The Doctors: Infant Died From Herpes Simplex I
During their weekly Friday News Feed, The Doctors asked the question, “Is it contagious?” One such contagious, and very common, health issue is herpes. In England, a two-month-old baby died from complications of the herpes simplex virus. The baby contracted the virus through a kiss from his father, who had a cold sore at the time.
The Doctors emphasized the tragedy in this story, but it’s not possible to pinpoint a specific cause without knowing more. For example, the baby’s mother could have had herpes as well. Dr. Lisa Masterson explained that women with herpes often require C-sections in order to avoid transmitting the virus to their child.
Once you contract the herpes virus, it lives in you forever. Even when you don’t have an outbreak or a cold sore, you could still be contagious. When it comes to babies, “you just need to be cautious,” Dr. Travis Stork emphasized. If you have a cold sore, or any open lesion, make sure it’s covered and unable to be transmitted.
The Drs: Smallpox Virus Transmitted
In 1796, smallpox became the first disease treated with vaccines. The vaccine works by purposefully infecting people with cowpox, which differs from other vaccines in that the virus is not dead. Many of us born in the latter part of the 20th century were never immunized against smallpox, because the disease was eradicated in 1977.
However, there are certain people who are immunized against smallpox, including certain members of the military. A man recently transmitted the smallpox vaccine to his partner during the time he was still contagious.
Dr. Travis explained that cowpox actually infects the skin and causes a blister that is contagious for about three weeks. It’s important to avoid physical contact with people during this time, because the disease can be easily transmitted.
The Doctors: Hair Dye Allergy
The Doctors shared the story of Mike, a young musician who dyed his hair black for a performance with his band. His mom Joann, a hair dresser, suggested that he try an allergy patch test first. Mike went ahead and had his hair dyed anyway, but soon regretted not listening to his mom’s advice. Soon, Mike’s head became itchy and almost immediately began to swell. Within hours his face and head were swollen to a gigantic size, and when the swelling began to spread to his neck, Mike decided to receive emergency treatment.
Mike and his mom, Joann, joined The Doctors via Polycom to share this scary ordeal. Joann explained that when a client has virgin hair (meaning it’s never been dyed before), manufacturing instructions call for a patch test. PPD is the chemical found in hair dye that could cause extreme allergic reactions. Joann said that reactions are very rare, but when they do occur, they’re severe.
Dr. Travis said that once severe swelling begins in an allergic reaction like a hair dye allergy, it’s time to go to the E.R. Don’t wait because it could quite literally be the last thing you ever do.
The Drs: Obesity and Car Safety
The Doctors discussed the increased mortality rate for obese drivers. A person whose BMI is 40 or higher has an 80% increased risk of death from a car accident. This is due to factors such as seatbelt function, surgical complications and airbag reaction time. Dr. Travis explained the importance of finding a safe car. Further, seatbelts should be redesigned to better accommodate all people.
The Doctors: Sneezing While Driving
Finally, The Doctors discussed the issue of sneezing while driving. Did you know that 2500 accidents a week are caused by sneezing? Research has shown that if you close your eyes for half a second that’s long enough to travel 50 feet at 60 miles per hour.
Sneezing while driving can be scary, because you can’t help but close your eyes – it’s your body’s natural reaction. However, Dr. Andrew Ordon emphasized that you aren’t killing brain cells by holding in a sneeze. Still, you could be doing damage by causing pressure to the sinuses and surrounding area.