Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Nice Guys Might Finish Last...But A Heart Attack Will Kill You

I don't care how tough you are...if you wake up because you feel a weight on your chest, see a doctor. If you develop chest pains that radiate to your left arm, see a doctor. If you feel heart palpitations ever, even if you think they're happening because you're with the love of your life, see a doctor. If, when you're driving, you press on your break pedal but your car doesn't stop, well in that case see a mechanic, your doctor isn't going to be able to help with this one.

Point being, chest pain is a big deal. Your heart is kind of essential for living. Don't be the guy who waits a week before coming into his doctor because you aren't going to like hearing you have permanent cardiac damage that could have been averted if you only saw us earlier.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

What does H1N1 mean?

As you probably already know, pig farmers and Jewish and Islamic interest groups have finally convinced the WHO (World Health Organization) to rename the swine flu virus to the influenza H1N1 virus, but what does H1N1 mean?

Every strain of influenza has an H protein, hemagglutinin, which allows the virus to attach to human host cells, and an N protein, neuraminidase, which destroys mucous. There are multiple types of hemagglutinin and neuraminidase, so the numbers that follow H and N describe the specific type of hemagglutinin and neuraminidase found on that strain. Hemagglutinin and neuraminidase are important because they are essential proteins that allow the influenza virus to infect us. For example, influenza causes a soar throat by clearing the protective layer of mucous usually covering the throat cells with neuraminidase, it then binds to the uncovered cell with hemagglutinin, and finally the virus injects itself into the cell and destroys it.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Swine Flu: Lose-Lose for Politicians

This swine flu virus (now H1N1 flu virus) is bad news for politicians across the globe. If government officials do not handle the flu outbreak promptly and properly, they will allow a global pandemic. Obviously, their voters will rally around this inaction as an example of government ineptitude. However, if they do handle the outbreak properly and prevent a pandemic, many voters will probably forget about the swine flu and only remember the large number of tax dollars that were used to fight a problem that never happened.

I think that there are a good number of people that, paradoxically, can only appreciate the potential devastation of an outbreak if they see it happen, and obviously, if the outbreak is prevented, it won't be seen. Of course, I think the politicians should and will act in the best interest of the general public and contain the virus; I just think that their work will not be adequately appreciated.