The Delta variant has made it way to Shelby County. What should we know? | Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

Question: Living in the mid-south, should we be concerned about the delta variants? Answer: Absolutely yes. Though to most people, it may seem that the pandemic is over and that we are done with the virus, this is not the case. The virus is not done with us.  There is still a great deal of background […]

What parents should know about their children receiving COVID-19 vaccine | Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

Vaccine is our best bet to keep our children safe and we have already seen the success of so many childhood disease like measles and chickenpox from vaccines. Questions: Should I have my 12 year old child vaccinated for COVID-19? Answer: Yes. Once the FDA gives emergency use authorization (EUA) to the Pfizer vaccine for […]

Why early contact tracing is key to stopping next coronavirus wave | Opinion – Commercial Appeal

If we are to get ahead of the virus, we need to respond rapidly for testing and tracing. Hundreds of COVID-19 infections per day are a public health emergency. While we may want to think that the pandemic is behind us, our recent experience tells us that this is not the case. Michigan, Brazil and […]

What to know about Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution pause | Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

The FDA and CDC both recommend the pause of Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine after six Americans had blood clots after taking the vaccine. Question: Should I be concerned about blood clots after the vaccine? Answer: You should be aware, but not concerned. Of the three vaccines available it is only the Johnsons and Johnson […]

What to know about the P1 mutant COVID-19 strain in Shelby County | A Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

In cities in Brazil where it originated, the P1 mutant strain has caused devastation with a huge number of COVID-19 cases as well as hospitalization. Question: What is the P1 mutant strain? Answer: The COVID-19 virus changes each time it replicates in a cell. Sometimes, these changes make the virus more easy to transmit, more […]

How testing and contact tracing protected University of Memphis students from COVID-19 mutant strains | Opinion – Commercial Appeal

One case found at the university led to 29 mutant strains cases. On Feb. 20 we saw our last case of the mutant UK strain on campus. In the following weeks over a thousand tests have been negative. We are entering a new phase of our war against the COVID-19 virus in Shelby County. With […]

Here’s what you need to know after you get fully vaccinated | A Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

There are still aspects of the COVID-19 vaccine that still need to be determined but it still remains the best defense in our fight against COVID-19. Here’s what you need to know after you’re fully vaccinated. If I am vaccinated can I gather with others without a mask?Yes, being vaccinated has benefits. The Centers for […]

Search and ye shall find: testing, sequencing and the search for variant coronavirus cases | Opinion – Commercial Appeal

Over two millennia ago, the great Greek tragedian Sophocles said “Look and you will find it – what is unsought will go undetected.” This holds true today. In the Memphis regional area, local laboratory directors looked. We conducted COVID-19 testing with sequencing to identify mutant strains, and we found them. Since Jan. 1, we sequenced […]

Why are the daily COVID-19 case numbers declining so fast? | A Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

There are various reasons why COVID-19 cases have seen a decline. Dr. Manoj Jain breaks those reasons down and also gives additional insight to your other concerns. Question: Why are the daily COVID-19 case numbers declining so fast? Answer: I wish I knew for certain. It is likely a mish-mash of many factors. First, the […]

Should I send my child back to in-person school? | A Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

Question: Should I send my children to in-person school? Answer: Yes. It has been a year since many children have not attended in person school, the educational and psychological risk outweighs the risk from the coronavirus. Last March we did not know much about the spread of the COVID-19 among children and in school settings. […]

How effective is double-masking against COVID-19? | A Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

Masks work because they reduce the transmission of virus filled aerosol droplets from infected person to an uninfected person. Question: Does double masking really help reduce the transmission of Covid infection? Answer: Absolutely yes. For nearly 6 months, I have been double masking when I see my Covid positive patients at the hospital or at […]

What side effects should I expect after taking COVID-19 Vaccine? | Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

Vaccine side effects can be lumped into three major categories: Mild such as body ache and soreness in the arm, moderate such as headache  and severe that may cause shortness of breath. “Memphis healthcare professionals overcome difficulties during COVID-19 pandemic” Question: I am planning to get the vaccine, what side effects should I expect? Answer: Good […]

The choice is clear: get the COVID-19 vaccine or the virus | Opinion – Commercial Appeal

Though there are questions raised regarding the vaccines’ safety and efficiency, it still remains the best defenses in the fight against COVID-19. Vaccine expert anticipates vaccine distribution to improve, despite rough start. Dean of the School of Public Health at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Dr. Paul Erwin, anticipates vaccine distribution will continue to […]

How does our immune system work to fight COVID-19? A Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

Our battle against the virus is both an individual and collective effort: our individual immune systems and our public health system. Question: How does our immune system work to fight COVID-19? Answer: Our immune system is our greatest and best defence against the virus. The reason COVID-19 is causing so much infection is because it is […]

How many patients will die in Shelby County from COVID-19? | A Q&A with Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

These high numbers of cases are translating to an increasing number of deaths. I along with Dr. Fridtj of Thomas did a rough calculation of the projected deaths in Shelby County for the next two months. As of Dec. 18 over 800 people in Shelby County have died of COVID-19. This number may more than […]

Should I get the COVID-19 vaccine? | A Q&A with Dr. Manoj Jain – Commercial Appeal

Dr. Jain answers your questions regarding the recently distributed COVID-19 vaccines. Question: Should I get the COVID-19 vaccine? Answer: As the vaccine becomes available to our healthcare workers and first responders—I got my shot on Friday—many in the general population are wondering if they should get the vaccine in the coming months? Each person has […]

Reopening America: What restructuring communities will look like months ahead | Opinion – Commercial Appeal.

For any city or community to even begin a conversation about reopening, it will first need to achieve some basic milestones. Reopening America will be difficult, much like the entry of a space shuttle in the atmosphere or the experiencing of bends by a diver resurfacing from the ocean’s depth. The reopening has been outlined […]

Coronavirus: Social distancing is key to combating pandemic / Opinion – Commercial Appeal

How much for how long will this last? That is the question people ask most frequently about the COVID-19 pandemic. To answer this question we need to understand the major factor that is fueling the pandemic: It is people. People connecting to people allows the virus to jump from person to person, doubling every six days. We can […]

What’s the ‘new normal’ with coronavirus? – Commercial Appeal : Opinion

Wow, who could have imagined that a 120-nanometer particle would jolt financial markets by trillions of dollars, or bring a country and the world to a shutdown, or even humble the most powerful of political leaders to declare a national emergency. No longer are we in denial that our lives will go on as usual. We […]

Politics of climate change leading us away from science and into ignorance – Commercial appeal

Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma were canaries in the coal mine of what is happening to our changing climate. Let anyone who denies climate change and the human contribution to it be forewarned. No one can prove a direct cause-effect relationship between 3-to-7 degree warming to the coastal waters in the Gulf of Mexico to the […]

Yoga continues to surprise with potential health benefits – Commercial Appeal

I began one of the longest days of the year with a sun salutation — a mountain pose, the lunge, the downward dog, the plank pose, baby cobra, child’s pose, powerful pose (essentially a squat) and back -to-the-mountain pose. June 21, the day close to the summer solstice, has been proclaimed as International Yoga Day […]

Research suggests Tylenol can dampen emotional as well as physical pain – commercial appeal

Last week, when I stubbed my toe on our family room coffee table, a throbbing pain ensued. Over the next two to three days, as the bruise turned pink and then purple, the pain persisted. During the same time, I had a case of the blues. I am overstressed at work with several staff on […]

Understanding root causes is first step in confronting violence – Commercial Appeal

At a time when our lives are filled with news of violence, it seems appropriate to talk about peace. With the attacks in Paris, San Bernardino and Brussels fresh in our memory, with Sandy Hook, Charleston and the Wisconsin Temple shooting not yet faded from our thoughts, and with Ferguson and Chicago police incidents leaving […]

Quest for meaning makes satisfying midlife – Commercial Appeal

When he turned 45, Mitch Alsup bought a red Corvette. Mitch is a quick-talking guy with dirty blonde hair and a short, trim physique. He has a ready smile and is willing to share his story. “As a kid, I use to go down to the Chevrolet dealership and sit in a Corvette,” he recalls. […]

Let’s all do our part to reduce food waste – Commercial Appeal

I am about to place my plate in the sink, until I see a single pea left on my plate. I recall a recent article in National Geographic that stated that one-third of all the food we produce is wasted. I have a Zen moment, and think of the journey the pea made to reach […]

Meditation a useful technique for achieving mindfulness – Commercial Appeal

We sit in a conference room on red swivel chairs, quiet, motionless, eyes closed. We turn off our senses just like we turn down the house lights, switch off the television, and close the garage door at the end of the day. We become numb and detached from our bodies. For the past eight weeks, […]

Education can Empower in Fighting Ebola – Commercial Appeal

    If an ill patient, who unexpectedly has Ebola, landed in Memphis, it is likely that my partner or I would see him. We work as infectious disease doctors at the hospital closest to the airport. The Ebola patient would present with fever, nausea and vomiting, indistinguishable from a flu or a viral illness that […]

Doctors struggling over role in treating childhood obesity – Commercial Appeal

Lying in a hospital bed, my seriously obese patient can barely see her swollen and odorous right foot over her abdominal fat. The foot is soon to be amputated, the result of an untreatable infection exacerbated by diabetes and kidney failure, which developed in part because of obesity. Her two children, ages 6 and 12, […]

Sinusitis among most mistreated illnesses – Commercial Appeal

Over the past month my daughter, my aunt, my father-in-law and sister-in-law all have been taking antibiotics for a sinus or an upper respiratory infection. As the infectious disease doctor in the family, I feel partly responsible for all this. For my teenage daughter it started with a simple cold and runny nose, which she […]

Vaccine can prevent deadly flu complications – Commercial Appeal

The night before I was leaving for a three-week medical mission trip, I was called urgently to the ICU to see Rachel (name altered), a previously healthy woman in her late 40s. She had started a new job as a customer service agent. Rachel was the sickest patient I had seen in months and I […]

Complications after surgery are urgent challenges – Commercial Appeal

My uncle, Vinay Mehta, who had his second bypass surgery four days earlier, is rushed back to the ICU hooked up to monitors and multiple IV lines. A critical care doctor who wears cowboy boots and uses words sparingly is at the foot of the bed, and three nurses adjust drips, measure my uncle’s blood […]

My uncle’s medical journey – Commercial Appeal

My uncle, Vinay Mehta, lies quietly on a gurney in the hospital’s pre-post catherization room. His wife of 40 years is by his side. The TV across the room is flickering, and the EKG monitor behind him beats a regular rhythm. His cardiologist, who just performed the heart catherization, is a family friend and is […]

Healthy Memphis: Tick-borne illness may be cause of summer fever – Commercial Appeal

Karen Young, a woman whose short reddish-brown hair reminded me of Julie Andrews from the movie “Sound of Music,” tells me her fever and body aches started a few days before the 4th of July weekend. “I was hurting all over, like arthritis bothering me on a rainy day.” She is stiff, uncomfortable lying in […]

Guest column: Bend in health cost curve can be sustained – Commercial Appeal

We have done it. We have decreased the increase in the cost of healthcare. Let us explain. For three decades (1980–2009), the cost of healthcare has been increasing each year at an average rate of 7.4%—double the rate of inflation. However, over the past three years,  the increase in healthcare expenditures has remained at a […]

Cleanliness may not be best when it comes to pacifiers – Commercial Appeal

Years ago, when my children, who are now teenagers, were babies and they dropped a pacifier onto the floor, we rinsed it with tap water before putting it in their mouth. As a parent and as an infectious disease doctor, sterility is of utmost importance to me. While this may be lifesaving in the hospital, […]

Healthy Memphis: Besides pleasure, biking and walking trails lead to significant health benefits – Commercial Appeal

Two weekends ago, when the temperature hit the low 70s and the afternoon sun was warm, but not Memphis hot, my 13-year-old son and I put on our helmets and hopped onto our freshly serviced bikes for a ride. I had not seriously ridden a bike for a generation, and my son had stayed within […]

Denying employment could be powerful disincentive for smokers – Commercial Appeal

As I walk into the hospital each day, I notice patients and families sitting outside on benches that are surrounded by large signs prohibiting smoking on hospital grounds. For over five years, a collaborative and concerted effort by Memphis hospitals has successfully made all the hospital campuses smoke-free. Now, in other states, hospital systems like […]

Doctors need to eliminate waste from healthcare – Commercial Appeal

Thirty percent of health care spending — amounting to $750 billion a year — is wasted, according to a recent report by the Institute of Medicine. I know. As a doctor, I am party to this waste, and I think doctors can play a major role in recovering it. In a private conversation, a cardiologist […]

Family support makes transplants easier to take – Commercial Appeal

SUBMITTED PHOTO Juana Boyland won medals in several events in the 2002 Transplant Olympics. She underwent a lung transplant. I had not recognized the deep bonds between sisters until I saw my two daughters holding each other in a long embrace after the older one returned from college. Thinking back, I should have recognized this […]