you leave the grocery or other location  and again when you get home.

My son-in-law has generously donated about 200 masks to us so, if you have improvised a mask from an old T shirt or suchlike, contact us for a better mask. We would hate to have our patients be seen out in anything less than the latest fashion!

ACE inhibitor and ACE receptor blood pressure medicines (Lisinopril, Losartan, Altace, etc.) do not seem to increase the risk of developing a COVID infection.

The curve is bending. The 3-day running average of COVID admissions to the hospital is dropping, so we are making progress. We just have to be patient and disciplined. I know, easier said than done….

Treatment-

       Remdesivir still looks like the most promising medicine so far. Prone positioning sometimes helps with oxygenation. Hydroxychloquine trials have been small, unclear, biased, usually inconclusive and need to be taken out of the political arena and left in the scientific one. This is also beginning to look like a very thrombotic (causes blood clotting) disease and there have been some cases where using “clot-buster” medicines like t-PA have been very helpful in severe lung dysfunction. Johns Hopkins is starting a study with convalescent plasma and other hospitals are using it.  If you have recovered from corona virus, check the Red Cross website about donating plasma.  There are an incredible number of studies going on now. The FDA has created the Corona Treatment Acceleration Program that often approves studies within 24 hrs.

Rehash-I am astonished at how protean the symptoms of this disease are- it can present from as mild as a change in taste to the obvious cough and fever. We are fairly liberal about testing but we still have a doctor talk to you before scheduling testing.

We are seeing sick and injured patients in the office and disinfecting after every patient. If you have any corona virus symptoms or risks, please notify us when you call. Please see the 3/22/2020 blog for instructions about televisits. We can also do doxy.me televisits.

Author
Margaret S Lytton Physician

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