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The Top 10 Most Popular Posts of the Year

by James Hubbard, MD, MPH Thank you to for making 2014 another record year for The Survival Doctor. Compared to 2013 our viewership was up by over 10 percent (around 4.5 million visits total). And not surprisingly, our number one most-viewed post remained the same. Otherwise, the most popular posts really ran the gamut—earwax removal and fast heart rates, children’s rashes and knee injuries, eyelid infections and finger infections. What about you? Did you learn anything new from any of them? Or perhaps they helped refresh your knowledge a bit? Which did you find the most interesting? […]

By | December 29th, 2014|General|1 Comment

Ye Olde Childhood Rashes Chart: Quick-Reference for Today’s Outbreaks

This is the first in my series of childhood-illness charts. See more here. by James Hubbard, MD, MPH Unless you’re of a certain age, you may have never seen some of the diseases in the chart on the next page. Join the crowd; many younger doctors haven’t either. Measles and rubella, which used to be so common, have been close to wiped out in the U.S. Chickenpox cases have come down to an estimated 80 percent of what they were in the 1990s. (Scarlet fever cases have remained about the same, but they’re still pretty rare compared with fifth disease and roseola.) So why should you care about them? The words “close to” are key. […]

By | July 28th, 2014|Children, Infectious Disease|16 Comments

7 Measles FAQs: What You Need to Know

Typical measles rash. (Click to zoom.) Usually starts on the face three to five days after symptoms begin. Travels down the body. by James Hubbard, MD, MPH One of the worst U.S. measles outbreaks in years is going on in Ohio. So far, around 70 people have been infected. Another outbreak, in California, has involved about 60 people. Though the measles is considered essentially eradicated in the U.S., there are a few cases here every year. This is a big year for them though, with 187 cases nationwide as of May 9, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. So this is a good time to bone up on your knowledge. Here are seven FAQs about this very contagious viral infection. […]

By | May 19th, 2014|Children, Infectious Disease|11 Comments

Typhus Hits “Revolution”: Could It Hit Here?

Part 1 in the “Long-Term-Disaster Diseases” series. by James Hubbard, MD, MPH A doctor goes into this tent full of people who look deathly ill, some coughing. He comes out in about a minute and proclaims they all have typhus. Good diagnostician. But is it realistic? Could you tell that quickly whether people have this disease? And how dangerous is it? This scene is from the NBC television series Revolution, which is about how a bunch of people cope with life after the grid goes down—permanently. No electricity of any sort. It got me to thinking about typhus since an outbreak is a real possibility in a prolonged disaster situation. In fact, a couple of forms of it are not that uncommon in the United States right now. And in some other countries it’s much more widespread, especially Africa. So, let’s start at the beginning. What is typhus? […]

By | February 3rd, 2014|Infectious Disease|26 Comments

How to Keep a Heat Rash from Turning Dangerous

by James Hubbard, M.D., M.P.H. Believe it or not, I grew up in Mississippi and didn’t know what prickly heat was until I started my practice. In medical training we didn’t concern ourselves with such trivialities. But in real life prickly heat, or a heat rash, can be quite an itchy, prickly nuisance. Many people came to see me for this, and I learned how to recognize it pretty fast. And the heat-rash remedies? They haven’t really changed in those thirty years. So why, in a survival medicine blog, should I even bring it up? Because in summer disaster situations, with less bathing and no air-conditioning, heat rashes are bound to be more common, and more likely to become serious skin infections. They can even make you more prone to heatstroke. Here’s why. […]

By | May 31st, 2012|Hot, Rashes, Skin, Weather|59 Comments