2021’s Top 5 Tips to Reduce Health Insurance Fees like Copays, Coinsurances, Deductibles

How to reduce or eliminate health insurance fees copays, coinsurances, and deductibles in 2021?

By Natan Schleider, M.D. Written February 27th, 2021 4 minute read

This is a sample claim I received from my insurance company saying I owed 70 dollars. The insurance company is wrong.
A REAL CLAIM FROM EMPIRE BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD I RECEIVED.. SEE WHERE It SAYS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY IS 70 DOLLARS. THAT IS WRONG! I AM ENROLLED IN A COPAY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM. I OWE ZERO DOLLARS!

The above insurance paperwork is what patients may get in the mail. It looks like a bill and patients freak out.

Health insurance is complicated. How many patients can define a copay, know what coinsurance is, know what a deductible is? In my experience not many.

As a patient, the doctor’s office either accepts my insurance or or does not.

Well it is not that simple. For example, many patients have plans called PPO insurance plans that allow them to see doctors ‘Out of Network’ meaning that doctor does not have a contract with their insurance company. These plans, which tend to be more expensive and better plans, allow patients to see a larger number of doctors.

2021’s TOP FIVE TIPS TO REDUCE OR NOT PAY COPAYS, COINSURANCES, OR DEDUCTIBLES:

  1. ASK ABOUT FINANCIAL HARDSHIP PROGRAMS: Copays are an amount of money you must pay every time you consult the doctor or go to the hospital or have lab tests done or have imaging done like x rays. Many nonprofit companies exist that help patients pay their copays like Copay Relief or Patient Advocate Foundation. Your doctor’s office can help you apply for these financial hardship programs OR you can go online and do that yourself.
  2. UNDERSTAND WHAT COINSURANCE IS. Coinsurance is a relatively new way for health insurance companies to reduce their expenses by making the patient pay usually 10% of the overall medical bill. Since this can get expensive, find out if your doctor’s office offers a Financial Hardship Program if you cannot afford your coinsurance OR find an insurance plan that does not have coinsurance.
  3. UNDERSTAND WHAT A DEDUCTIBLE IS. A deductible is an amount of money the patient pays BEFORE their insurance company will pay anything toward the patient’s care. Seek a low deductible insurance program and realize that if your deductible is very low, say 100 dollars, your 1st doctor visit may eliminate the deductible.
  4. BE HONEST AND TELL YOUR DOCTOR YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND OR CANNOT AFFORD THESE ADDITIONAL FEES. You may find doctors offices understand that these are difficult financial times and lots of us are out of work. If you cannot pay today, maybe you can in a few months when you have a job.
  5. FIND COUPONS FOR YOUR PRESCRIPTION MEDICINES TO ELIMINATE PRESCRIPTION COPAYS AND SHOP AROUND AT DIFFERENT PHARMACIES. I love to use www.goodrx.com since this give me a list of what my medicines cost at different pharmacies and gives me coupons to reduce costs. You would be surprised at how much pharmacies may be overcharging, shop around.

BOTTOM LINE: JUST BECAUSE YOU GET A DOCUMENT IN THE MAIL FROM YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY THAT SUGGESTS YOU OWE THE DOCTOR’S OFFICE MONEY, DON’T FREAK OUT. CALL THE DOCTOR’S OFFICE AND SPEAK TO THE BILLING DEPARTMENT. INSURANCE COMPANIES ARE WRONG ALL THE TIME.

For more information on understanding how to save money on insurance and medicines visit www.doctorinthefamily.nyc which is the new office / telemedicine division of DOCTOR IN THE FAMILY.

5 Secret Tips to finding a Good Psychiatrist in NYC in 2021

By Natan Schleider, M.D. Written January 24th, 2020

Doctors without gloves studying gross anatomy.tients until the 19th Century
The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp,by  Rembrandt van Rijn
( 1632) Mauritshuis, The Hague

How to find a good psychiatrist in NYC has been an issue for years. Most do not accept insurance. Many doctors and psychiatrists are working remotely during the COVID19 pandemic. For those patient who prefer office visits here are 5 tips that you have found a good NYC psychiatrist or doctor:

  1. Clean lab, good doctor. Dirty lab coat,, sloppy medical care.
  2. Hand writing easy to read, good doctor. ‘Chicken scratch’, bad doctor.
  3. Doctor office with old magazines in waiting area, bad doctor. Magazines current, good doctor.
  4. Bathrooms are dirty, dated, disheveled, so is the doctor. Bathrooms clean, contemporary, neat, good doctor.
  5. Doctor greets you personally at the door upon arrival and runs on time, good doctor. You sit in naked (in a paper gown) in freezing tiny exam room and see nurses, ancillary staff, and ultimately the doctor more that 30 minutes late for less than 5 minutes, bad doctor.

Finding a good psychiatrist in New York whether you prefer remote virtual consults or not:

  1. If you are unable to pay for psychiatry consults out of pocket, than obtain a health insurance plan with GOOD OUT OF NETWORK BENEFITS (PPO PLAN). Most New York psychiatrists do not accept insurance; however a good insurance plan may reimburse you for your consult
  2. Expand your search for a psychiatrist outside of NYC. Given the COVID19 pandemic a psychiatrist outside of New York City (but licensed in New York State) can manage your care.
  3. If you like to check reviews of the psychiatrist you are seeking, use a reputable website that has a lot of traffic and does not curate their reviews like Google or WebMD.
  4. Most good psychiatrists are booked when using online appointment websites like zocdoc BUT their office may have cancellations so call the office,
  5. Ensure the psychiatrist treats your medical condition and prescribes the medicines you need. For example, I do more medicine management than psychotherapy. Good NYC psychiatrists and good NYC patients do their homework BEFORE the visit.

Thanks for reading and please visit my other blog articles.

NYC Psychiatry & Primary Care is Certified in SPRAVATO (Esketamine) Treatment to New York City Patients with Depression

7 Tips for NYC Patients seeking SPRAVATO (Esketamine) Treatment for Depression

Image of Spravato, a medicine called esketamine administered intranasally

Ketamine, an anesthetic with anti-depressant properties, treats stubborn depression. Depressed patients treated with esketamine (Spravato) often note significant mood improvement for weeks to months on average.

As of late 2020/early 2021 Spravato is difficult to obtain. Pharmacies and doctors must become REMS certified to dispense and administer Spravato.

Seeking a NYC doctor or psychiatrist to prescribe Spravato–if so, this article is for you.

7 Tips for NYC Patients seeking SPRAVATO (Esketamine) Treatment for Depression

  1. Firstly, qualifying for Spravato treatment requires a diagnosis of intractable depression, in other words, having tried and failed at least two antidepressants.
  2. Spravato is available only at certified pharmacies and is closely monitored by the authorities like FDA and DEA.
  3. NYC Patients must go to their doctor’s office for Spravato treatment for depression where the patient’s pharmacy will have delivered their Spravato.
  4. NYC Psychiatrists and Primary Care Physicians administered Spravato. Monitoring for elevated blood pressure, sedation, and other side effects occurs 2 hours after treatment.
  5. Appointments are required during Spravato therapy twice weekly.
  6. Spravato treatment information for patient can be found on pages 2,3,14, & 15.
  7. Treatment for depression with ECT or medicines does NOT prevent you from trialing Spravato.

In conclusion, esketamine (Spravato) is an FDA approved medicine for chronic stubborn depression with promising results.

If you enjoyed reading please visit my my blog for additional articles.

THANKS FOR READING!

NATAN SCHLEIDER, MD

Ashwaganda, the Royal Herb of Ayervedic Medicine: An Herb with Anti-Anxiety Properties and Much More

Ashwagandha, the Royal Herb of Ayurvedic Medicine, Can Be Used in Treatment of Anxiety and Much Much More

Ashwaganda is a medicinal plant found in Asia and Africa. Many phytochemicals have been extracted from Ashwagandha.

The literal meaning of the word “Ashwagandha” is “smell of horse” for two reasons. One reason is that the fresh roots of the herb emit the smell of horse. The second reason a belief that a person consuming extracts of the ashwagandha herb may develop the strength and vitality similar to that of a horse 

Ashwagandha is the most commonly used and extensively studied adaptogen. Adaptogens are herbs that improve an individual’s ability to cope with stress.

Adaptogen herbs with ASHWAGANDA AT TOP LEFT.

Ashwagandha has a central and prominent place in Ayurvedic medicine (the traditional system of medicine in India). Ashwagandha is a “royal herb” because of its rejuvenative effects on the human body.

Ashwagandha is a multipurpose herb that acts on various systems of the human body: the nervous system, the immune system, the endocrinal system and the reproductive system.

Ashwagandha has also been studied as antioxidant, anticancer, anxiolytic (anti-anxiety), antidepressant, cardioprotective, thyroid modulating, immunomodulating, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, cognitive enhancing, hematopoietic agent, anti-hyperglycemic, neuropharmacological, immunomodulatory, cardioprotective, musculotropic, hepatoprotective, radiosensitizing, chemoprotective, anti-aging, macrophage-activating, diuretic, cholesterol reducing, aphrodisiac and rejuvenating agent.

Ashwaganda plant native to India has data that it reduces stress and anxiety
Ashwagandha plant for anxiety treatment

Ashwagandha dosage

Ashwagandha root powder is used at dosages of 300 mg to 2 grams, Capsule and tea formulations doses are 1 to 6 grams daily. Tincture dose is 2-4 mL by mouth three times daily.

Ashwagandha side effects

Nasal congestion (rhinitis), constipation, cough and cold, drowsiness and decreased appetite were seen in people who take 300 mg Ashwagandha root extract 116). An analysis of the adverse events recorded in this study 117) indicates that high-concentration full-spectrum Ashwagandha root extract is safe and well tolerated as there were no serious adverse events. The side effects that were observed were mostly mild in nature and no known causal mechanisms relate them to the study drug. Insignificant changes in laboratory values were observed in both the groups. The results on safety in this study are consistent with previous studies on Ashwagandha, where generally there were no adverse events leading to drop outs or withdrawal symptoms 118). Long-term administration of the roots of Ashwagandha was found to be safe also in animal studies 119). A word of caution, however, those allergic to herbs belonging to the Solanaceae family are contraindicated for treatment with Ashwagandha.

FOR ANY PATIENT RELUCTANT TO TAKE PHARMACEUTICAL MEDICINES TESTED AND APPROVED BY THE FDA THIS MAY BE A REASONABLE ALTERNATIVE.

Thanks for reading and please visit my blog for more articles and contact me if you found any typos or are looking for different medical subjects.

7 Vital Medical Items You Need BEFORE a Pandemic to Prevent Hospitalization for COVID-19

Louis Pasteur (1822-1895), French Microbiologist, Chemist, Pioneer of ‘Germ Theory,’ Inventor of Pasteurization. Quote attributed to Louis Pasteur In the fields of observation chance favors only the prepared mind.’

‘Hi doctor, I was exposed to Coronavirus 19 and now feel fever, chills, cough, and/or difficulty breathing. Do I have COVID-19 & when should I go to the hospital?’

Written by Natan Schleider, M.D. March 25th, 2020 10 PM 3 MINUTE READ

NOTE TO ALL MY PATIENTS: INFORMATION PROVIDED BELOW IS BASED ON CURRENT CDC GUIDELINES LAST REVIEWED MARCH 25TH, 2020 AND THEREFORE LIKELY TO CHANGE GIVEN THE DYNAMIC NATURE OF A PANDEMIC; HOWEVER, SINCE STARTING MEDICAL PRACTICE IN NEW YORK CITY IN 2005, MY GOAL REMAINS KEEPING YOU OUT OF THE HOSPITAL AND LOWERING YOUR RISK OF HOSPITAL-ACQUIRED INFECTION.

TO KEEP YOU SAFE AND THINKING RATIONALLY, REDUCE YOUR RISK OF STRESS, ANXIETY, WORSENING MOOD DISORDER, AND/OR MOOD INSTABILITY, STAY IN CONTACT WITH ME AND MY OFFICE. DO NOT WAIT UNTIL YOUR MEDICINE BOTTLE IS EMPTY BEFORE SCHEDULING A CONSULT. THERE IS NO SHORTAGE OF PRESCRIPTION MEDICINES (ALTHOUGH SOMEMEDICINES NOT NORMALLY MASS PRODUCED LIKE CHLOROQUINE ARE BACK-ORDERED). IT IS NORMAL TO GET ANXIOUS WHEN RUNNING LOW ON MEDICINE SO PREVENT THAT ANXIETY BY SCHEDULING DOCTOR CONSULTS WELL IN ADVANCE.

PLEASE OWN A PULSE OXIMETER AND KNOW HOW TO USE IT. THEY COST AROUND 50 DOLLARS, CAN BE BOUGHT ONLINE, & MAY SAVE YOU A TRIP TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM. IF YOU KNOW HOW TO USE A LARGE PAPER CLIP AND HOW TO INSTALL BATTERIES INTO THE BACK OF A REMOTE CONTROL, YOU KNOW HOW TO USE A PULSE OXIMETER (A MEDICAL DEVICE ABOUT 2 INCHES LONG AND 1 INCH HIGH THAT RUNS ON 2 AAA BATTERIES THAT GIVES AN INSTANT DIGITAL DISPLAY OF YOUR PULSE / HEART RATE AND YOUR BLOOD’S OXYGEN SATURATION)

PLEASE HAVE AN ADVANCED DIRECTIVE OR LIVING WILL PREPARED. THIS IS SOMETHING EVERY RESPONSIBLE GROWN UP ADULT SHOULD HAVE LIKE HEALTH INSURANCE OR CAR INSURANCE. PLUS IT IS FREE. SHOULD YOU VISIT AN EMERGENCY ROOM THE DOCTORS AND NURSES WILL WANT TO KNOW WHO YOUR HEALTH PROXY IS (A HEALTH PROXY IS A PERSON TO CONTACT IF YOU GET SICK NEED, SO SICK OR CONFUSED THAT YOU CANNOT ACCURATELY ANSWER QUESTIONS). YOU DO NOT NEED AN ATTORNEY TO COMPLETE AN ADVANCED DIRECTIVE / LIVING WILL. IN NEW YORK STATE AND THEY CAN BE FOUND FOR FREE ONLINE AND ALL YOU WILL NEED ARE 2 COMPETENT ADULTS WHO ARE NOT YOUR DOCTOR NOR WORK IN THE HEALTHCARE FACILITY YOU MAY OCCUPY: https://ag.ny.gov/sites/default/files/advancedirectives.pdf OR https://livingwillforms.org/wp-content/uploads/new-york-living-will-form.pdf

PLEASE HAVE AT LEAST 3 PAPER COPIES OF THE MEDICINES YOU TAKE AND ONE COPY ON YOUR SMART PHONE. HELPFUL HINT: LINE UP ALL YOUR MEDICINE BOTTLES INCLUDING OVER THE COUNTER MEDICINES AND TAKE A GOOD CRISP PICTURE OF THEM WITH ALL PARTS OF LABELS READABLE.

Before calling your physician worried with any coronavirus 19 COVID-19 questions, please be ready to answer your doctor’s questions and follow these instructions (because this is what I will ask you):

Doctor Question 1: ‘When did you last check Center of Disease Control (CDC) recommendations about coronavirus COVID-19 Website?’

Intelligent Prepared Patient Answer 1: ‘I visited the CDC website before calling you.’

Doctor Question 2: ‘Have you checked your vital signs including Temperature, Respiratory Rate, Pulse, and Oxygen Level?’

Intelligent Prepared Patient Answer 2: ‘Yes because I own a thermometer and pulse oximeter and know how to use them.’

Doctor Question 3: ‘What is your temperature over the last 12-24 hours and does it go down if you take a fever reducing medication like acetaminophen (Tylenol) or an NSAID like ibuprofen (Advil) or Naproxen (Alleve)?’

Intelligent Prepared Patient Answer 3: ‘My thermometer reads 100.4 degrees Farenheit [38 degrees Celcius] AFTER the maximum recommended dose of acetaminophen (or ibuprofen or naproxen).

Doctor Question 4: ‘What does your pulse oximeter read?’

Intelligent Prepared Patient Answer 4: ‘My pulse oximeter which I put on my fingertip is reading BELOW 95%-98% oxygen saturation. My pulse is reading on average ABOVE 100 beats per minute.’

Doctor Question 5: ‘What is your respiratory rate?’

Intelligent Prepared Patient Answer 5: ‘I counted the number of times I took a breath over 60 seconds at least twice before I called you and the rate was above 20 and yes, I used my inhaler and took an anti anxiety medicine you prescribed’

Doctor Question 6: ‘Do you have a bag packed for a log emergency room or hospital stay as advised?’

Intelligent Prepared Patient Answer 6: ‘Yes including my medicines and my phone charger.’

Doctor Final Question 7: ‘How are you getting to the hospital because all the vital signs you are giving me are approaching the red zone?’

Intelligent Prepared Patient Answer 7: ‘ I am on my way to the hospital already because I knew what you would ask and yes, I am wearing a facemask to protect others from getting infected.’

Coronavirus 19 STILL News March 2020 and 3 Ways to Combat Fear Generated by The Media

BY Natan Schleider, M.D. March 13th, 2020 THREE MINUTE READ

‘POLIO: POINTERS for 1951’ emphasizes washing hands; watching for signs and symptoms of fever; trouble breathing; flu-like symptoms; avoiding contact with the potentially ill

So what do you think of this coronavirus 19 thing? Because I’m scared…’

This is a common question I am getting regularly, especially from patients. Assaulted with news, updates, national guard movement, and political responses I have 3 suggestions:

  1. Educate yourself about Human Coronaviruses (there are a bunch of them) from a reputable source.
  2. Make emergency preparations within your budget and mindset and expect help from the government to come along the timeline and quality of Hurricane Katrina
  3. Study American History of viral epidemics and realize that when neither the ‘government’ nor ‘experts’ know that to advise, hand washing, isolation of the ill, and avoiding / cleaning of fomites ( objects or materials which are likely to carry infection, such as clothes, utensils, and furniture) will be advised.

Knowledge safeguards against fear so before you turn on the news or you smart phone latest feed, learn about the 7 strains of human coronaviruses currently known and ask yourself which of them CURRENTLY scare you?

Seven strains of human coronaviruses are known:

  1. Human coronavirus 229E (HCoV-229E)
  2. Human coronavirus OC43 (HCoV-OC43)
  3. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV)
  4. Human coronavirus NL63 (HCoV-NL63, New Haven coronavirus)
  5. Human coronavirus HKU1
  6. Middle East respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus (MERS-CoV), previously known as novel coronavirus 2012 and HCoV-EMC
  7. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), previously known as 2019-nCoV or “novel coronavirus 2019”

You will learn that after rhinovirus (the most common cause of the cold), coronaviruses are the second most common cause of the common cold (at about 15%).

Emergency preparation, especially in an urban environment, is extremely nuanced and from a medical perspective, is changing very quickly. If a patient with metastatic cancer on hospice is in a quarantine zone, will they be provided a large supply of opiod pain killers in the setting of an opiod epidemic AND viral pandemic?

For example, the following New York State Department of Health has new guidance which seems only applicable to Medicaid and remains active only until the ‘Declared Disaster Emergency in the State of New York COVID-19 has ended’ https://mcms.org/resources/Documents/Practice%20Manager%20Resources/Medicaid%20Pharmacy%20Guidance%20Disaster%20Emergency%20in%20the%20State%20of%20New%20York.pdf

This allows for early refills of controlled and non-controlled substances for Medicaid members due to quarantine or outbreak. Does this mean physicians can prescribe larger quantities of pain killers to the cancer patients on hospice in quarantine zones? I asked the New York DEA this past in January 16th, 2020 and they replied promptly and politely referring my to the state medical board. The New York State Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement has not yet replied to my questions.

A Review of American Response to Infectious Pandemics is quite interesting with hygiene and quarantine staple go to initiatives by the CDC or historic equivalents.

Soap advertisement for fighting Polio circa mid 1900s [with later data showing soad does NOT kill Polio virus, chlorine does]

As a result of Polio in the early to mid 1900s, soap sales went way up (like hand sanitizer is currently) despite later evidence showing that soap did not kill Polio virus, rather chlorine did.

Hope the above provided a bit of insight, knowledge and comfort.

sincerely,

Natan Schleider, M.D.

Coronavirus COVID 19 remains in the News causing ‘Turmoil’ and ‘Panic’ March 6th 2020: ‘When It Bleeds it Reads’

By Natan Schleider, M.D. March 6th, 2020 9:20 am

Information and news regarding coronavirus 19 changes as quickly as the name of the virus (1st called ‘2019 novel coronavirus’, then ‘2019 nCoV’ and now Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). This leads to a misinformed public and more confusion AND MORE CLICKS AND USE OF MEDIA NEWS WHICH IS OBVIOUSLY A STRONG FINANCIAL MOTIVE.

Example: February 12th, 2020, Article by Healthcare Purchasing News Title reads WHO renames novel coronavirus Covid-19 BUT writes in very 1st paragraph The World Health Organization (WHO) head, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said the group has come up with an official name, Covid-19, for the disease caused by the new coronavirus. If media editors and journalists cannot accurately report simple definitions like a name change, how can we trust ANY information they provide moving forward. These semantics are important. Maybe it is done on purpose (making it disinformation)

Information about SARS-CoV-2, again aka COVID19 aka coronavirus 19 causes changes, misinforms, and misleads. Moreover, by the time I finish typing half of what is written may be dated BUT media use of words crisis, turmoil, panic I can guarantee will remain in use for a long time as they have in the past.

Cultivating more anxiety creates more: readership, followers, and newspaper sales. ‘When it Bleeds It Reads’ remains tried and true.

Simply saying the truth about coronavirus 19 like We Don’t Know Much about What We Don’t Know probably would not sound good for the CDC, WHO, politicians MIGHT leave them more street credibility?

News information / updates from this morning rea something like: coronavirus 19 causes 3000 people dead worldwide and 87,000 infected.

Let me rephrase: a strain of coronavirus has caused no symptoms or cold symptoms in 96.6% of people tested with the remaining 3.3% (many with underlying serious health conditions) hospitalized or killed by either the coronavirus OR a bacterial pneumonia that easily set in when the patient’s immune system was weak.

I have to head to work so please contact me with any specific questions and I can tell you whatever crappy data and information is or is not available.

BY THE WAY, 7,000 AMERICANS DIED LAST WEEK FROM ATHEROSCLEROSIS, A DISEASE LARGELY PREVENTABLE AND HAVE BEEN DYING AT A RATE OF ABOUT 1000 DAILY IN THE USA FOR SOME TIME. THAT IS 4000 DEAD IN 1 WEEK IN 1 COUNTRY THAN CORONAVIRUS HAS KILLED WORLDWIDE. WHY IS THAT NOT NEWSWORTH?

Thanks for reading,

Natan Schleider, M.D.

How can I protect myself from the coronavirus COVID-19? 4 Coronavirus Prevention and Treatment Tips:

By Natan Schleider, M.D. February 26th 2020 2 MINUTE READ

Does this image scare you? It should if the common cold scares you. This is the coronavirus, one of the most common causes of the common cold.

4 Coronavirus COVID-19 Prevention and Treatment Tips:

  1. Keep following the Center of Disease Control recommendations daily. To date they continue to emphasize the USA is low risk. And for good reason: the coronavirus is far less deadly than the influenza virus and many other viruses that cause cold or flu-like symptoms. WANT SOME PERSPECTIVE: ‘So far, 16,000 people have died and 280,000 people have been hospitalized during the 2019-2020 flu season, according to preliminary estimates from the CDC released several days ago.’ If we use (sloppy, not quite technically accurate math) we see the death rate from influenza in the USA is about 5.7%. COVID-19 mortality rates are approximately half that in mainland China (probably lower if we include people that had no symptoms but were in fact infected)
  2. Read my blog: The 7 Effective Treatments for the Common Cold: https://www.doctorinthefamily.com/blog/the-7-effective-treatments-for-common-cold-symptoms-in-adults/ Here is a cheat sheet for those too lazy to click and sorry, chicken soup and Vitamin C are NOT on the list: Acetaminophen (aka Tylenol); Combination anthistamine plus decongestant (IE Zyrtec-D); Intransal ipratropium bromide (aka Atrovent) – particularly helpful for reducing the lingering cough after the infection which can last weeks; Intranasal oxymetazotine aka Afrin – not to exceed 10 days; Lactobacillus casei 22 grams per day in dairy products for 3 months; NSAIDs – ie Advil or Alleve; Zinc acetate or zinc gluconate – 80 to 92 mg per day within 3 days of symptom onset and continue until symptoms resolve
  3. Get an N95 Respirator Mask — not the flimsy masks we see surgeons wearing will not prevent airborne disease transmission very wello.
  4. Make sure you have the flu vaccine and get yourself some Tamiflu aka oseltamavir (and some antibacterial antibiotics) as the coronavirus may weaken your immune system allowing harmful viruses and bacteria to grow.

Thanks for reading

3 Reasons Why The Most Common Cause of the Common Cold – Coronavirus – Is Making So Much News?

Written by Natan Schleider, M.D. on January 29th, 2020

Disposable Paper Advertisement for Treating Common Cold
Vinatage Disposable Paper Advertisement circa 1950s

A common virus called the coronavirus (yes, like the beer) is making news. This virus is the most common cause of the common cold (along with rhinovirus and parainfluenza virus). This virus has NEVER killed remotely as many people as influenza virus or opiods or car crashes.

According to The New York Times ‘ 132 people had died from the virus’ to date.

For reference about 1,000 (that is one thousand) people died yesterday in the United States of America from atherosclerotic disease (artery clogging) like coronary artery disease. And 1000 people the day before…a total of ‘360,000 people will die from [atherosclerosis] each year’ according to WebMD.

So 5 Reasons Why The Common Cold causing Coronavirus is Making News:

  1. This new coronavirus may be as lethal as the Corona SARS virus which killed a total of 774 people in 29 countries according to the World Health Organization. in 2003-2004. More people died yesterday from heart attacks in the USA alone.
  2. This new coronavirus may be worse that the MERS Coronavirus which has killed a total of 858 people since 2012 in 27 countries. More people died yesterday from heart attacks in the USA alone.
  3. Anything new is fundamentally scary to humans which gets the media excited.

I am following the Center of Disease Control website actively and see no evidence that coronavirus poses a threat even close to influenza but I am no virologist, just a regular fully licensed board certified medical doctor / general practitioner.

5 Reasons to Consider the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) Vaccine in 2020: Prevention of Warts and Cervical Cancer in Adults.

By Natan Schleider, M.D. Written January 14th, 2020 3 MINUTE READ

Vintage Medicine Container for Treatment of Warts. Circa Early 1900s.

Basic Facts About Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and Disease in the USA as of 2020:

Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States infecting 1 in 4 Americans (79 million of the infected based on USA population of 330 million in 2020). This virus likes grows in skin cells where sexual contact has occurred and condoms do not prevent it. While causing a bunch of different cancers like Cervical Cancer, Anal Cancer, and Mouth (Oropharyngeal), it far more commonly causes little painless fleshy bumps called warts.

While ‘painless’ in that warts do not hurt physically, the look at you (former) new partner’s face running out the door after seeing your wart hurts. Getting the wart removed by the doctor also hurts and they can be stubborn and grow back.

HOW TO KNOW IF YOU OR YOUR PARTNER HAVE HPV:

HPV infection may not be obvious to the naked eye (nor obvious to the infected patient which is why doctor do PAP smears and HPV DNA tests during women’s health exams) sitting dormant for months to years until causing a wart or cancer, it is difficult to know whether your partner carries HPV. By the way, there is no test to confirm skin infection of HPV in men, at least nothing done routinely. We do not swab or scrape a man’s genital region to look for HPV infection, If anyone reading this wants to know why, contact me.

While the HPV vaccine better known as Gardasil has been recommended since 2006 for ages 11-26, now all men and women should consider it so….

Five Reason to Consider the HPV Gardasil Vaccine If You Have Never Been Vaccinated:

  1. You are sexually active and your partner is infected with HPV.
  2. You want to reduce your risk of getting HPV infection and are open to vaccination
  3. While considered about the risks of safety of any vaccine, 8-10 years of data not only in adults (more in children) show no evidence of any long term disease or risks of the vaccine.
  4. You do not like cancer.
  5. You have not figured out a clever, cool way to ask prospective or current sexual partners about HPV infection–if there is one?

Given this new information, I will be contacting my doctor for the Gardasil vaccine and will keep you posted. Thanks for reading.

Citation

Oshman LD, Davis AM. Human Papillomavirus Vaccination for Adults: Updated Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). JAMA. Published online January 13, 2020. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.18411