Hundreds of people have been hospitalized due to taking rat poison without knowing it was in the synthetic Marijuana/Cannabis. The main symptom is unexplained bleeding. They can die vomiting blood or have internal bleeding at home. The most dangerous would be bleeding in the brain which would get squashed against the skull. Some people are donating blood and they have this dangerous chemical in their donated blood.
BLOOD PRESSURE MEDICATION, VALSARTAN, RECALLED
Call you pharmacist if you are on this medication to make sure you are not taking the ones that have the toxic contaminant, which is associated with cancer.
VITAMIN D TOXIC?
Many are now tested and treated for vitamin D deficiency. Call your pharmacy if you are taking liquid vitamin D, since there are reports that some formulations may result in toxicity.
TOO MANY URGENT CARE PRESCRIPTIONS FOR UNNECESSARY ANTIBIOTICS
In a review of cases from urgent care clinics, the researchers found that many cases which should not qualify for antibiotics, received antibiotics. This can result in resistance in those patients and in others. There are helpful guidelines to prevent you from being prescribed antibiotics which don’t work for viruses and allergies.
BACON AND JERKY ASSOCIATED WITH MANIA
Researchers found that those admitted to hospitals or emergency departments with mania (too hyper and happy) had a greater number than others who had eaten cured meats with nitrates: bacon, jerky, ham, pastrami, snack sausages… No strong recommendations to quit so far.
RISK OF HIV 28 TIMES HIGHER IN GAYS
MSMs have 28 times more risk of receiving HIV than straight people. This put the risk of being gay at the same level as female sex workers, drug users, and trans-women. If you are an MSM using drugs, then your risk is even higher. Be safe with condoms or PrEP. PrEP has worked very well in dropping the HIV transmission rate in MSMs for those who do not use condoms (which also work very well). Realize that PrEP does not protect you from damaging sexually transmitted diseases (STIs) like condoms do, such as syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia. Each of these 3 sexually transmitted infections may have no symptoms until very late in the disease, so you or your partner carry it and pass it on easily.
NEW PLAN FOR VERY SEXUALLY ACTIVE
Borrego specialty services has a new plan where we screen patients at high risk of STls where we give them swabs and a urine cup for the body parts they use for sex. They come in urgently to the clinic if they feel they might have had contact with an STI and turn in the specimens and have their blood drawn for syphilis based on a standing order—they don’t need to wait to see the provider but can go directly to the lab. We will see if this catches STIs quicker. If they have symptoms, then they should be seen urgently.
New York is being more aggressive in finding and treating STIs. They recommend retesting for the STI 3 months later. If you check for gonorrhea or chlamydia sooner than 7 days after treatment it can still be falsely positive.
HIGHER MEDICAID PAYMENTS BRINGING BETTER ACCESS TO CLINICS
The recently increased rates paid to clinics for primary care, has brought more patients into care and opened more slots in clinics. Family Medicine, Pediatrics, and Specialists accepted more patients than before the fee increase. MediCaid (or MediCal) treats mainly the low-income and disabled population.
LEVELING PAYMENTS TO SPECIALSTS BY MEDICARE
Certain specialties will see a decrease and certain ones will see an increase. I see many physicians in training seeking the higher paid specialties and this plan is an attempt to make salaries a little more even. Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners are one of the groups to get a bump, since primary care by this group is very beneficial to the health care system. MediCare treats mainly the elderly.
PROGRESS TO TREAT AIDS SLOWING DOWN
The money is not coming as before and the great progress we have made is now threatened by the stalling of efforts. The United Nations is worried and the cost of lives, suffering, and money will be much higher unless these efforts are pushed forward—this situation is like the one for fixing climate change, we don’t pay attention to the noise in the car and it is very expensive or too late by the time we are motivated to fix it.
BONE LOSS IN HIV TREATMENT
Switching to the more bone-friendly HIV medications was not as effective as adding a bone reinforcing medication: zoledronic acid after 2 years of treatment in Australia.
HIV CURE NEWS
A 9 year old girl in South Africa stopped antivirals after being on it her first year of life and has an undetectable viral load 8 years later. They are studying her to see how they can capture this effect for more people. She was part of a study to treat infants for about 2 years or 1 year.
Daniel Pearce, D.O., FACOI, AAHIVMS
Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine, Loma Linda University School of Medicine
Adjunct Professor of Internal Medicine and HIV, Touro University California College of Osteopathic Medicine and Midwestern University Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine
HIV Specialist, Borrego Health (Riverside, San Bernardino, San Jacinto)
Member, Coachella Valley Clinical Research Initiative