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Health News Results - 199

Stressed, Exhausted: Frontline Workers Faced Big Mental Strain in Pandemic

Doctors, nurses and other frontline health workers in U.S. emergency departments have struggled with significant mental health challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic, a new poll reveals.

"As the nation moves into what many believe is a fourth wave of COVID, this study is important to our understanding of the impact of the pandemic on the mental well-being of frontline medical personnel,"...

Why Are ER Wait Times Getting Longer for Kids in Mental Health Crisis?

U.S. children commonly wait hours in the emergency room for help with a mental health crisis -- a problem that has worsened over time, a new study finds.

Researchers found that between 2005 and 2015, prolonged ER stays became ever more common for children and teenagers in need of mental health help. By 2015, nearly one-quarter of kids were in the ER for at least six hours -- up from 16% a...

He Watched His Hospitalized Son Battle COVID-Linked Illness

In January, the coronavirus swept through Brian and Maria Padla's family of seven in Philadelphia, starting with their oldest daughter, 16, and then infecting Brian, Maria, and their four younger children.

The virus seemingly came and went without much fanfare for the family. During their two-week-long quarantine, the kids spent a day or two with runny noses and low-grade fevers. Brian an...

Secondhand Smoke Is Sending Kids to the ER

Nonsmokers usually try to avoid secondhand smoke, but many kids have no option, and now a new study finds tobacco smoke exposure puts them at higher risk of hospitalization.

Compared to other kids, those exposed to secondhand smoke were more likely to have had an urgent care visit over a one-year period, and to incur higher costs for such visits. They also were nearly twice as likely to b...

When Coal-Fired Power Plants Close, Kids With Asthma Breathe Easier

Fewer children end up in ERs for asthma attacks if nearby coal-fired power plants are shut down, a new study finds.

"When these power plants close, we see a reduction of somewhere between 12% and 18% in emergency department visits for asthma," said senior researcher Emily Pakhtigian, an assistant professor of public policy at Pennsylvania State University. "When the plants close down, chi...

Kids' ER Visits for Swallowed Magnets Soared After U.S. Lifted Sales Ban

Calls to U.S. poison centers about incidents involving children and high-powered magnets surged more than 400% after a court overturned a ban on the magnets, a new study finds.

"Regulations on these products were effective, and the dramatic increase in the number of high-powered magnet related injuries since the ban was lifted - even compared to pre-ban numbers - is alarming," said Dr. Le...

On-the-Road Help: 'Mobile Stroke Units' Are Saving People's Lives

Time is never more precious than in the minutes after a stroke. Now, research is confirming that a "mobile stroke unit" can rush aid to patients quickly, potentially saving lives.

"Patients who are treated early benefit from a complete reversal of stroke symptoms and avoidance of disability," said lead study author Dr. James Grotta. He is director of stroke research at the Clinical Instit...

Drinking, Drunk, Deadly: Know the Signs of Alcohol Overdose

Wednesday is St. Patrick's Day, a holiday often marked by one (or more) too many drinks. But experts warn that simple holiday fun can quickly turn deadly when alcohol is involved.

The U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) offered these reminders about the dangers of alcohol overdose and urged everyone to drink responsibly or not at all.

Binge or high-intens...

Minutes Mean Months: Getting Stroke Care Fast Is Vital, Study Confirms

For someone suffering a severe stroke, every 10 minutes that goes by before treatment starts in the emergency room may cost eight weeks of a healthy life, Canadian researchers report.

In fact, delays in the hospital may have worse consequences for recovery than delays in getting to the hospital, they noted.

"Our study confirmed that any delay in delivering appropriate stroke treatme...

Could Low-Dose Aspirin Help Shield You From COVID-19?

It's already being taken by millions to help ward off heart issues, and now preliminary research hints that daily low-dose aspirin might also cut your odds of contracting COVID-19.

As the Israeli research team noted, aspirin is an anti-inflammatory and previous studies have shown that it may help the immune system combat some viral infections. According to the researchers, aspirin was wid...

She Barely Survived a Severe Form of COVID-19 Hitting Kids

Like many people this past year, teenager Tyona Montgomery began experiencing a sore throat and a loss of sense of smell and taste in November that suggested she might have COVID-19.

A positive test confirmed it, but she quickly felt better.

Then, just two weeks later, new symptoms surged. She was disoriented, with a headache that was so bad she called an Uber to take her to a hospi...

Panic Attack or Heart Attack? Here's How to Tell the Difference

A heart attack and a panic attack share many similar symptoms, so it's crucial to determine which one it is, experts say.

Chest pain, racing heart, shortness of breath and sweating can occur with both, but only a heart attack can be fatal, according to a team at Penn State Health.

A heart attack occurs when a blockage in an artery restricts blood flow to the heart muscle. Symptoms c...

Silent Killer: Watch Out for Carbon Monoxide Dangers This Winter

Carbon monoxide poisoning can prove fatal without a warning, because it can't be seen, smelled or heard.

It's important to be aware of it, especially during winter when you're indoors and using heat sources to stay cozy.

The Nebraska Regional Poison Center has some tips for preventing carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning and recognizing symptoms of exposure to CO.

CO is a gas produc...

Misjudging Thin Ice Can Be Fatal, Check First

Before you venture onto frozen ponds, lakes and rivers, it's critical to make sure they're safe, an expert cautions.

"A minimum of four inches of clear, newly formed ice is needed to support one person on foot," according to Curt Sinclair, a natural resources specialist at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

"New ice is usually stronger than old ice, and clear ice is usual...

Patients With Diabetes Need More Counseling on Low Blood Sugar

Doctors need to do a better job of discussing low blood sugar with patients who take high-risk diabetes medications such as insulin, researchers say.

Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) is the most common serious side effect of diabetes treatment. Severe cases can lead to falls, emergency department visits, and may increase the risk of stroke and death.

"For patients to have safe diabete...

Bedside Manner Even More Important for Hospital Patients Admitted Via the ER

Being rushed into hospital care can be an emotional experience. So, what a surgeon says to trauma or emergency surgery patients plays a role in how satisfied they are after their operations, a new study finds.

Researchers analyzed data from nearly 187,000 patients discharged from 168 HCA Healthcare hospitals in the United States in 2018 and 2019. HCA Healthcare is a publicly traded compan...

Anchor It! Toppling TVs, Furniture Can Injure and Kill Kids

It only takes a second.

Experts are warning that unsecured televisions, bedroom dressers and other heavy furniture can crush, maim and even kill curious children, and the issue may only worsen during stay-at-home lockdowns.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), between 2000 and 2019, 451 kids aged 17 years and younger died in tip-over accidents, the CPSC s...

Why Do Black Children Get Fewer Scans When They're Seen in ERs?

Black and Hispanic children who land in the emergency room are less likely than white kids to receive X-rays, CT scans and other imaging tests, a new study finds.

Looking at more than 13 million ER visits to U.S. children's hospitals, researchers found that white children underwent imaging tests one-third of the time.

That was true for only 26% of visits made by Hispanic children, a...

Heart Patients Avoiding Care During Pandemic: Survey

Many Americans with heart disease are avoiding medical care during the pandemic, a new survey finds.

Only 52% of Americans sought medical care for a concerning health problem during the pandemic, according to the survey conducted by the Cleveland Clinic. Among patients with heart disease, 63% did.

Many sought advice online or from friends and family instead of a doctor -- even ...

Are Pricey Air Ambulance Rides Really Saving More Lives?

Air ambulance service is pricey, but promises lifesaving speed by providing rapid straight-line helicopter transport for critically ill patients.

But a new study out of Denmark questions whether that expensive haste winds up saving more lives.

Researchers found no statistically significant difference in the death rate between people transported by ground ambulance or helicopter, acc...

Time to Angioplasty Is Crucial for Better Heart Attack Outcomes

When a heart attack begins, the time it takes until the blockage in a coronary artery is cleared is critical in preventing further damage to the heart, a new study warns.

The amount of damage is directly related to how long it takes from the start of a heart attack to when patients receive an artery-clearing procedure called percutaneous coronary intervention, or angioplasty. The biggest ...

Pandemic Is Tied to Big Rise in U.S. Heart Deaths

In a finding that highlights another health consequence of the coronavirus pandemic, researchers report that the risk of dying from heart disease increased during the coronavirus lockdowns last spring, likely because people were too scared to go to the hospital.

But the dangers of not seeking treatment for a medical emergency far outweigh that of catching COVID-19, especially now that pre...

When Popping Champagne at New Years', Watch Out for That Cork

As 2020 comes to a close, many people plan to ring in the new year with a bit of bubbly.

But that can lead to calamity when not done safely, warns the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), which offers tips for keeping a Champagne toast from going wrong.

A warm bottle of Champagne paired with poor technique for opening it can send a cork flying up to 50 miles per hour, threatenin...

Hurricanes Leave Rise in Hospitalizations in Their Wake

Hospitals are swamped with older patients after hurricanes, a new study finds.

Researchers analyzed data on hospitalizations for adults 65 and older in the month following eight of the United States' largest hurricanes in recent years.

In this age group, post-hurricane increases in hospitalizations for any reason ranged from 10% (Hurricane Irene, 2011) to 23% (Hurricane Sandy, 2012)...

Women Less Likely to Survive Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest

Women who are resuscitated from cardiac arrest are less likely to receive two common treatments once they arrive at the hospital, and are much more likely to die while hospitalized than men, a new study finds.

The researchers analyzed data gathered on nearly 4,900 resuscitated out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients in the United States and Canada from 2010 to 2015. Of those, just over 37...

329 Americans Are Injured by Guns Every Day: Study

Firearm injury is a major health crisis in the United States and new research sheds more light on how many of those who are injured survive and the circumstances of their shootings.

For the study, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University analyzed nationwide data from death certificates and emergency room visits.

Between 2009 and 2017, the United States...

Pandemic Is Driving U.S. Surge in Cardiac Arrests Tied to Overdose

Blame it on the pandemic: For people struggling with drug addiction, 2020 has triggered a big rise in emergency room visits for cardiac arrest tied to drug overdoses, new research shows.

The finding was based on data involving 80% of emergency medical services (EMS) "activations" across the United States. It showed "a large-magnitude, national surge in overdose-related cardiac arrest duri...

Preemie Babies End Up Hospitalized More as Kids

Children born prematurely have a higher risk of hospitalization later on than those born at full term, a new study says.

Health problems are common in premature babies, though the risk falls as they grow up. But researchers said it has been unclear when the risk begins to drop or how it's affected by a child's gestational age at birth.

Researchers analyzed data from more than 1 mill...

More Kids Injured by Tiny Magnets After Sales Ban Was Lifted: Study

Small, powerful magnets in toys like Buckyballs building sets and jewelry kits are causing an alarming number of serious pediatric injuries in the United States, new research warns.

Analyzing national data, researchers found an 80% rise in these injuries to children from 2016 to 2019, following the repeal of a sales ban on the magnets by a federal court.

When these small rare e...

Fewer ER Visits for Asthma Crises After Obamacare: Study

Ambulances made fewer trips transporting patients with asthma emergencies in New York City after the Affordable Care Act went into effect, new research shows.

The likely reason for the decline: Patients had greater access to outpatient management of their condition, the researchers said.

"Our research suggests that giving access to affordable health insurance to people with asthma c...

COVID CPR Safety Measures Don't Lessen Survival: Study

The effectiveness of CPR isn't compromised when EMS crews and others take recommended safety precautions against the new coronavirus, researchers say.

Interim guidance issued by the American Heart Association and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says health care providers should take extra precautions during the pandemic. That includes using personal protective equipmen...

Homeless More Likely to Die After Heart Attack

Homeless people are three times more likely to die after a heart attack than other patients, a new study finds.

"Our study shows a dramatically higher rate of mortality after heart attacks in people experiencing homelessness compared to non-homeless patients," said researcher Dr. Samantha Liauw of the University of Toronto. "More research is needed to discover the reasons for this di...

'Weekend Effect' Affects Survival Odds for Rural Stroke Patients

Stroke patients have a higher risk of death if they're admitted to a rural hospital on the weekend, a new study finds.

University of Georgia researchers analyzed 2016 data on stroke deaths at U.S. hospitals to learn whether the so-called "weekend effect" influenced stroke outcomes.

"The weekend effect is the phenomenon where the risk of bad or adverse outcomes, such as morta...

Always Be Ready for a Trip to the ER

Accidents happen, and being prepared for an emergency room visit could help speed treatment and reduce anxiety if the need occurs, an expert says.

The first step is determining which ER you want to use in the event of a sudden or severe illness or injury, said Dr. Susan Promes, chair of emergency medicine at Penn State Health Medical Center.

"You'll want to know what's avail...

FDA Warns of Danger From 'Benadryl Challenge,'  Asks TikTok to Remove Videos

Parents and other caregivers need to be more aware of the potentially lethal "Benadryl Challenge" circulating on social media, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned Thursday.

The new internet dare, broadcast widely on teen-friendly TikTok, urges kids to overdose on the over-the-counter antihistamine Benadryl to achieve a hallucinatory state.

However, attempts to do s...

Blood Test Could Spot Those at Highest Risk for Severe COVID-19

If you're unfortunate enough to be admitted to the hospital with COVID-19, a common blood marker may predict how severe your illness might become, new research shows.

The blood marker is called "red cell distribution width" (RDW) -- basically, the greater the variance in the size of red blood cells, the poorer a patient's prognosis, the study authors explained.

A COVID-19 pa...

Search and Rescue Dogs Fared Well After Working at 9/11 Sites

Search and rescue dogs used during the 9/11 attacks lived as long as dogs not at the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon, a new study finds.

"I was at Ground Zero and I would hear people make comments like, 'Did you hear that half of the dogs that responded to the bombing in Oklahoma City died of X, Y, or Z?' Or they'd say dogs responding to 9/11 had died," said Dr. ...

Clear Danger: Glass-Topped Tables Injure Thousands Each Year

At Rutgers New Jersey Medical School's trauma center, Dr. Stephanie Bonne and her team noticed a string of patient injuries caused by broken glass tables.

"They were quite serious, significant injuries that required pretty big operations and long hospital stays," said Bonne, who is an assistant professor of surgery and trauma medical director. "We wanted to see, is there anything that...

Could Drones Delivering Defibrillators Save Lives?

The answer to saving lives from cardiac arrest someday could include sending drones to the rescue.

A recent randomized trial tested whether delivering an automated external defibrillator (AED) by drone would be faster than an ambulance and more accessible for bystanders than looking for AEDs in nearby buildings.

About 350,000 people experience out-of-hospital cardiac arrest ...

TikTok 'Benadryl Challenge' Has Killed at Least One Teen

A new internet dare, broadcast widely on teen-friendly TikTok, urges kids to overdose on the over-the-counter antihistamine Benadryl.

But the "Benadryl Challenge" has already killed one teen and sent others to the ER, experts warn.

According to News4 in Oklahoma City, one 15-year-old girl suffered a fatal overdose while reportedly trying the challenge late last month....

Could You Save a Life After Mass Violence? Most Americans Say No

Most Americans aren't confident that they could provide lifesaving help after mass violence or other emergencies, a nationwide poll shows.

While most respondents felt they could call 911 and about half said they could provide information to first responders, far fewer said they could do much more. Only 42% were confident they could provide first aid and 41% said they could app...

Skull Fractures, Broken Jaws: 'Beanbag' Rounds Shot at Protesters Cause Severe Harm

When police and National Guard troops mobilized during protests that broke out across the nation this spring following the death of George Floyd, they often resorted to the use of so-called "beanbag" rounds of ammunition when confronting crowds.

Beanbag rounds -- a small cloth bag filled with lead shot and fired from a standard shotgun -- are thought to be strong enough to cause pain ...

Many Deaths Labeled 'Cardiac Arrest' Could Be Drug ODs: Study

Americans have long known that there's an epidemic of opioid abuse and deaths in the United States. But a new report suggests the true extent of these tragedies has been underestimated.

The study, from researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, finds that 1 in every 6 deaths attributed to sudden cardiac arrest among San Franciscans between 2011 and 2017 may, in fact, ...

COVID-19 Fears Stop Americans From Seeking Help for Heart Emergencies

Black and Hispanic Americans are much more likely than white people to avoid going to the hospital for heart attack or stroke symptoms during the COVID-19 pandemic, an online survey reveals.

More than half (55%) of Hispanics, 45% of Black people and 40% of white people said they'd be scared to go to the hospital if they thought they were having a heart attack or stroke, be...

People Are Dying, Going Blind After Drinking Hand Sanitizer, CDC Warns

Federal health officials have been warning for weeks that illegal forms of hand sanitizer containing toxic methanol are being sold across the United States.

Now, new data from Arizona and New Mexico illustrate the danger: During the months of May and June, 15 people were rushed to hospital after drinking hand sanitizer containing methanol.

Four of them died and three went bl...

COVID-19 Fears Had Sick, Injured Americans Avoiding ERs

Visits to hospital emergency rooms fell off sharply in March when the COVID-19 pandemic started keeping people at home -- and a new study reports they never returned to normal.

"This is a case where public messaging appears to have worked too well," said researcher Dr. Edward Melnick, associate professor of emergency medicine at Yale University in New Haven, Conn. "We said, 'stay hom...

Even With PPE, Risk of COVID-19 Still High for Frontline Workers

At the peak of the pandemic in the United States and United Kingdom, frontline health care workers, especially minorities, had much higher risks for COVID-19 than other individuals, a new study finds.

Paramedics, who are often the first to see sick patients, are at far greater risk of testing positive for COVID-19 than others, the researchers said. That's especially true for frontlin...

9/11 First Responders Have Higher Odds for Alzheimer's: Study

First responders to the 9/11 terrorist attacks appear to be at increased risk for Alzheimer's disease and dementia, new research suggests.

The prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and mild thinking impairments among them is well-known, and now two studies from Stony Brook University in New York have identified changes in their brains similar to those in dementia patient...

COVID-19 Jitters Shouldn't Keep You From the Emergency Room

Fear of COVID-19 is keeping keep some people from getting medical help for critical conditions like stroke and heart attack, experts say.

In the first months of the pandemic, doctors at the Penn State Health Hershey Medical Center saw a 50% drop in the number of patients going to the emergency room for serious illnesses.

Although these numbers are starting to trend upw...

Pandemic Has ER Docs Stressed Out and Weary: Survey

The coronavirus pandemic has left many U.S. emergency doctors with high levels of anxiety and emotional exhaustion, a new study finds.

The research included 426 emergency doctors (median age: 35) in seven cities in California, Louisiana and New Jersey who were surveyed during the early stages of the outbreak.

The doctors reported having moderate to severe anxiety at work and...