wheelchair-1230101_1920-300x169The elderly and vulnerable in nursing homes are being sexually abused and raped at a rate that is higher than we could have imagined. Those shocking facts come from a new report released by CNN, which finds that many incidents of rape involving elderly members of nursing homes are not even being prosecuted.

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broken-arm-2117980_1920-169x300Studies report that many as 75% of all medical malpractice lawsuits that claim radiology errors might be linked to cognitive biases by radiologists. Radiologists must be trained about the existence of these biases and be equipped with the skills to deal with them.

For instance, radiologists often suffer from a context-related bias, because they do not have an appropriate clinical or framing context when they’re interpreting an image. This can result in the radiologist making the wrong decision, with possibly serious consequences. Such risks are higher when a patient’s medical history is incomplete.

According to the report, radiologists can get around this problem by ensuring that they have information that is directly supplied by patients, in addition to the clinical histories that they already have at their disposal. That gives them greater context in which they can make an appropriate and correct decision.

whisky-644372_1280-300x200With all the focus on anti-distracted driving measures these days, it is easy to lose sight of the fact that drunk driving kills more people than any other accident factor across the country, except speeding. Thankfully, the number of drunk drivers on our roads has significantly declined, but motorists in Indiana continue to be at risk from intoxicated drivers.

A look at Indiana’s drunk driving accident statistics for the past few years provides a more complete picture. According to the Centers For Disease Control And Prevention, as many as one in three traffic accident fatalities in the United States involves legally drunk driver. The term refers to a driver operating a motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol concentration of a minimum of .08%.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also estimates that there were a total of 2,210 alcohol-related accident fatalities in the state of Indiana between 2003 and 2012. The vast majority of fatalities involving intoxicated drivers were persons in the age group between 21 to 24.

pills-1885550_1920-300x225The results of a new study that specifically focused on registered nurses found that the most common types of drugs associated with medication errors by registered nurses, were cardiovascular drugs.

The study which is due to be published soon in the journal Applied Nursing Research, found that among the cardiovascular drugs analyzed in the study, most of the medication errors involved anticoagulants. While approximately 22.7% of medication errors involved cardiovascular drugs, 11.3% of those errors were associated with anticoagulants.

In the study, the researchers found antimicrobial drugs accounted for approximately 19.1% of the errors, while electrolytes accounted for about 11% of the errors, and both endocrine drugs and analgesics accounted for 8.8% of the errors recorded. Among the antimicrobial drugs, vancomycin was most susceptible to medical error, with an error rate of 6.1%. Among the cardiovascular drugs most susceptible to medication errors were heparin, warfarin, and enoxaparin.   

heart-1767552_1280-300x169Women are approximately 50% more likely to be wrongly misdiagnosed after a heart attack, a dangerous trend that places their lives at severe risk.

According to a new study, which focused on patients admitted to NHS hospitals in Britain, as many as 3 in 10 female patients have an initial diagnosis that is different from the final diagnosis.

There are two different types of heart attack: A Stemi attack involves a complete blockage of the coronary artery that is responsible for supplying blood to the heart muscle. However, the NStemi type of heart attack involves a partial blockage of one or more arteries. The NStemi type is more common, although both of these types of heart attacks can result in significant harm to the cardiac muscle.

Winter-Weather-300x204It’s hard to live in Indiana in the winter. While this year has been more mild than most, those trapped on Indiana roads in December know that conditions can change in a matter of minutes, making any commute a dangerous proposition.

It is critical that Indiana drivers prepare themselves for the sudden changes that winter can bring. A number of good safety tips can help make you and your loved ones safe while traveling on Indiana highways and byways over the next couple of months.

For instance, ensuring that your car is in good working order can reduce the possibility of being stranded on the side of the road. Winter temperatures that fall well below freezing are hard on batteries, belts and hoses. Have your car inspected, the battery tested, and make sure that all the fluids filled.  A full reservoir of windshield washer fluid can ensure that your visibility is at its best when driving in slushy, wet road conditions. If your tires are worn out, you will have limited control over your vehicle if the roads are covered in ice or snow. Having tires with a good tread is critical to safe driving.

baby-hand-300x174Erb’s palsy is a condition linked to nerve injury during childbirth. When the upper nerves of the neck are injured during birth, it gives rise to this terrible condition.

Erb’s palsy is typically caused when the baby’s head and neck are stretched and pulled to the side, during a delivery. When the nerves are stretched, the resulting injuries can cause weakness in the nerves which are responsible for allowing the baby to move arms, and shoulder muscles. An injury to these nerves will reduce feeling or movement in the shoulders, arms and hands. A child who has Erb’s palsy may be unable to move the shoulders, reach his arm up above his head, and perform other activities that should be easy as he grows older.

The doctor or pediatrician will conduct tests in order to determine whether your child has suffered Erb’s palsy. These tests could include x-rays, and even nerve tests. The pediatrician will check the baby’s response to the Moro reflex test, which is an involuntary response to any kind of stimulation. If all of these studies and tests determine that an injury has taken place, the doctor will monitor your child over a period of the next few months or even years, to determine if the nerves that have been injured have begun to recover. Remember, that most children who have suffered Erb’s palsy will recover on their own, although the recovery may take as long as two years.

apothecary-437743_1280-300x200Medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the United States, which is a horrible fact. Fortunately, in the future, we may have scientists and researchers who are much better equipped to deal with this severe health care problem.

The country’s first PhD in healthcare quality and patient safety is currently being offered at North Western Medicine. The aim of the program is to prevent the more than 440,000 fatalities that involve medical errors every year. The first batch of students with a PhD in healthcare quality and patient safety graduated in 2016. A second batch is already participating in the program.

According to experts who were involved in the program, medical errors are a major problem plaguing the healthcare industry, and over the years, too few concrete steps have been taken to reduce the errors and their impact. This is a problem that requires expert minds. In it’s current for, the medical community is ill-equipped to deal with the magnitude of the problem.

cloudy-1866581_640-300x200Even as many new big-rig trucks now come with safety features, factors like trucker fatigue and safety defects continue to persist, contributing to many truck accidents every year.  The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently conducted a truck safety study and found that two major factors contribute to truck accidents. Safety defects in trucks and extended driver work hours continue to be contributors to many trucking accidents every year and as a result, in 2015, there were a total of 3,815 trucking accident fatalities across the United States.

In the study, researchers found that approximately 75% of the trucks that had been involved in accidents had defects that only came to light during inspections conducted after the accident had occurred. Truck defects that were serious enough to qualify as “out- of -service” violations were more than four times as likely to be involved in an accident as compared to trucks that did not contain such defects. Examples of “out- of- service” violations include malfunctioning brakes, worn-out tires, and damaged headlights.

However, all kinds of vehicle defects increase the risk of an accident but brake violations were found to be some of the most dangerous increasing tractor-trailer crash risk by as much as three times.

Candles-00153-300x204The holiday season is definitely not when you expect to be visiting the emergency room, but emergencies occur when you least expect it and often when they are most inconvenient. Consumer Reports has plenty of tips and advice for those who might find themselves waiting at an ER for emergency medical treatment this holiday season.

You can reduce the chances that you will need emergency medical treatment by avoiding injury risks. Many of the injuries that result in emergency room visits over the holiday season involve falls while hanging decorations. Others are a result of fires involving Christmas lighting. The Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that as many as 15,000 people are injured and have to be rushed to emergency rooms every holiday season as a result of decoration-related injuries.  

Drive safely. Car accident rates spike every year between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. Avoid driving under the influence of alcohol – drunk driving results in many serious accidents over the holiday season, many of which require visits to the emergency room. Have a plan to secure a designated driver and carefully plan out in your mind a safe route home. Be sure to avoid overcrowded routes. Be especially careful on the roads, and look out for intoxicated drivers when you are out and about, especially late at night. Drive defensively and stay alert.