Avoid driv­ing dur­ing flood warn­ing

Daily Trust - - HEALTH -

f the Na­tional Weather Ser­vice in your area has is­sued a flood warn­ing, ex­perts say you should avoid driv­ing un­less ab­so­lutely nec­es­sary.

The Ready.gov web­site of­fers this ad­vice about driv­ing dur­ing a flood:

Driv­ing in just 6 inches of wa­ter can cause the car to stall, and wa­ter can be­gin to seep into the car.

A foot of wa­ter on the road will cause many ve­hi­cles to float.

Two feet of rush­ing flood wa­ter is enough to carry even pickup trucks and SUVs.

If you see a road that is flooded, do not at­tempt to drive on it. Never drive through a bar­ri­cade. Fol­low des­ig­nated evac­u­a­tion routes and do not try to take a short­cut.

Years later, people who were un­der­weight at birth, and those who were breast-fed only a short time or not at all, could be at in­creased risk for chronic in­flam­ma­tion and re­lated health prob­lems, a new study sug­gests.

Re­searchers ex­am­ined health data from 10,500 Amer­i­can adults and found that those with low birth weight and those who had lit­tle or no breast-feed­ing had higher lev­els of C-re­ac­tive protein (CRP), an in­di­ca­tor of in­flam­ma­tion.

Chronic in­flam­ma­tion is as­so­ci­ated with health risks such as di­a­betes and heart at­tack, the study au­thors noted.

The study did not find a cause-and-ef­fect re­la­tion­ship, how­ever.

The re­searchers ex­plained that it can be dif­fi­cult to de­ter­mine how birth weight and breast-feed­ing af­fect long-term health be­cause these prob­lems are more com­mon among chil­dren whose par­ents have lower lev­els of ed­u­ca­tion and in­come. This means it’s un­clear if other fac­tors play a role.

But this study in­cluded a large num­ber of sib­lings and the re­searchers found that even within the same fam­ily, birth weight and breast-feed­ing in­flu­enced the risk of in­flam­ma­tion in adult­hood.

The find­ings will be pub­lished in the jour­nal Pro­ceed­ings of the Royal So­ci­ety B.

“There were good rea­sons to hy­poth­e­size that breast-feed­ing was im­por­tant to in­flu­enc­ing lev­els of in­flam­ma­tion in adult­hood,” study au­thor Thomas McDade, a Cana­dian In­sti­tute for Ad­vanced Re­search Fel­low in the child and brain de­vel­op­ment pro­gram at North­west­ern Univer­sity, said in an in­sti­tute news re­lease.

“[Breast-feed­ing] pro­motes de­vel­op­ment of the im­mune sys­tem. Chil­dren who are breast-fed get fewer in­fec­tious dis­eases and are less likely to be­come over­weight,” he noted.

Ton­sil­lec­tomy May Spur Weight Gain in Kids, But Won’t Cause Obe­sity: Study

Some chil­dren gain weight af­ter hav­ing their ton­sils re­moved, but this weight gain is typ­i­cally con­fined to younger, un­der­weight chil­dren and doesn’t seem to add to obe­sity rates, a new study finds.

Each year in the United States, about 500,000 chil­dren have their ton­sils re­moved. In the new study, a team from Stan­ford Univer­sity School of Medicine tracked out­comes for 815 chil­dren who un­der­went ton­sil­lec­tomy.

Over­all, the chil­dren’s weight rose by an aver­age of just over 6 per­cent within 18 months of their surgery and their body mass in­dex (an es­ti­mate of body fat based on height and weight) rose an aver­age of 8 per­cent.

The largest weight in­creases oc­curred in chil­dren who were smaller and younger than age 4 at the time of surgery. Chil­dren older than age 8 gained the least weight, and chil­dren who were al­ready heav­ier be­fore their surgery did not gain weight, ac­cord­ing to the re­searchers.

One ex­pert not con­nected to the study said the find­ings make sense.

“One pos­si­ble in­ter­pre­ta­tion of this clin­i­cal ob­ser­va­tion has been that some chil­dren with sig­nif­i­cant nighttime breath­ing is­sues -- like sleep ap­nea -ac­tu­ally are un­der­weight due to the in­creased work of breath­ing, or due to ob­struc­tive food aver­sions re­lated to the size of the ton­sils,” said Dr. Michael Roth­schild, clin­i­cal pro­fes­sor of oto­laryn­gol­ogy and pe­di­atrics at the Ic­ahn School of Medicine at Mount Si­nai in New York City.

“These chil­dren may move to a more ap­pro­pri­ate weight for their age and height fol­low­ing the surgery with im­proved eat­ing and sleep­ing, while chil­dren who are over­weight might not have the same de­gree of weight gain,” he said.

The study find­ings seem to bear that out -- even though many chil­dren gained weight af­ter ton­sil re­moval, there was only a small in­crease in the num­ber of chil­dren who were obese: 14.5 per­cent be­fore ver­sus 16.3 per­cent af­ter. This sug­gests that ton­sil re­moval is not as­so­ci­ated with higher obe­sity rates, the re­searchers con­cluded.

Two other ex­perts not in­volved in the study said the find­ings may be use­ful for par­ents and physi­cians.

“This study pro­vides help­ful in­for­ma­tion to par­ents try­ing to weigh the risks and ben­e­fits of surgery for their child,” said Dr. Aaron Bernard, clin­i­cal skills di­rec­tor at the Quin­nip­iac Univer­sity School of Medicine in Ham­den, Conn.

Dr. Lisa Lib­er­a­tore, an ear, nose and throat specialist at Lenox Hill Hospi­tal in New York City, agreed. She noted that the study “found that there is an in­crease in weight in some chil­dren af­ter this surgery but it was in those chil­dren who were un­der­weight and, in some cases, not thriv­ing -- this would be a good thing in those chil­dren.”

On the other hand, “in chil­dren who were obese be­fore surgery, there was no gain in weight or no wors­en­ing of their obe­sity,” Lib­er­a­tore said. She be­lieves that “par­ents and physi­cians should not avoid in­di­cated rea­sons for re­moval of the ton­sils and ade­noids for fear of caus­ing obe­sity.”

The study was pub­lished on­line April 17 in JAMA Oto­laryn­gol­ogy--Head & Neck Surgery.

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