What to Do if it Happens to You!

Are you prepared for life's eminent health obstacles? The Doctors explain what you can do to keep common health problems from happening to you!

Deep Vein Thrombosis

Prevent DVT

March is DVT Awareness Month. Melanie Bloom, national patient spokesperson for the Coalition to Prevent DVT, lost her husband, David, a famed NBC correspondent, to complications from DVT while he was embedded with troops in Iraq. Melanie explains the risk factors of DVT and what you can do to prevent it.


When sportscaster Bonnie Bernstein began experiencing pain in her leg, she didn't think much of it. "I've been an athlete my whole life, so I just thought it was a muscle pull," she says. "So what do you do when you have a muscle pull? You take some ibuprofen, you ice it, you take it easy for a couple days, and you expect it to go away."

The pain persisted for a week, and Bonnie began having trouble breathing. "It finally dawned on me [that] this is probably not a pulled muscle," she says.

After waking up with extreme swelling and redness around her knee, Bonnie went to the hospital and was diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis (DVT).

Tennis star Serena Williams was reportedly hospitalized after suffering a pulmonary embolism, a blood clot in the lungs.

Approximately 2 million Americans are diagnosed annually with DVT, with more people dying from complications of DVT than breast cancer and AIDS combined. The condition occurs when a blood clot develops in a deep vein, usually in the leg. Typically, a clot travels from the leg to the lungs and blocks blood from entering other parts of the body, causing breathing trouble and fatigue. When left untreated, clots can travel into the heart and cause it to fail, resulting in death.

Bonnie and E.R. physician Dr. Travis Stork demonstrate how DVT develops, the risk factors to look out for and treatment options.

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Blood Clot Warning Signs

• Sudden shortness of breath
Leg swelling
Bloody cough
Chest pains that often mimic a heart attack
Redness over the affected area

Preventing Blood Clots
Stand up and walk during long plane and car rides
Drink plenty of water
Wear support stockings

Pregnancy Problems
Mario and Megan are one of the many couples who struggle to conceive every year. They have been trying to have a baby since they were married two years ago, but Megan has not become pregnant.

Baby Mix-Up

Carolyn carried baby Logan for nine months despite the fact he was another couple's biological child. Find out how she and her husband, Sean, handled the in-vitro mix-up, and how Logan is doing now.

Check out Carolyn and Sean's book, Inconceivable

"I'm not quite 30 yet, and I feel like I shouldn't be having these problems," she says. "I'm starting to get concerned that there's something else going on. Is it a problem with me? Is it him? Is it both of us?"

Fertility, IVF and ZIFT specialist Dr. John Jain performs common fertility tests on Mario and Megan. OB/GYN Dr. Lisa Masterson reveals their results, why they may be having trouble and how to increase their odds of getting pregnant.

Dr. Lisa says that if a woman under the age of 35, who does not have underlying medical conditions, struggles to get pregnant, she should keep track of her ovulation.

"Ovulation is one of the keys to getting pregnant," Dr. Lisa says. "Really, you only have 12 chances a year to get pregnant, and that's when you ovulate."

Simple Ways to Track Ovulation

Gag Reflex

In September, The Doctors surprised Nykki, one of their biggest fans, by calling her during the show and inviting her and her daughter, Kylee, to a future taping. Mother and daughter join the show, and pediatrician Dr. Jim Sears answers Nykki's questions about 3-year-old Kylee's sensitive gag reflex.

Use a calendar to plot out your periods.
Use ovulation beads.
Use an ovulation kit.
Use a basal thermometer to monitor your temperature during ovulation.

"It's really important to talk to your doctor ahead of time about your periods, about your medical conditions," Dr. Lisa says. "Planning is really the key."

Get great tips for maintaining a healthy pregnancy.
Foods you should — and shouldn't — eat when expecting.

Speech Development
Georgia, 55, is worried that her 4-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Angela, has speech problems. She often mumbles or speaks very loudly and has trouble with certain letters, such as "R."

Dr. Sears takes Angela and Georgia to a speech pathologist to determine what's causing her condition.



Dr. Sears reveals the results of Angela's tests, and when to worry about speech development.


BLOG: Dr. Sears' Tips to Help Children Develop Language Skills
Your child's speech and language development is one of the cutest parts of growing up. When they are young, they come up with so many funny, endearing "versions" of words. I love to watch old videos of one of my kids using the word "DREEEN" to describe the color green! While this toddler talk is adorable, you also want to be sure to do everything you can to be sure his or her development is normal and he or she eventually learns to speak correctly!  In addition to the tips I gave on the show today, here are a few other things to try:
• Beginning in infancy, introduce new vocabulary in a meaningful context, e.g., name specific foods at dinner time, "here is a BANANA".
Read books and sing songs to your child on a daily basis.
Narrate what you are doing, speaking directly to your child. Ask him or her questions, and give him or her time to respond. For this you'll need to be patient.
Resist the temptation to use baby language. Your child needs to hear the CORRECT pronunciation of a word to eventually get it right.  
Avoid finishing sentences for your child. Give him or her time to think about what he or she is trying to say.

For more info on speech development, visit the American-Speech-Language-Hearing Association's website at http://www.asha.org/public/speech/development/parent-stim-activities.htm

-Dr Sears

Crystal, 25, has fainted on multiple occasions. Fainting, or syncope, is the temporary loss of consciousness. A common cause is vasovagal syncope, a transitory drop in blood pressure. The brain doesn't receive enough blood or oxygen and, subsequently, loses consciousness. Always tell your doctor if you have suffered any fainting spells, as loss of consciousness can also indicate cardiac problems.

Ward Off Wrinkles

Worried about worry lines? Plastic surgeon Dr. Drew Ordon reveals what to look for in skin-care products to ward off worrisome wrinkles.

More anti-aging tips!

Causes of Fainting

Standing up too fast
Exertion in hot weather
Low blood sugar
Being emotionally upset
Anxiety or panic disorders
Cardiac disease
Certain medications

Signs of Impending Loss of Consciousness

Blurred vision
Seeing spots or specks in front of eyes
Body pallor or pale appearance
Dilated pupils
Rapid respiration

Crystal visits cardiologist Dr. John Kennedy to find out what's causing her to faint.

Dr. Travis offers vital tips if you find yourself feeling faint, or see someone else lose consciousness:
Lie the person down to avoid any trauma related to a fall.
Raise legs to improve blood flow back to the heart and brain.
Check for pulse and breathing.
Call 911.


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OAD 3/2/11