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A Petaluma360 Blog

ER Doctor

Dr. Rick Tietz on allopathic medicine

Low Testosterone: A Marketing Ploy

As a middle aged guy, there are times when I feel tired. Sure I wish that I could have my six pack abdomen back, not have to wear reading glasses and be able to throw a ball more than 10 feet. Could it be not just from getting old but from a so called low testosterone? If you would believe some manufacturers of testosterone gel, I might be one of the countless middle aged guys suffering from low testosterone syndrome.… Read More »

Valley Fever: Payback For Desert Fun

Hanging out in the desert is great, especially if you’re from somewhere with winter snow and sleet. Instead of taking 10 minutes just to get dressed to go to the store, you can walk outside in shorts and short sleeved shirt. Great! There’s  got to be a payback, since nothing good in this world comes without some consequences. Well, one might be Valley fever Valley Fever, or cocccidioidomycosis, is a fungal infection which at times can cause some serious problems.… Read More »

Does Marijuana Work Against Pediatric Seizures?

A new study gives some hope that medical marijuana might help with childhood seizures. 200 children suffering from seizures were given an extract from marijuana. Specifically the extract contained no THC or the stuff that makes you feel high. Instead, it was formulated into marijuana oil containing CBD or cannabidiol. Seizure frequency was reduced by about 50%-a remarkable result to be sure. Other studies have suggested that CBD might be an effective measure against seizures. All currently available antiseizure medications… Read More »

Diet Soda: Not Really Diet At All?

You would think that diet soda would be a better choice for weight control than its sweetened cousin regular soda, but according to a recent study, this might not be the case. For 10 years data was collected about several hundred (749) Mexican Americans over 65 and European Americans over age 60. And like about a fifth of the American population who drank a diet soda on any given day, daily diet soda drinkers, along with occasional diet soda drinkers,… Read More »

Wealth And A Good Night’s Sleep

Lack of sleep or insomnia is truly a serious problem. In fact, insomnia has been linked to multiple diseases including cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, depression and obesity.Let’s not forget that driving while tired causes about 80,000 traffic accidents a year, a thousand of which are fatal.  To make matters even worse lack of sleep causes increased mortality: In other words you are more likely to die, if you don’t get enough sleep. What is enough sleep? Generally, at least… Read More »

OMG: Goodbye Y Chromosome

Pity the poor Y chromosome. Sure, it makes us males male and plays a huge role in the genes which control testosterone production. Yet of the 46 human genes it is by far the smallest. Not only that, but according to a recent Scientific American article, it has become even smaller. About 200 to 300 million years ago, that scrawny Y chromosome shared about 600 genes with its much more robust X partner. Recently the number of genes in common… Read More »

Football Head Injuries

Getting hit in the head repeatedly as in boxing for example seems not too healthy. Football injuries as well can cause long term problems. Just look at some of the ex NFL players who have suffered early onset dementia and other forms of traumatic brain injury. What about football players (of course helmeted) who do not suffer concussions, but have been hit in the head? Until now no one has really investigated this. A recent study of high school football… Read More »

What Not To Worry About

Sometimes we worry about potential threats to our health which in reality are less risky to us than other, more critical issues. Here are a few of these unrealistic concerns: 1. Ebola: Worldwide about 17,00 affected with 2,000 deaths. In the United States 2 people have died from this.  Contrast, as an example, the 2 Ebola deaths with the 300,000 deaths from smoking each year. You are much more likely to die driving to your doctor or to the hospital… Read More »

Can Fruit and Wine Help Atrial Fibrillation?

For most of us our hearts beat very regularly with the occasional extra beat. However, patients who have atrial fibrillation experience constant irregular heartbeats. What is happening is that the heart’s electrical system is out of whack. Instead of sending organized signals to cause heart muscle contraction, the electrical generator in the left atrium (called the AV node) fires off multiple signals all at once and the ventricle starts beating chaotically. Sometimes the signals can originate in other areas of… Read More »

The Connection Between Swallowing and Pneumonia

Swallowing is something all of us takes for granted. I mean, who really thinks about it, except perhaps when you have a sore throat. And swallowing is not only important for delivering energy (read food) to the stomach, but also to prevent aspiration. For some who have suffered a stroke, swallowing may be difficult if not impossible. This occurs if the stroke affects the nerves which are responsible for coordinating all of the muscle action required for swallowing. The muscles… Read More »