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Docs In the News
This Is How Worried You Should Actually Be About Brain-Eating Amoebas
June 23, 2016
An Ohio teenager died after contracting a brain-eating amoeba during a trip to a North Carolina water park. She died on June 19 of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM), a rare infection of the brain caused by the amoeba Naegleria fowleri. We hear more about PAM in the summer because more people are going in freshwater lakes and rivers—where Naegleria fowleri lives—and the amoeba thrives in warm weather, Richard Watkins, M.D., an infectious-disease specialist at Cleveland Clinic Akron General, tells SELF. However, you can’t be infected with Naegleria fowleri by drinking contaminated water or swimming in salt water or an adequately chlorinated pool, Watkins says.
Yes, You Can Actually Die From The Flu
April 22, 2016
Speculation about Prince's cause of death has left people wondering whether the flu can be fatal for otherwise healthy adults. Can you actually die from the flu? Experts say yes. “It’s rare but it still happens,” Richard Watkins, M.D., an infectious-disease specialist at Cleveland Clinic Akron General Hospital in Ohio, tells SELF. “Sometimes people who die have underlying health conditions that leave them compromised, but that’s not always the case.”
Elizabethkingia: What You Need To Know About The Current Outbreak
April 14, 2016
A deadly bacteria infection is making its way through several Midwest states—and officials have no idea what's causing it. Rick Watkins, M.D., an infectious disease specialist at Cleveland Clinic Akron General Medical Center, tells SELF that it’s unknown how this outbreak is being spread but notes that it’s not person-to-person.
Super Lice Are Taking Over the Country. Should You Be Worried?
March 1, 2016
Heads up: A strain of head lice that is resistant to over-the-counter medication has cropped up in 25 states. Dubbed “super lice,” these pesky pests act like regular lice – they’re parasites that live in human hair, eyelashes, and eyebrows. Children are the most at risk of contracting super lice, but Richard Watkins, M.D., an infectious disease specialist at Cleveland Clinic Akron General in Ohio says adults can contract the parasites, too.
Akron Beacon Journal
Zika virus comes to Ohio by way of Haiti
February 9, 2016
About 80 percent of people who contract Zika have no symptoms, which can include a fever, rash and joint pain, said Dr. Richard Watkins, an infectious disease physician with Cleveland Clinic Akron General. Yet Zika could be doing irreparable harm in pregnant women.