We would like to provide some important facts about the Corona virus that we hope will help you, your employees, family and associates better understand this virus and the related health risks. The following is a message from our CEO’s private physican, Dr. David Miller and some important links to the CDC.
Dear Patients and Friends,
If you listen to the news, Armageddon is near. The coronavirus scare is at a peak due to maximum media coverage which is not very helpful (see below). I have received texts and calls from several patients with concerns about the virus and measures to prevent. Here is some information I hope you find enlightening and useful to help reduce your stress levels related to this disease. In the event you are in the higher risk category (see below), there are additional measures to take.
WHAT THE CDC HAS TO SAY – the CDC has a comprehensive website that addresses some of the things mentioned below. Here is a link to their frequently asked questions.
It is most likely that every one of you has had a form of coronavirus in your life. Coronavirus usually causes a common cold in most, with mild symptoms. This is just a more aggressive form of the virus. If you are a healthy individual, there is a likely chance if you get sick it will simply be a cold. If you are at higher risk, it will likely be more dangerous.
If you remember SARS from years ago (2003), it was also a coronavirus. SARS which stands for severe acute respiratory syndrome – the vast MINORITY of individuals experience this complication and this is what is so deadly. Another term for SARS is ARDS (Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome).
Influenza has been much deadlier this flu season, having killed over 30,000 people since October. The vaccine is less than 50% effective and it is a record year for deaths in the pediatric age group. Influenza deaths have ranged between 12,000 to 61,000 per year. If you are currently sick, it is more likely influenza than coronavirus.
The highest risk groups include elderly (65 and over) and those with underlying health issues. ALL OF THESE RISK FACTORS HAVE APPLIED TO INFLUENZA EVERY YEAR SINCE YOU WERE BORN.
These underlying health issues include (additional conditions below):
1. Underlying lung disease (COPD which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis, MAC complex, Valley fever, asthma, bronchiectasis). COPD increases risk by 2.6 times higher.
2. Immunosuppressed patients (chemotherapy, autoimmune drugs, steroid use, HIV patients, and select patients with rare diseases that affect the immune system). Cancer patients have a 3.5 times higher risk.
3. Patients with diabetes and insulin resistance / prediabetes (some estimates of prediabetes are as high as 50% of adult Americans). This group has as high as a 60% higher chance of getting ill.
4. Hypertension and cadiovascular disease also increase risk.
5. Other factors that negatively affect the immune system – STRESS! (what all the media attention is causing!); POOR INTESTINAL HEALTH / DYSBIOSIS – this is so so true – Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine have held to this tenant for centuries; American medicine has only begun to recognize the gut lung connection over the past 6 years.
6. Pregnant women – although the numbers are small, initial data indicates pregnant women, who tend to have weakened immune and are at higher risk of disease, DO NOT GET SIGNIFICANTLY ILL (none of 9 pregnant women in China developed severe illness in early numbers).
HERE IS THE COMPLETE LIST OF HIGH RISK GROUPS FROM THE CDC WEBSITE
Following is a list of all the health and age factors that are known to increase a person’s risk of getting serious complications from the flu:
- Neurologic and neurodevelopment conditions
- Blood disorders (such as sickle cell disease)
- Chronic lung disease (such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease [COPD] and cystic fibrosis)
- Endocrine disorders (such as diabetes mellitus)
- Heart disease (such as congenital heart disease, congestive heart failure and coronary artery disease)
- Kidney disorders
- Liver disorders
- Metabolic disorders (such as inherited metabolic disorders and mitochondrial disorders)
- People who are obese with a body mass index [BMI] of 40 or higher
- People younger than 19 years of age on long-term aspirin- or salicylate-containing medications.
- People with a weakened immune system due to disease (such as people with HIV or AIDS, or some cancers such as leukemia) or medications (such as those receiving chemotherapy or radiation treatment for cancer, or persons with chronic conditions requiring chronic corticosteroids or other drugs that suppress the immune system)
Other people at high risk from the flu:
- Adults 65 years and older
- Children younger than 2 years old
- Pregnant women and women up to 2 weeks after the end of pregnancy
- American Indians and Alaska Natives
- People who live in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities
- 1 Although all children younger than 5 years old are considered at high risk for serious flu complications, the highest risk is for those younger than 2 years old, with the highest hospitalization and death rates among infants younger than 6 months old.
HOW TO AVOID
Like any disease, the healthier the immune system, the less likely to get sick and if you get sick, it will be less severe.
Hand washing – wash hands with soap and water, say the alphabet twice and that is long enough. If not available, antimicrobial hand gel is an option.
Avoid touching your face – germs from the hand to the face
Do not let your pet around sick people – airborne virus can find its way to your pets fur, and touching the pet, then your eyes, nose and or mouth can inoculate you with illness.
FACEMASK USE – HERE ARE THE CDC’S CURRENT RECOMMENDATIONS:
- CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
- Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).
Testing has been limited, although more test kits are rolling out. I do not recommend going to the hospital unless you are high risk and very sick.
SUPPLEMENTS AND MEDICATIONS
THERE ARE NO PRESCRIPTION MEDICINES available for this condition.
Here are the top supplements:
- Vitamin D – in studies has shown to be three times more effective than the flu shot for preventing flu (a similarly dangerous virus). I recommend 5,000 IU daily.
- Colostrum – in studies has been shown to be three times more effective than the flu shot for preventing flu / this helps support the guts immune function, which is critical to preventing respiratory illness. I recommend at least 1 gram daily.
- Zinc use supports the immune system. Doses higher than 50mg can cause nausea.
- Elderberry is an excellent immune supporter
- Wellness Formula by Source Naturals is an excellent immune support containing the above plus many other herbs
- If you get sick, it is better to see or contact your doctor.
- Get good sleep
- Try to manage stress well
- Avoid travel depending on risk
- Exercise in moderation
- If you are sick stay home
Dr. David Miller