The factors that turn a slip into a fall are minuscule and can change in an instant. When a stumble turns into a fall it can mean that someone ends up in the hospital or has an embarrassing story that is shared later with friends and family. Preventing a stumble from turning into a fall depends as much on luck as it does on preparation. Falls can be deadly for the elderly and people with prior serious injuries. A study is examining the factors that convert a stumble into a fall to better understand how elder care facilities can be designed to mitigate these risks.
In recent years, e-cigarettes (also known as vapes) have gained in popularity. The primary reason seems to be that they are perceived as being safer than regular cigarettes. Vaping also helps people avoid the odor of tobacco on clothes, furnishings and automobile interiors. In some cases, e-cigarettes can help people quit smoking altogether.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, between 2007 and 2013 the number of traumatic brain injuries increased by nearly 50%. For survivors of these kinds of injuries, the road to recovery is different and long. There are a number of factors that affect how quickly and effective rehabilitation will be.
Diagnostic errors are common and can have fatal consequences for patients. It is estimated that up to 18 million diagnostic errors occur annually. These are responsible for approximately 10% of fatalities and 12% of adverse events that occur in hospitals each year. Each year, the National Institute of Medicine estimates that 74,000 people die as a result of a diagnostic error. Nationwide, it is estimated that as many as 15% of patients who see a physician for a new medical issue may be misdiagnosed.
The near-term effects of brain injuries have been intensively studied. But there can be lifelong effects as well. For example, a new study shows that victims of severe traumatic brain injuries (TBI) may face a dramatically higher risk for dementia than people who suffer less severe brain injuries. Age appears to be a factor too. The study showed that people aged 41-50 who suffered a TBI had a sharply higher risk for dementia than those who suffered a TBI at a younger age.