What U.S. doctors wish they had known before the coronavirus outbreak

(Reuters) - 'What I did not recognize was the severity of illness that would be seen in patients who are older and the rapidity with which this illness would spread through elderly populations.' As signs indicate the curve of new cases may be starting to flatten, doctors in the United States shared with Reuters what they wish they had known before the coronavirus outbreak began. Dr.

Reuters April 24, 2020 00:11:28 IST
What U.S. doctors wish they had known before the coronavirus outbreak

What US doctors wish they had known before the coronavirus outbreak

(Reuters) - "What I did not recognize was the severity of illness that would be seen in patients who are older and the rapidity with which this illness would spread through elderly populations."

As signs indicate the curve of new cases may be starting to flatten, doctors in the United States shared with Reuters what they wish they had known before the coronavirus outbreak began.

Dr. Anju Goel, an internal medicine specialist in California, said that had practitioners understood how severely the respiratory disease COVID-19 would affect the elderly, more could have been done to protect them from exposure and get them early treatment.

Across the country in New York, the epicenter of the U.S. outbreak, Mount Sinai Hospital Emergency Department Director Dr. Jolion McGreevy said doctors had learned that some patients benefited from not being immediately intubated, even if their oxygen levels were low.

Others responded well to changing their position every half an hour, he said.

"The sickest of the sick still need to be intubated and that's just the way it is. But there's a larger in-term group that we really didn't understand."

Flipping patients onto their front allowed the lungs "to open and expand and give better oxygenation," agreed Dr. Jennifer Haythe, an internist and critical care cardiologist at Columbia University Medical Center. But she said she believed that ventilators were essential.

"If you want to give them a shot at survival, you put a breathing tube in."

If hospitals had had better warning, they could have been better prepared with the necessary protective equipment, she added.

"We all wished, for the sake of people, that we had recognized that this was coming earlier ... probably could have prevented a lot of the mass amounts of people that came in all at once."

(Writing by Rosalba O'Brien; Editing by Peter Cooney)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.