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Weekly Live- 20200610

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Weekly Live- 20200610
-Getting back to normal vs creating a higher standard.
-Covid19 updates.
-Risk awareness.
-Things worth living for.


-Hello everyone, this is Siddharth Tambar from Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine. Welcome to our weekly live event. It’s Wednesday, June 10th. I hope everyone is doing well. Last few months have been something, really pretty intense. Here in Chicago, we entered phase three of our COVID recovery, which generally means that people are starting to be able to do more, some more regular activities. Restaurants are allowed to have patrons eat at the restaurant if they’re sitting outdoors and appropriately spaced. And people are progressively starting to go back to work and we’re seeing a lot more people outside and doing activities.

We’re starting to go back to some version of normal life. And it makes me think of a couple of things; you know, what is normal? Should we be better than normal? Where do we go from here? I’ve heard a lot of people say that we’re moving into a new normal, or we have to think about what is a new normal. It was suggested to me that instead of new normal, why don’t we think of a elevated or higher standard of where we want to be?

So I think COVID-19 has made us all think very differently about; the things that we value, how we’re living, a lot of things. And the recent social protest connected with the George Floyd murder, I think make us think about maybe normal isn’t good enough. Maybe our goal should not be to get back to just regular life, Maybe this is a moment where we start asking, how do we elevate and actually live better in terms of our expectations from our interactions with other people in, terms of what we want out of life? And maybe normal is not good enough. Maybe an elevated standard and a new normal is what we should be aiming for.

I know here at work, we’ve been thinking about that. And for the last year, we’ve made a big commitment in terms of communicating better with patients. And I think the last three months, we’ve taken that even higher to the point where we’re committing more resources, even bringing on an additional employee to help out with client service related issues. Because normal was not good enough, because I think our patients deserve a higher standard and hopefully we can deliver upon that higher standard.

So one of the things that I think is interesting, how do we balance risk and benefit? How do we think about getting back into some of the usual things that we do in life, but take into consideration what are the risks that we have to deal with in this kind of newer COVID world? And you know, what things are worth the risk, what things are not worth the risk?

A couple of examples. During the social protests, these last week and a half, there were a lot of people out and people had concern about; is there risk that you’re going to suddenly spread COVID-19 to a lot of people? And that’s interesting because in large groups of people, where you have less social distancing, that potential risk is there, but are there certain risks that are worthwhile taking?

Now, I wouldn’t be thrilled if a 85 year old individual that has multiple medical problems, was out there without mask. But the flip side is; if you’re a young person, a middle aged person, you’re still healthy, you’re wearing a mask, you’re being sensible, you’re protesting non-violently. Maybe that risk is worth it because the benefit is you’re trying to create a better society. It’s an example of where I think thinking about risk and benefit is not a static thing, it’s a much more dynamic thing.

On that same level, the World Health Organization this past week or last couple of days, came out saying that they’re not exactly sure about the risk of asymptomatic spreaders of COVID-19. That’s a little bit disappointing. It’s good news that if the risk is not as bad of asymptomatic spreaders, but the flip side is; we literally just stopped the whole world because of concern about asymptomatic spreaders. I think this is one of those things that’s still up in the air and we still don’t fully understand. And so, I think still maintaining the usual precautions is important, but I think it emphasizes that if you’re in a position of authority, like the World Health Organization, that you need to be careful with your words and how you’re guiding people. Because, if you say one thing one week, and then you say another thing a couple of weeks or couple of months later, that’s a little bit of a problem. Like, we literally stopped all of the world’s economic activity almost to account for asymptomatic spreaders.

But the flip side is; I think for those folks who are considered low risk, getting back into some version of their usual life, maybe they can slowly start creeping back into that. Which is what people are doing and I think that’s smart. I still think it would be sensible that if you do have any medical issues, that you still talk to your trusted physician to get guidance in that regard, that what are your own personal risks? What are things that are worthwhile getting into? And kind of balancing that,
An example of that is; I was speaking with a patient of mine, an 85 year old woman. She’s 85, she’s got things like diabetes, blood pressure but she’s relatively healthy. She’s got a lot of osteoarthritic issues that I help care for. In her words; she hasn’t been this stressed as COVID-19 has put her under stress. And the last time she was under this amount of stress was when she was a little kid living in Northern Italy during World War II bombings. That’s pretty profound to hear somebody say that and it’s affected her life in a lot of ways. For example, it’s because she’s had less social interaction with friends and family, because she’s had less physical activity that she would normally do with those social outings her back has started to ache. She’s a little bit less strong, a little bit weaker and that’s causing her back to be a problem. We’ve been able to maintain her back issue for the last three, four years with some treatment but really just a lot of physical activity. And trying to figure that out for her and realizing that that is a significant issue for her because it’s not only that she has back pain but in turn, that means that it’s hard for her to cook, it’s hard for her to do other things that she enjoys, gardening. And so, trying to figure out a sensible solution for her that’s still is cautious and risk conscious, has taken some effort. And a lot of it has been some small things, things like, well, what about if we try to get you some regular physical activity every hour or two? What if you work with a physical trainer remotely? Little things to try to get her back into that.
But the reality is that this is one of those costs of COVID-19 that I think, that really won’t register in terms of problems officially but it’s one of those things that is really meaningful because it affects her life, it affects her children’s life, it affects her quality of life, it also affects her husband as well. And so, it’s a big deal. So the other thing there is, she’s thinking about; what are the other things that she can get back into? I think it’s her and her husband’s like 60th wedding anniversary, something remarkable like that. And so, they’ve made some plans with their family where they’re going to cautiously try to have some kind of get together in that regard. Where they’re still maintaining some safety measures, social distancing and all that, but realizing that maybe the risk of that is low enough but the benefit is so high that she should absolutely do something like that. And so, I think the next several months are really going to be a lot of balancing benefit and risk and trying to figure that out.

I think one of the other challenges that a lot of us are going to have is how do we get back into our normal physical activity routine? I know the last few months I’ve had to change a lot of things, in terms of maintaining my shoulder health, my back health. Things that I was normally doing, I’ve had to sort of adopt other ideas with home related exercise rather than going to the gym. And I think it’s going to be interesting that as some of these facilities reopen, how do we get back into that? And I think, again, it’s a matter of being smart and targeted and risk aware that likely I’ll probably go back to playing tennis once where I play tennis opens up, because you’ve maintained kind of a natural amount of distance. I’d probably be a little bit more cautious upfront for those first few weeks or even month when they reopen the actual sort of gym facilities. But I think it’s one of those on a case-by-case basis where you recognize the benefit of doing certain activities and you have to balance that with other things.

I know in that same respect, one thing that we’re trying to do at work we’ve had, I mean, my office team has been incredibly busy and really hustling to try to make sure that patients and client service has been maintained the last few months, even when we’ve had COVID-19 going on. And so, we’re trying to set up some sort of outing where we can kind of meet outside of work in a safe space that sort of is able to let the rest of the team kind of cool off, enjoy themselves and sort of recognize some of their hard work. And I think, it’s a low-risk activity that we’ll figure out how to do but the benefit is; it’s a matter of connecting with the people who are working so hard and doing the right thing, that there’s some benefit to that.
I think there’s a version of that, that we have for everyone. Some sort of regular recommendations I would have for folks who are older, that are dealing with some of the challenges of being confined in social distancing is; keep in mind that there are certain things that are still worthwhile doing. You can still take a walk outside. I think when it comes to important life events, birthdays, do we totally avoid them now? I don’t necessarily think so, I think you can do some of these things in a risk-conscious, low-risk way. I think if you’re asymptomatic and you know that the number of people that are going to be at the event is going to be relatively small and limited, you can still partake in some of those activities.

Part of getting out of COVID-19 is recognizing what things are still important and are worth living for. And I think if we take nothing else from the last three and a half months, it’s resetting what is worthwhile for life. I think in the normal groove of life, there’s a lot of just distractions and things that don’t really have a lot of importance that we all get stuck in. And I’d like to think that in this new normal, this elevated standard, that hopefully we start to think about that. Maybe we really allocate our time and efforts on things that are more meaningful to us, because realizing that some things are still worth the risk and there’s a lot of things that really aren’t.

Lastly, the last recommendation for some of my autoimmune patients who are taking medications, good news is; we’re still on track. Meaning that if you’re on meds, understand that the evidence and data out there is that it’s still okay to stay on those medications. I still think you utilize the same precautions that we’ve all been taking in terms of social distancing, as well as wearing masks but understand that there’s no evidence that folks who are on these medications are at higher risk for complications. And as long as you’re asymptomatic and you’re doing well, you’re staying in touch with your physician, you’re making risk-conscious decisions, it’s okay.

I think this, it’s such an interesting time right now that we’re all so risk-conscious and thinking about things in ways that are different. Whether it’s, how do we want to live in a more equitable and just society? Or whether we’re thinking about what things are really worth the risk of living? I think we can come to some decisions individually and hopefully as a society to make smarter, better decisions that make life worthwhile living and make it better. So that we’re not just getting back to the usual normal but that we’re actually trying to live and get to a higher standard.

I appreciate your time. I hope everyone is doing well. Leave me your thoughts, and until next week, have a good day and live well! Thank you, bye-bye.


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MEDICAL ADVICE DISCLAIMER: All content in this message/video/audio broadcast and description including: infor­ma­tion, opinions, con­tent, ref­er­ences and links is for infor­ma­tional pur­poses only. The Author does not pro­vide any med­ical advice on the Site. Access­ing, viewing, read­ing or oth­er­wise using this content does NOT cre­ate a physician-patient rela­tion­ship between you and it’s author. Pro­vid­ing per­sonal or med­ical infor­ma­tion to the Principal author does not cre­ate a physician-patient rela­tion­ship between you and the Principal author or authors. Noth­ing con­tained in this video or it’s description is intended to estab­lish a physician-patient rela­tion­ship, to replace the ser­vices of a trained physi­cian or health care pro­fes­sional, or oth­er­wise to be a sub­sti­tute for pro­fes­sional med­ical advice, diag­no­sis, or treatment. You should con­sult a licensed physi­cian or appropriately-credentialed health care worker in your com­munity in all mat­ters relat­ing to your health.

***About this video***
In this video Siddharth Tambar MD from Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine discusses doing better than normal.

 

Weekly Live- 20200603

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Weekly Live- 20200603
Topics discussed:
-George Floyd
-Peaceful protests
-Riots
-Doing better
-Health disparities
-Covid19

-Okay, hello everyone. This is Siddharth Tambar from Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine. This is our Weekly Live event. It’s June 3rd 2020. My mother just sent me a message saying you’re drinking water while live. Yes, I know. It’s okay. These are some fairly extreme times whether you’re talking COVID whether you’re talking about protests, whether you’re talking about rioting, an extra sip of water on a live stream I think is okay right now. I think we all get some leeway.

So, I’m going to keep it relatively focused and straightforward today. I normally am focused on obviously talking about medical related issues because am a physician obviously will have something to talk about. But you know the last couple months everything has been so focused on COVID. COVID, COVID COVID! And that’s like everything is affected by that you know, are we talking about you know condition x, what’s going on with COVID. People are on treatment, why? But has COVID affected that, COVID COVID COVID. And at some point, you start to get kind of drained from just talking about everything connected with COVID. But that’s obviously what’s on people’s minds.

And so as you try to stretch out to talk about other things, I think there’s always value in that kind of diversity of thought and thinking and what else is going on. This last week however, you know we have to be honest and the only thing that’s on the mind for a lot of us in the United States is really what’s been going on socially in the world or rather in our country. And it’s relevant from not only the standpoint of that’s what on my mind and that’s what’s on the mind of everyone that works in my office, my colleagues, in the town I live in, my family, but I’m sure all of you as well. But also you know, how do we grow, adapt and how do we get better with what we’re doing? because some of the themes and topics of what’s going on right now affects us in healthcare as well for sure.

Obviously the big picture right now is all about George Floyd and protests related to that and now some of the violent activities related or surrounding that as well. And first and foremost you know, it’s made me think about some things very differently. And you know the video of George Floyd getting killed. I’ve never seen anything quite so dramatic and so vicious to see someone literally get choked out and killed on a video, that’s something. You know, with that said, I mean, we’re constantly nowadays seeing videos of Black Americans black people being shot by either security forces or civilians. And that’s some heavy stuff and so relevant because it affects not only our neighbors, our colleagues, co-workers, employees, team members, all that kind of stuff. But you know some of this even affects, you know my daughter who’s six years old. I’m obviously very disturbed to see some of these kind of things on TV because it is extreme and so dehumanizing. But, you know, on top of that, I’m obviously not thrilled that, you know my six year old daughter is seeing some of these things. And while she hasn’t necessarily seen a video of that of George Floyd being killed, you know, she knows what’s happened. She knows that this happened to somebody by a police officer who is supposed to be there to help. And fortunately, my wife has a level of sophistication and emotional intelligence to have that kind of conversation with her to give some perspective and thought and understanding to it. But you know, what a world that we live in that our kids that young have to be thinking and aware of this. Obviously, incredible. Not a good thing.

On the other hand, you know also just seeing the video of George Floyd being killed, knowing some of the things that he said, not just that he can’t breathe, but even calling out to his mother knowing that his life is ending. I mean, just heartbreaking. Really just amazing. And in my office today, you know we have our weekly meeting. And you know we spent some time talking about this because it affects all of us and it weighs on us and I think talking about it, discussing it is vital to really not to make sense of it, but just sort of deal with it. And so that’s really what’s going on in my mind.
You know, it’s been impressive the nonviolent protests that have happened after that. It’s very encouraging to see the diverse group of people that are involved in that, whether it’s ages, whether it’s racial ethnic groups, all over the country that’s incredibly positive and productive and something that I’m proud of as an American for sure. On the flip side, you know the violence, the riots, the looting that have happened afterward, is devastating and very disappointing and so hurtful to people. And to see what’s happened certainly in the city I live in here in Chicago is shocking. And first and foremost, understand that here at work you know we’re very fortunate that even though we’re located downtown, we’re in an area that is still relatively protected and okay and safe. And so, in our office I mean, we’ve been fine. In fact, we’re starting this week we’ve been working in the office three days per week and starting next week we’re here five days per week. We’ve been fortunate that things have not been more extreme or problematic and so I’m very grateful for that.

But, you know this goes much beyond just you know what we’re doing at work. The reality is that here at work we’ll be okay, we’ll get through this security is fine. But, you know it’s made me think about other things as well. You know, at baseline there are security issues that a lot of our friends, colleagues have to deal with that maybe we don’t always think about. And I think decent people think about, you know what they’ve seen in the last week and say this is unacceptable and having that kind of animosity or dehumanization of another person is unacceptable, especially when it’s based on things like race, ethnicity and gender.

It’s occurred to me that, you know at baseline, obviously, black people have a level of stress and bias that they have to deal with that most of us don’t have to think about. And even if we have our own issues and our own biases that we have to confront on a regular basis you know our black brothers, sisters, colleagues, friends, neighbors, they deal with a level of stress on a daily level that is crazy. And it’s unacceptable.
Since I’ve had my daughter who’s six years old, you know I’ve thought about issues that women deal with in a much different way as well. And, you know at baseline it’s disturbing for me to think that at baseline women have concerns about security every single day. And that the greatest threat to women kind is mankind. That’s terrible. And so even if we don’t have explicit biases, and if we don’t have explicit badness in our heart or in our actions, the implicit biases that so many of us carry and walk around with are making the lives for a lot of our citizens worse, whether it’s for black folks or their ethnic or racial groups and certainly for women as well. That’s unacceptable and I think that’s something that you know as individuals we have to work on.

You know, locally, you know I didn’t grow up in Chicago, I grew up in Western New York, but I’ve been in Chicago for almost 20 years now. And I’ve been in practice since 2008. So for 12 years now. And the vast majority of people that have worked for me have generally grown up and have very deep roots in Metro Chicago, whether that’s North side, South side, West side or the suburbs. And to see their city and their area being burned down is very rough. And it made me realize that for a lot of the people that have spent the time and the effort to help me at work, to help patients and to help my professional career that a lot of them at baseline have security issues based on a neighborhood that they live in, or social issues that they have to deal with, if based on their racial or ethnic background, or security concerns just because they’re women. And the majority of people that work in my office are women. And it strikes me that for them to still be able to deal with that on a daily basis and to come to work, and to show such a high level of professionalism. I mean that takes a lot. And I’m impressed by that. And I’m extremely grateful for that. Because a lot of those things I don’t necessarily have to think about on a daily basis. And I’m impressed that those folks who support me and help me out, are able to push through those things in a way that goes above and beyond what is frequently required or expected. And so I’m extremely grateful for that.

So, you know it’s interesting here in Chicago, we are actually in the next phase of opening up like we’ve had this crazy week where protests are still ongoing, but on a nonviolent basis. Incredible amounts of violence though and yet we are actually opening up to the next phase to account for COVID and I think for businesses that have the wherewithal, the guts to kind of persevere and try to open up now, hats off to them. because that’s not easy. I can tell you here at Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine, we’ve been very fortunate that we’ve been able to continue at a significant level because my team’s been able to figure out telemedicine at such a high level. And we’re pretty much getting back to full capacity and doing what we need to do.
But this is, you know the new normal. It’s gotta be better than the old normal, because the old normal wasn’t that good. The old normal was a world that made it a lot harder for black folks, for women, and was kind of lousy to begin with. And I think this is an opportunity for us where we have such extreme challenges but we can do extremely well. And how we react to create a better world is how we are defined going forward. So you know, hopefully the new normal is dramatically better than what we’ve been dealing with. Anyway, I know this has been sort off my normal flow and sort of ideas. But this is important.

Reality is we need to do better for each other, but this affects not just things outside the office. The reality is that when you look at health outcomes for black folks, Latinos, even women when it comes to heart disease like their outcomes are worse than other populations. And is that because that there are intrinsic problems, metabolic problems, maybe. But are there differences in terms of how people are treated and dealt with how their health concerns are addressed long-term. If black folks have higher rates of have high blood pressure long-term because they’re not getting the same level of care that the rest of us do. Or if their rates of asthma are worse than other asthmatics then they do worse with coping. And that’s what we see, we see that COVID patients that are having much harder times tend to be blacks and Latinos. And I can’t fix, none of us can fix the macro the global problems, but on an individual basis on a micro basis, we can do better. And I think we all deserve that to live in a world that is better.
So thank you for your time. Have a good day and live well and look forward to talking again next week. Bye bye.


***For more educational content:

Sign up for our email newsletter:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/newsletter/
See our blog:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/blog/
Listen to the Regenerative Medicine Report podcast:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/regenerative-medicine-report/

***For evaluation and treatment at Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine:
Determine if you are a Regenerative Medicine treatment candidate:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/regenexx-candidate-form/
Contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/contact-us/

MEDICAL ADVICE DISCLAIMER: All content in this message/video/audio broadcast and description including: infor­ma­tion, opinions, con­tent, ref­er­ences and links is for infor­ma­tional pur­poses only. The Author does not pro­vide any med­ical advice on the Site. Access­ing, viewing, read­ing or oth­er­wise using this content does NOT cre­ate a physician-patient rela­tion­ship between you and it’s author. Pro­vid­ing per­sonal or med­ical infor­ma­tion to the Principal author does not cre­ate a physician-patient rela­tion­ship between you and the Principal author or authors. Noth­ing con­tained in this video or it’s description is intended to estab­lish a physician-patient rela­tion­ship, to replace the ser­vices of a trained physi­cian or health care pro­fes­sional, or oth­er­wise to be a sub­sti­tute for pro­fes­sional med­ical advice, diag­no­sis, or treatment. You should con­sult a licensed physi­cian or appropriately-credentialed health care worker in your com­munity in all mat­ters relat­ing to your health.
***About this video***
In this video Siddharth Tambar MD from Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine discusses doing better.

Update at Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine 20200520

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Update at Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine 20200520
-Our Covid19 plan updated
***For more educational content:
Sign up for our email newsletter:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/newsletter/
See our blog:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/blog/
Listen to the Regenerative Medicine Report podcast:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/regenerative-medicine-report/

***For evaluation and treatment at Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine:
Determine if you are a Regenerative Medicine treatment candidate:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/regenexx-candidate-form/
Contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/contact-us/

MEDICAL ADVICE DISCLAIMER: All content in this message/video/audio broadcast and description including: infor­ma­tion, opinions, con­tent, ref­er­ences and links is for infor­ma­tional pur­poses only. The Author does not pro­vide any med­ical advice on the Site. Access­ing, viewing, read­ing or oth­er­wise using this content does NOT cre­ate a physician-patient rela­tion­ship between you and it’s author. Pro­vid­ing per­sonal or med­ical infor­ma­tion to the Principal author does not cre­ate a physician-patient rela­tion­ship between you and the Principal author or authors. Noth­ing con­tained in this video or it’s description is intended to estab­lish a physician-patient rela­tion­ship, to replace the ser­vices of a trained physi­cian or health care pro­fes­sional, or oth­er­wise to be a sub­sti­tute for pro­fes­sional med­ical advice, diag­no­sis, or treatment. You should con­sult a licensed physi­cian or appropriately-credentialed health care worker in your com­munity in all mat­ters relat­ing to your health.
***About this video***
In this video Siddharth Tambar MD from Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine discusses the clinic’s update on 20200520, including Covid19 plan.

How doctors can still help during Covid

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How doctors can still help during Covid.
Even though the current situation is difficult, your trusted physician should still be available to assist you during this time of crisis. For our patients at Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine we are still available to guide you through this time, and maximize your musculoskeletal health. For people new to our practice, feel free to call, email, text, or message your questions to us.

***For more educational content:
Sign up for our email newsletter:

Subscribe to our Newsletter

See our blog:

Chicago Arthritis Blog

Listen to the Regenerative Medicine Report podcast:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/regenerative-medicine-report/

***For evaluation and treatment at Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine:
Determine if you are a Regenerative Medicine treatment candidate:

Candidate Form

Contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment:
https://www.chicagoarthritis.com/contact-us/

MEDICAL ADVICE DISCLAIMER: All content in this message/video/audio broadcast and description including: infor­ma­tion, opinions, con­tent, ref­er­ences and links is for infor­ma­tional pur­poses only. The Author does not pro­vide any med­ical advice on the Site. Access­ing, viewing, read­ing or oth­er­wise using this content does NOT cre­ate a physician-patient rela­tion­ship between you and it’s author. Pro­vid­ing per­sonal or med­ical infor­ma­tion to the Principal author does not cre­ate a physician-patient rela­tion­ship between you and the Principal author or authors. Noth­ing con­tained in this video or it’s description is intended to estab­lish a physician-patient rela­tion­ship, to replace the ser­vices of a trained physi­cian or health care pro­fes­sional, or oth­er­wise to be a sub­sti­tute for pro­fes­sional med­ical advice, diag­no­sis, or treatment. You should con­sult a licensed physi­cian or appropriately-credentialed health care worker in your com­munity in all mat­ters relating to your health.

 

Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine update 20200415



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Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine update 20200415

Update on the happenings from Siddharth Tambar MD from Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine.
-Covid19/Corona Virus updates
-Testing challenges
-Good news!

Hello, this is Siddharth Tambar from Chicago arthritis and regenerative medicine. In this video this is meant to give you an update as to what’s going on here at Chicago arthritis and regenerative medicine on April 15th, 2020. In the middle of the covid-19 outbreak. There are some interesting challenges and also some positive things. I’ll start with the challenges and then get to the positive things.

So interestingly, I do have several patients that it’s come to my attention have turned out to be covid-19 positive. These are patients where we’ve done telemed evaluations because they have some chronic issues that were assisting with in either their autoimmune spectrum or chronic musculoskeletal issues. And it’s interesting. There is variety in terms of who is who has been affected but in general these are people that are typically a little bit higher risk either based on age or other medical issues. And what’s interesting is thankfully all these people have they seem to have done well, meaning they’ve recovered. Only one person was actually hospitalized and required formal medical treatment and has done well. In all cases they’re now all sort of quarantined, their families quarantined, and they seem to be recovering.

We’ve a couple of cases where people have really good stories from the last maybe six to eight weeks that sounds like based on their travel history that maybe at one point in the last month, maybe they were infected with covid-19. Hard to prove that this point of course, but some suspicion that these people could have had that. Another really challenging thing that I’m hearing is still about the testing. I think that’s improved but I’ve heard cases where people who very clearly were at some risk, not necessarily high high risk people based on age or other comorbidities. But as an example someone who works at a hospital and had fevers, cough, dry cough, as well as had lost his sense of smell, some classic things that have been described about covid-19. And he tried to get checked out at the hospital that he works at and they really wouldn’t test him. And he ended up actually getting testing on his own and tested positive. Paying out of pocket for that and tested positive. And thankfully he did that because he’s now self-quarantined, his whole family is self-quarantined. They’re doing all the right things. These are good citizens and good people of our society that have done that but they’ve had to find solutions that had to go above and beyond what our system could even help them out with which is which is disappointing at like that bigger picture level, but at that local micro-level to know that people still take that that seriously not only their own health, but their responsibility to others was heartening to me. And I’ve seen that in a couple of cases and so I’m actually happy to see that.

It brings me to the to another challenge, which is we’re getting to the point where either to some degree society is trying to get back to business as usual in two weeks, toward early May or that may get pushed off until mid-may. I think for those of us that can think about this rationally and sensibly life going back to normal is still going to be delayed for some time. We’ll have some version of normal, but it’s not going to be full on what we were two to three months ago. I think we have to be honest with that. And one idea is can we start to check some degree of antibody testing to determine who’s been exposed previously to covid-19, who has more of an acute exposure, and who hasn’t been exposed so that we can start to risk stratify people when it comes back to going to work. Take into consideration not only some of their other medical comorbidities, medications that they’re on, but their actual exposure history to covid-19. Because as time goes on we may realize that a lot more people have been exposed and are now possibly immune or lower risk- maybe is the way to think about it. Some of the challenges that I’m hearing and and I am someone and our clinic and our outfit is trying to actually get antibody testing kits, but some of the things that we’re hearing some of the challenges include what is the validity of some of these kits when it comes to testing. And how have they been tested and how they been verified. And the challenge is that in an attempt to get more kits out there, some of these may have very limited testing, some of these may have been tested in a very small number of patients. Some of these may have been tested not over months, maybe not even over weeks, maybe over days and so that that is that’s a little bit of a challenge. And as a individual physician the way that I try to think about this is if the evidence is muddy and the situation is little bit hazy, first and foremost is there good evidence that we can rely on. And are there low-risk, efficacious options for my patients to help us make good smart decisions. And sometimes there’s a little bit of conflict in those two things, meaning is there great evidence and what is a smart low-risk good option. And it can be a challenge but trying to make some good smart medical decisions is always the right way to go and I don’t know if we have the full answers right now in terms of what antibody tests are best and most appropriate to use but my hope is that over the next couple weeks we start getting more clarity on that so that we can start making smart decisions as to how people can get back into some degree of their normal life. And from a medical standpoint for our patients who have chronic issues that still need to be treated, how do we manage some of those treatment decisions, whether it’s medications, procedures, other types of treatments- How do we manage that in a low-risk smart way for not only that individual but for society as a whole.

So those are some of the challenges, here’s some good things, I think. We’re still able to connect with patients. I think the telemedicine route as a tactic has been working really well. I think people are taking to it. I think people appreciate the ability to communicate directly with their physician and get some guidance and trusted opinions. I’ve had some pretty good conversations not only with my existing patients who already know and trust me, but also newer patients that need guidance for some of their issues that have been developing or have been chronic. And I think that is fantastic because we can take the technology that’s available and we can still help people out in ways that are ethical, professional, and still beneficial and value-driven.

Lastly, I think resilience and strength and joy and happiness and gratitude are still important at this time. It is April 15th, and we had 2 inches of snow this morning in Chicago. And for those that don’t know this that can happen in this sort of climate. And in the morning my daughter and I had the chance to go outside and try to enjoy the snow. And what’s interesting is there wasn’t a lot of snow. We can small snowman. There wasn’t a lot of snow so that we couldn’t actually go sledding, but we were able to have a little bit of a snowball flight. That’s a way to try to enjoy what we do have. Certain things are not going to be ideal, but we can still find joy and happiness in life. And I think it’s important to still try to find those kind of opportunities because that’s what makes living worthwhile and that’s what makes struggle worthwhile. You can still find happiness. So be strong, be resilient. I hope everyone is doing well. Have a good day and live well, bye bye.

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***About this video***
In this video Siddharth Tambar MD from Chicago Arthritis and Regenerative Medicine discusses Covid19, testing issues, telemedicine, and good news.