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A Petaluma360 Blog

ER Doctor

Dr. Rick Tietz on allopathic medicine

Texting and Driving Don’t Mix

When you drive a car, you propel a very heavy piece of metal at times at very high speeds.  This is arguably the most dangerous activity which you do in your life-not only dangerous for you but also for others . In years past the dangers of drinking and driving have been well publicized, yet people still drink and drive. Over 30,000 persons are killed each year in this country and drinking remains a major problem. And now with the… Read More »

Reality Check for Baby Boomers

Aging baby boomers like myself now realize that the endless parties, killer workouts and disease free times are coming to an end. Ages ago we could work all day, party all night and be ready for a repeat the next day. Now the idea of staying out past 10 pm seems unpleasant and a good workout might be a short jaunt around the block. Unfortunately for us and for the rest of humanity, strength and endurance are not the only… Read More »

Belly Hernias: A Cause for Concern?

Not all hernias are created equal. The most common type is the inguinal hernia, which due to complicated and boring anatomy, seems to herniate often. A hernia is simply put a tear and through that tear stuff can come out. What comes out? Well that depends where the hernia is located. In the case of an inguinal hernia part of the intestine can be pushed through the opening, but sometimes only a little fat comes out. If the intestine can… Read More »

Hyperthermia

During the dog days of summer life is slow, sweet and oh so hot. Yes, the temperature rises and with the heat so too does the risk of overheating or hyperthermia. How to prevent from becoming too hot? First and foremost: be aware of your environment and what you’re doing. Running a 10k in 100 degree weather on streets without shade is probably not a great idea. Starting your run before 10 am or after 6 pm might be a… Read More »

A New Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis?

A Chinese herb Tripterygium wilfordii or thunder god vine (gotta love that name!) was recently studied for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. This is a disease which can cause serious and permanent deformities in joints and can affect other organs as well. One treatment that is often used is Methotrexate, which has some nasty side effects. In a recent published study the thunder god vine was at least as effective as Methotrexate. Side effects from the herb included loss of hair loss… Read More »

Physicians and Gun Control

An average of 88 people per day die in this country from firearms. It is becoming nearly impossible to discuss this issue rationally due to the politics. Let’s try for a minute to cast aside the grandstanding and look at the data which is available. Two thirds of the deaths are suicides and most of these suicides are committed by the elderly and those living in rural areas. Those, who abuse alcohol or other drugs, feel isolated and have access… Read More »

The Swollen Knee

If your knee swells and you haven’t injured it, what could be going on?   Well, most of the time you probably didn’t even realize that you twisted it just a tiny bit, perhaps when stepping off that curb late last night. Usually, there is some prior wear and tear arthritis. Yes, one of the many joys of middle age is that the knees take the brunt of all those years of sports and of course the ever expanding waistline.… Read More »

Avoid Benzocaine In Young Children and Infants

Kids and babies get sore throats, toothaches and cold sores. H0w can we help our little friends get over these things? Well, unfortunately much of the time antibiotics don’t work, because many of these infections are caused by viruses. Antibiotics don’t work at all against viruses. Yet, being human, we will think that after that hefty dose of Amoxicillin are kid got better and therefore the medication “cured” the infection. This is wrong because your little one would have gotten… Read More »

Are Video Games Antidepressants?

Video games to be sure are one of many ways to engage in seemingly mindless activity and are almost guaranteed to drive parents nuts. How do I know this? I have two kids. Still, what surprises me, a middle aged guy who at one point was a pinball wizard and who proudly has never played a single video game, is that there may actually be some therapeutic effect. There are group of researchers who are developing and testing video games,… Read More »

Caffeine: The New Wonder Drug?

Americans love coffee. The only liquid consumed more than coffee is water. Not only does the caffeine keep you awake and keep Starbucks shareholders happy, it turns out that caffeine has some other healthy effects. Regular caffeine consumption will reduce the risk of colon,uterine and prostate cancer. Not only that but there is some research out there which indicates that caffeine may even reduce the risk of Parkinson’s disease, depression and dementia. Recently, it was shown that drinking as little… Read More »