Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Environmental Risks, Technology / 13.01.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Krystal Pollitt, PhD, P.Eng. Assistant Professor of Epidemiology (Environmental Health Sciences) Assistant Professor in Chemical and Environmental Engineering Affiliated Faculty, Yale Institute for Global Health Yale School of Public Health  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: People infected with COVID-19 can release SARS-CoV-2 virus in aerosol and droplets when they exhale. This can be from coughing or sneezing but also when they speaker or just breathe. While the larger droplets can settle to the ground quickly (seconds to minutes), smaller aerosol can remain in the air in longer periods (minutes to hours). SARS-CoV-2 can be transmitted by inhaling aerosol or droplets containing infectious virus. The Fresh Air Clip enables detection of droplet and aerosol containing virus. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Pediatrics / 11.01.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Stephen Freedman MDCM, MSc Professor of Pediatrics and Emergency Medicine Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation Professor in Child Health and Wellness Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute, Cumming School of Medicine University of Calgary MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: During the early stages of the global 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, children represented fewer than 5% of reported cases.  However, children now represent a significant percent of all new COVID-19 cases.  Similarly, pediatric hospitalizations due to COVID-19, are now at an all-time high.  Although COVID-19 is generally mild in children, severe outcomes and death do occur.  The risk of severe outcomes among SARS-CoV-2 infected children is poorly understood with estimates varying considerably between study designs, settings, and regions.  Studies generally include large administrative databases (i.e. community based), hospitalized populations, and children admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU). Identified risk factors for severe COVID-19 in children have included young (i.e. 1-3 months) or old (15-18 years) pediatric age group, male sex, and pre-existing medical condition.  However, data from large prospective cohort studies which include children with early or mild stages of disease seeking emergency department (ED) care are lacking. To address this knowledge gap we sought to quantify the frequency of and risk factors for severe outcomes in SARS-CoV-2 infected children enrolled in a prospective ED-based cohort study.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Columbia, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Pediatrics / 06.01.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dani Dumitriu, MD, PhD Assistant Professor of Pediatrics (in Psychiatry) The Sackler Institute for Developmental Psychobiology Columbia University, New York MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: A lot of research has focused on the effects of COVID-19 in various vulnerable populations, such as elderly individuals, immunocompromised patients, and individuals with severe comorbidities. However, one vulnerable population that has remained relatively understudied are the infants exposed to maternal COVID-19 disease during pregnancy. While early on in the pandemic we and other groups showed reassuring data on low risk of vertical transmission, meaning the passing of the virus from mother-to-infant is rare, this does not necessarily mean that these infants wouldn't experience long-term consequences related to the maternal infection through other means. We know from other viral illness that maternal illness, most commonly through the activation of her immune system, can lead to a cascade of events that affect fetal development. This is why a large number of physicians and researchers at Columbia University spearheaded the COVID-19 Mother Baby Outcomes (COMBO) Initiative -- to look at potential long-term health effects on both infants and mothers. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Critical Care - Intensive Care - ICUs / 26.12.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Toon Mostien Jessa Hospital, Hasselt, Belgium MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study Response: Patients with COVID-19 that survive critical illness are confronted with months or even years of physical impairments. Moreover, literature indicates that possibly up to 68% can still suffer from musculoskeletal symptoms such as muscle pain and weakness after infection with SARS-CoV-2. Although we have focused on 7-day differences in muscle fiber type characteristics, this research is a first step in discovering if skeletal muscles of critically ill patients are more severely damaged compared to a more general ICU population. Cytokine storm and systemic inflammatory responses triggered by the infection could augment muscle damage beyond that of non-COVID ICU patients. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Dental Research / 09.12.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Henry Daniell Ph.D W. D. Miller Professor & Director of Translational Research, Vice Chair, Department of Basic and Translational Sciences, Editor in Chief, Plant Biotechnology Journal, Oxford, UK School of Dental Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia PA 19104-6030  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study Response: ACE2 is a human protein present in human cells, blood and saliva.  In COVID-19 patients this protein is inactivated.  SARS-CoV-2 virus enters human cells using receptor of this protein.  ACE2 chewing gum utilizes two different mechanisms.  ACE2 enzyme directly binds to the spike protein on SARS-CoV-2 and traps virus in the chewing gum.  In addition, ACE2 enzyme binds to its own receptor on oral epithelial cells, thereby blocks entry of any virus that is not trapped in the chewing gum (more…)
Author Interviews / 25.11.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ariel Israel, M.D., Ph.D. Director, Leumit Health Services Tel Aviv, Israel  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: As a research institute of Leumit, one of the four state mandated health funds in Israel, we pursue research projects aimed at improving the health of our members, and  reducing the burden of disease. For this purpose, we harness the unique resource of the electronic health records of our members, that is available in a central data warehouse for research purposes. Israel was one of the first countries to roll-out a large-scale vaccination campaign, and to achieve control of the pandemics through vaccination. Nevertheless, since the middle of June '21, we have observed a gradual increase in the rate of COVID-19 infections among our members, even among the vaccinated. This increase was first believed to be due to the emergence of the delta strain, but when we compared vaccinated individuals who suffered from breakthrough infections to other vaccinated individuals, we found that the time that has elapsed since vaccination was significantly longer for individuals who got infected with COVID-19, in  each of the age groups. This prompted us to investigate the issue of a possible waning effect of the vaccine protection with time, that we present in this report, using the test negative study design. We examined the electronic health records for 80,057 adults (average age 44 years) who received a PCR test at least three weeks after their second injection, and had no evidence of previous covid-19 infection. Of these 80,057 participants, 7,973 (9.6%) had a positive test result. These individuals were then matched to negative controls of the same age and ethnic group who were tested in the same week. (more…)
Author Interviews, CDC, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Vaccine Studies / 02.11.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Catherine H. Bozio, PhD MPH Epidemiologist Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We wanted to understand what protection previous infection with SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) and COVID-19 vaccination can provide. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cognitive Issues, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Occupational Health / 24.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jacqueline H. Becker, Ph.D. Clinical Neuropsychologist Associate Scientist Division of General Internal Medicine Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: This study leverages data being collected through the ongoing Mount Sinai Health System Post-COVID-19 Registry, which is led by Dr. Juan Wisnivesky, Professor of Medicine and Chief of the Division of General Internal Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and senior author of the study. Our study concluded that there may be long-term cognitive repercussions from COVID-19 that impact individuals in various age groups and across the spectrum of disease severity, although the frequency of cognitive impairment was highest among patients who were previously hospitalized for COVID-19.  (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA / 22.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Destin Groff, BA Ashley Sun BA Department of Surgery and Paddy Ssentongo MD PhD Department of Public Health Sciences Center for Neural Engineering Department of Engineering, Science and Mechanics The Pennsylvania State University, State College Penn State College of Medicine and Milton S. Hershey Medical Center Hershey, Pennsylvania  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Most people who get sick from COVID-19 will survive. However, the burden of long-term consequences among the survivors is not well-characterized. That is what inspired this study.  MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings? Response: After compiling data from 57 studies involving 250,351 unvaccinated individuals, our study shows that more than half of those worldwide who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 experience six months after recovering. The most common sequelae involve functional mobility impairments, pulmonary abnormalities, and mental health disorders, including memory deficits, concentration difficulty, post-traumatic stress disorders, depression, and anxiety. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Statins / 22.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Rita Bergqvis Department of Global Public Health Karolinska Institutet Stockholm, Sweden MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: There is a theoretical background for the discussion regarding statins in relation to COVID. Hyperinflammation and hypercoagulability have been identified as central to the development of severe COVID and COVID related complications. Hence, drugs that modulate the host immune response and inhibit thrombosis and vascular dysfunction have received a lot of attention. Statins are known to have pleiotropic effects; apart from their cholesterol lowering properties they are thought to modulate immune system processes and decrease the risk of thrombotic events. Previous observational studies on statins and COVID had some major methodological limitations and showed varying results. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Dermatology, Respiratory / 06.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lara van der Schoot  MD, PhD candidate Department of Dermatology Radboud University Medical Center Nijmegen, The Netherlands MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Psoriasis is a chronic, immune mediated skin disease for which effective targeted biological agents have become available the past years. Inherent to their immunomodulatory mechanism of action, biologics might increase infections risk. We know from clinical trial data that respiratory tract infections are among the most common adverse events during biologic treatment, but real-world data is sparse. Regarding the risk of serious infections among biologic users, mostly defined as infections requiring hospitalization, previous studies provided different results and there is limited comparative data for the newer biologics available. The COVID-19 pandemic turned attention to the risk of infections among biologic users, especially for respiratory tract infections, as they might relate to susceptibility for viral respiratory tract infections such as COVID-19. In our study, the primary aim was to determine the risk of respiratory tract infections among real-world psoriasis patients treated with biologics, including the newer IL-17 and IL-23 inhibitors. The secondary aim was to assess risk of serious infections in this cohort. Additionally, rates of SARS-CoV-2 infections were assessed. (more…)
Author Interviews, CDC, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Vaccine Studies / 30.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Anne Hause PhD Epidemiologist Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: On August 12, 2021, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) amended Emergency Use Authorizations (EUA) for the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines to authorize administration of an additional dose following completion of a primary vaccination series to eligible persons with moderate to severe immunocompromise.  (more…)
Author Interviews, CMAJ, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Pediatrics / 27.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Shaun K. Morris MD, MPH, FRCPC, FAAP, DTM&H Divisions of General Pediatrics Clinician-Scientist, Division of Infectious Diseases Division of Infectious Diseases at the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) for the Canadian Paediatric Surveillance Program COVID-19 Study Team MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The SARS-CoV-2 virus can cause the disease we now call COVID-19. In early 2020, when the SARS-CoV-2 virus first spread outside of China, it quickly became apparent that cases may be seen in Canada. It was not known at the time how infection with the virus would affect children and youth. Because more severe disease from other respiratory viruses often disproportionally affect the very young, we expected that a similar pattern may be seen with SARS-CoV-2. We also did not know if children and youth with certain underlying medical conditions may be at higher risk for more severe disease. Ultimately, this study was designed to get a better understanding of how often children and youth in Canada are hospitalized with SARS-CoV-2 infection, how often severe disease happens, and which children or youth may be at higher risk for severe disease.      (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Vaccine Studies / 03.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jeffrey M. Wilson MD Assistant Professor of Medicine Allergy and Immunology University of Virginia MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: To date there have been few head-to-head studies evaluating the immune responses to COVID-19 vaccines. Here we measured IgG antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 spike-RBD in adults who received full vaccination with either the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine. Our study is distinguished from many others because we developed a quantitative test with a read-out in standardized units (expressed as micrograms/mL). We found that antibody levels to the SARS-CoV-2 spike receptor-binding domain were lower in recipients of the Pfizer/BioNTech than Moderna vaccine. The difference in the antibody levels between vaccines was most evident in relatively older subjects. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Vaccine Studies / 02.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: David H. Canaday, MD Associate Director of Research Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center (GRECC),  Cleveland VA Professor, Division of Infectious Disease, Case Western Reserve University Cleveland, Ohio MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We were interested in following up on a prior study where we determined that nursing home residents, and in particular those that were given the Pfizer shot who never had COVID-19 in the past, had 4 fold less antibodies against the key Spike protein of the coronavirus than did the group of health care workers who were the other group studied. We wanted to see how those antibodies levels in these groups held up over 6 months.  (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Occupational Health, Weight Research / 01.08.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: https://www.newtopia.com/Jeff Ruby, JD, MBA, Founder and Chief Executive Officer Leonard Fensterheim, MPH Vice President of Analytics MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are common weight-change findings during the pandemic?  Obesity has been linked to increased risk of serious complications and the need for costly medical utilization – all of which has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. There has been an increase of imposed restrictions that impact healthy lifestyles – the closing of gyms as an example – leading to additional stress and the complete disruption of daily lives. It’s no surprise that many people have gained weight since the beginning of the pandemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), before the pandemic, about 40% of Americans had obesity in the United States. This was already an alarming figure, but given that the American Psychological Association found that 42% of U.S. adults report undesired weight gain, with an average gain of 29 lbs. since the start of the pandemic, we expect that percentage has continued to grow. Against this backdrop, Newtopia sought to evaluate the impact of a guided habit change program on weight loss for 12 months during the COVID-19 pandemic. Method:
  • This was a retrospective study that looked at 1436 participants who began participating in the Newtopia experience in early 2020.
  • This analysis focused on weight change and was restricted to those participants with a body mass index >
  • 52% of participants were female, and the average age of the total study population was 46.5 years old (±10.6).
  • The percentage of participants with a 4.3% weight reduction after 12 months was assessed. This has been shown to be associated with meaningful reduction in healthcare costs.
  • The average weight loss and the percentage BMI decrease was also assessed.
  Outcomes:
  • 77% of participants lost weight.
  • 44% of participants had a weight loss of >3%.
  • Average weight loss was 4.2% (p<.0001).
  • 22% of obese participants dropped a BMI category.
Despite the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, individuals participating in the Newtopia habit change experience still achieved impactful weight loss. (more…)
Allergies, Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Vaccine Studies, Vanderbilt / 27.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Kimberly G. Blumenthal, MD, MSc Massachusetts General Hospital The Mongan Institute Boston, MA 02114 Matthew S. Krantz, MD Division of Allergy, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: During the initial COVID-19 vaccine campaign with healthcare workers in December 2020, there was an unexpected higher than anticipated rate of immediate allergic reactions after Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccines.  This prompted both patient and provider concerns, particularly in those with underlying allergic histories, on the associated risks for immediate allergic reactions with the mRNA vaccines. Because of the significantly improved effectiveness of two doses of an mRNA vaccine compared to one dose, it was important to determine if those who experienced immediate allergic reaction symptoms after their first dose could go on to tolerate a second dose safely.    (more…)
Author Interviews, CDC, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Heart Disease, JAMA, UCSD / 01.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Margaret Ryan MD MPH Medical Director of Defense Health Agency Immunization Healthcare Division Pacific Region Office, San Diego CA Clinical Professor at the University of California San Diego MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Military clinicians, especially those in the Defense Health Agency Immunization Healthcare Division, first became aware of a few cases of myocarditis following COVID-19 vaccination in early Feb 2021.  These cases included young men who presented with chest pain a few days after 2nd dose of mRNA (Pfizer or Moderna) vaccine.  As more young people became eligible for 2nd doses of vaccine, more cases were identified.  By late April, the military had identified 23 cases of myocarditis, with remarkably similar presentations, after COVID-19 vaccination.  This case series is described in the current issue of JAMA Cardiology. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Environmental Risks / 30.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Els M. Broens DVM, PhD, Dipl. ECVM, EBVS European Veteirnary Specialist in Veterinary Microbiology Associate Professor / Director VMDC Department Biomolecular Health Sciences (Clinical Infectiology) Faculty of Veterinary Medicine | Utrecht University MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Several events have demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 can infect animals, felines and mustelids in particular. In companion animals these are currently considered to be incidents with a negligible risk for public health since the main force of the pandemic is transmission between humans. However, it is urgent to understand the potential risk of animal infections for public health in the later stages of the pandemic when SARS-CoV-2 transmission between humans is greatly reduced and a virus reservoir in animals could become more important. Incidental cases have shown that COVID-19 positive owners can transmit SARS-CoV-2 to their dog or cat. The close contact between owners and their dogs and cats and the interaction between dogs and cats from different households raises questions about the risk for pets to contract the disease and also about role of these animals in the transmission of SARS-CoV-2. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Vaccine Studies / 22.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Boby Varkey Maramattom MD,DM, FRCP, FRCPE Fellow in Critical care neurology (Mayo Clinic) Lead Consultant Neurologist Aster Medcity, Kochi, Kerala Associate Director- Clinical Research Centre, Aster Medcity. Convener, Neurocritical care subsection Indian academy of Neurology  (IAN) MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response:  Approximately 2-3 months after the vaccination programme commenced in India, we began to notice an uptick in the incidence of Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS) in our community. All the cases that presented to us during this period had almost the same clinical presentation. They presented within a few days ( usually within 1-2 weeks) of the first dose of the ChAdOx1-S/nCoV-19 vaccine. Most of the patients were women and it seemed to involve the middle aged to elderly age groups. As a result of this observation, we started to compile the clinical findings of these patients and collate them. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections / 22.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Rafael Kroon Campos PhD Department of Microbiology and Immunology University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston, TX MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting millions of people. COVID-19 is a disease that primarily affects the lungs, but it also affects other organs and tissues, including heart and olfactory receptors. There is a growing body of evidence showing that COVID-19 can affect reproductive health by reducing androgen hormones, sperm counts and causing pain and discomfort in the testes. The virus that causes this disease is named severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). It is unknown whether these symptoms are caused by direct virus testes infection or a byproduct of the immune system fighting the virus. (more…)
COVID -19 Coronavirus / 15.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jonathan Baktari, MD CEO of e7health.com Dr. Baktari, CEO discusses the COVID-19 Delta COVID-19 variant and his insights into pandemic concerns and control. MedicalResearch.com: What is meant by the 'Delta' variant?  Are there differences in the clinical presentation or complications?  Response: Variants are now given Greek lettering for everyone and the Delta variant represents the variant from India. Pulmonary reports indicate it is much more contagious and there are reports of increased hospitalization with this variant.  MedicalResearch.com: Where is the variant currently found and where is it likely to spread? Response: Obviously India, but it has taken over as the dominant strain in England and it is about 6% of the strains in the United states and growing. (more…)
Author Interviews, CDC, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Pediatrics / 11.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Angela P. Campbell, MD, MPH Medical Officer Epidemiology and Prevention Branch in the Influenza Division MIS-C Incidence Authorship Group CDC MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?
  • Response: Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is a serious condition associated with COVID-19 where different body parts can become inflamed, including the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes, and gastrointestinal organs. Children with MIS-C may have a fever and various symptoms, including abdominal (gut) pain, vomiting, diarrhea, neck pain, rash, bloodshot eyes, or feeling extra tired. Not all children with MIS-C have the same symptoms.
  • It is still not known exactly how MIS-C may be linked to prior COVID-19 infection. However, 99% of cases in the CDC national surveillance system tested positive for COVID-19. The remaining 1% were around someone with COVID-19.
  • MIS-C incidence might vary by certain patient characteristics, such as such as race, ethnicity, age, sex and geographic location.
  • In this study we estimated the rate of MIS-C cases overall in the general population as well as the rate of MIS-C cases among those with COVID-19.
(more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Johns Hopkins, Nutrition / 04.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Hyunju Kim Ph.D. Johns Hopkins School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: In the past few months, we have learnt that individuals with comorbidities (obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension) are at higher risk of Covid-19. The etiology of these conditions is largely driven by poor nutrition and unfavorable lifestyle choices, yet no study examined whether dietary habits play a role in Covid-19 infection, severity of symptoms, and duration of illness. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Sleep Disorders, Technology / 03.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Michele Ferrara, PhD. Professor of Psychobiology and Physiological Psychology Chair of the Psychology Didactic Council Department of Biotechnological and Applied Clinical Sciences University of L'Aquila MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: During the current period of social distancing, the pervasive increase in the use of electronic devices (smartphones, computers, tablets and televisions) is an indisputable fact. Especially during the long lockdown period of Spring 2020, technologies played a pivotal role in coping with the unprecedented and stressful isolation phase. However, exposure to backlit screens in the hours before falling asleep can have serious repercussions on sleep health: on the one hand, by mimicking the effects of exposure to sunlight, and thus interfering with the circadian rhythm of the hormone melatonin, and on the other hand, counteracting the evening sleepiness due to the emotionally and psycho-physiologically activating contents. In light of this assumption, we decided to test longitudinally during the third and the seventh week of lockdown a large Italian sample (2123 subjects) through a web-based survey. We assessed sleep disturbances/habits and the occurring changes of electronic device usage in the 2 hours before the sleep onset. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Vaccine Studies / 23.05.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jonathan Baktari, MD CEO of e7health.com Dr. Baktari dicusses COVID-19 vaccinations as well as the nine vaccinated New York Yankees have now tested positive for COVID-19.  They all received the J&J vaccine. MedicalResearch.com:  There are nine known COVID positive results among members of the Yankees, previously immunized with the J&J vaccine.  Do you know if the players have become ill or just tested positive on routine testing? Response: Only 1 out of the 9 was mildly symptomatic and were all picked up as part of MLB testing protocol. MedicalResearch.com: Do you know how long after they were vaccinated that they tested positive?  Do you know of other incidences of positive reactions after vaccinations?  Response: According to MLB, all players tested positive after receiving the J&J vaccine.  All were at least 14 days after the vaccine was administered.  The 14 days post vaccination is when J&J is supposed to be effective in preventing serious illness and death. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Heart Disease, JACC, Social Issues / 12.05.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Kobina Hagan MBBS, MPH Postdoctoral Fellow Center for Outcomes Research, Houston Methodist Research Institute MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Before the COVID-19 vaccination roll-out, risk mitigation guidelines including respiratory hygiene, social distancing, and job flexibility, were the most effective preventive measures against coronavirus transmission. Social determinants of health scholarships had identified social circumstances to limit adherence to these mitigation guidelines. Individuals with underlying cardiovascular disease are identified as high-risk phenotypes for severe COVID-19 outcomes. In addition, research efforts during the early and middle waves of the pandemic had identified coronavirus exposure risk as a greater mediator of the observed COVID-19 disparities, compared to clinical susceptibility from comorbidities. Yet, population-based evidence on the practice of these mitigation guidelines in this high-risk group were lacking. Consequently, we believed there was a need to robustly characterize COVID-19 risk mitigation practices among adults with cardiovascular disease in the nation. The COVID-19 Household Impact Survey was a survey conducted by the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago, to provide statistics about health, economic security, and social dynamics of the US adult household population nationwide and for 18 geographic areas (10 states, 8 metropolitan statistical areas) between April and June 2020. This survey complemented the Household Pulse Survey by the Census Bureau. In this study we described the COVID-19 risk mitigation practices among patients with CVD and evaluated the association between cumulative social determinants of health burden (a measure of social adversity) and adherence these measures.  (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Dermatology / 11.05.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Monisha Madhumita Father Muller Medical College India MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? hand-washing-eczema-dermatologyResponse: The COVID‐19 pandemic requires stringent adoption of hand hygiene practices. Health Care Workers (HCW) and the general population are at increased risk of irritation, dryness, redness and cracked hands (irritant dermatitis) due to frequent hand washing and the use of alcohol-based hand rubs. An effective hand sanitizer contains at least 60% alcohol to kill germs. Thus, it can be very drying to the skin. Transepidermal water loss (TEWL) is a way to measure the water lost from the skin. It is an essential parameter for characterizing skin hydration and protective function. Both of which are disrupted in irritant hand dermatitis. This research study was conducted on 582 participants: 291 health care workers and 291 healthy individuals of the general population. Measurements of TEWL were made using a noninvasive, closed- chamber system (VapoMeter) in a standardized environment. The study participants were asked to identify the challenges to compliance in hand hygiene practice (more…)
Asthma, Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 09.05.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Justin Salciccioli, MBBS, MA Research Fellow in Medicine Elliot Israel, MD Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School Pulmonary and Critical CareRheumatologyMedicine Brigham and Women's Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Asthma attacks account for almost 50% of the cost of asthma care, which costs $80 billion each year in the United States. Asthma is more severe in African-American/Black and Hispanic/Latinx patients, with these groups having double the rates of attacks and hospitalizations as the general population. The PREPARE study is an ongoing national clinical trial for African American/Black and Hispanic/Latinx adults with moderate-to-severe asthma from different U.S. cities in which reporting of asthma control and asthma exacerbations was monitored entirely remotely. With the arrival of the Covid19 pandemic, several studies suggested that asthma exacerbations may have decreased during the pandemic. However, multiple reports have suggested people were avoiding health services because of the pandemic, making it difficult to tell whether exacerbations truly decreased or whether people were simply avoiding their doctors. This is the first study done to assess asthma exacerbations before and during the pandemic that is unlikely to be impacted by patient healthcare avoidance. (more…)
Author Interviews, Columbia, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Depression, Mental Health Research, PTSD / 07.05.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: João Mauricio Castaldelli-Maia, MD, PhD (he/him) NIDA INVEST Drug Abuse Research Fellow Policy and Health Initiatives on Opioids and Other Substances (PHIOS) Department of Epidemiology Mailman School of Public Health Columbia University New York, NY 10032 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response:     It remains unclear whether COVID-19 is associated with psychiatric symptoms during or after the acute illness phase. Being affected by the disease exposes the individual to an uncertain prognosis and a state of quarantine. These factors can predispose individuals to the development of mental symptoms during or after the acute phase of the disease. There is a need for prospective studies assessing psychiatric symptoms in COVID-19 patients in the post-infection period. (more…)