Are Backpacks Dangerous?
Parents worry that overloaded backpacks may be harmful to their children. The Doctors say that backpacks are only dangerous if used improperly. Dr. Sears suggests roller bags to minimize back injuries, but if that’s not possible, make sure that the backpacks do not weigh more than 15 percent of your child’s weight.
Chicken Pox Parties
Chicken pox parties are popping up around the country. Parents are purposefully exposing their children to the virus in an attempt to avoid the chicken pox vaccination, which some believe is more harmful than the virus itself. Dr. Sears cautions that there’s a potential for harm in contracting the virus, and Dr. Lisa advocates for the vaccine. Dr. Travis explains that the varicella virus (chicken pox) lives in your nerve cells forever and can reactivate as shingles as an adult.
When Does Food Go Bad?
To toss or not to toss, that is the question. When do leftovers become trash? Food left out for more than four hours at temperatures greater than 40 degrees will start to go bad. The Doctors chime in unison, “When in doubt, throw it out!”
Natural Orifice Surgery
Next, one of the most common digestive disorders people face is gallbladder disease. More than half a million people have their gallbladder removed each year. Twenty-six-year-old Amy has suffered from gallbladder problems since she was 10 years old. She opted to have her gallbladder removed through her vagina with a cutting-edge technique called Natural Orifice Surgery and The Doctors' cameras were in the operating room for the entire procedure.
Natural Orifice Surgery is a highly experimental surgical technique that inserts endoscopic tools through the body’s orifices to reach a target organ and remove it. Dr. Mark Talamini and Dr. Santiago Horgan, the doctors who performed Amy’s surgery, join her onstage to detail the procedure. Dr. Horgan demonstrates the endoscopic instruments and explains that the minimally invasive technique is still gaining ground in the surgical community, but may advance medicine as we know it.
High Cholesterol in Children
As the incidence of childhood obesity reaches epidemic proportions, an astonishing number of children as young as 8 years old are on medication to control their high cholesterol. But how young is too young to start children on a lifetime of medications? The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends testing children for cholesterol as early as age two.
Eleven-year-old Austin’s cholesterol levels are off the charts and his mother, Regina, is desperate for help. Dr. Sears and Dr. Travis explain the importance of the right kind of cholesterol, and the dangers of the wrong kind of cholesterol. Dr. Sears tests Austin’s cholesterol and gives Regina and Austin tips on how to change their lifestyle and nutritional intake.
Dr. Beatrice Golomb is an Associate Professor of Medicine at University of California, San Diego who researches statins (medicine that lowers cholesterol). She is not convinced that the benefits of statins exceed the harm. Dr. Alan Lewis is a Pediatric Cardiologist at Children’s Hospital, Los Angeles who believes in using statins with children only as a last resort. He believes that the benefits of the drugs outweigh the risks. The doctors debate their differing views.