Dr. Todd Harris

Banner Change: Winter 2018 Edition

Written by Dr. Todd Harris

January 3, 2018 – This weekend’s low temperatures have made me feel better about the choice for this year’s winter banner picture (look at that kid in the snow – not a care in the world – we should all be so lucky).

Living in Raleigh, when you think of winter you don’t quickly jump to snow, but – after temperatures in the teens this weekend – snow doesn’t seem like such a far-away, crazy idea.

[Editor’s Note: So it appears today we may see some snow; stay tuned if you have an appointment later today or in the morning]

Flu Season So Far at RCAM 2017-2018

Predictably, we are starting to see more cases of influenza (I would ignore our numbers from “Christmas Week” – many patients are out of town and RCAM had shorter office hours on a few of those days).

As of the week before Christmas, the CDC did categorize North Carolina as not having had as much flu (so far) as other states.

If you look at what the CDC website (click on picture below for link) is saying about influenza activity here during that time, North Carolina estimates were characterized as “local activity” (yellow) whereas most other states were considered “widespread” (brown).

That is nice for the time being but North Carolina probably won’t stay “yellow” much longer. It appears that January and February will likely be months where we see bigger numbers of new cases of influenza.

“OK, I Get It, Flu is Coming… What Should I Do If My Child Has Symptoms?”

Let me introduce you to a very helpful website.

Our friends at the American Academy of Pediatrics via HealthyChildren.org have developed a very handy tool. The Symptom Checker provides background information about whatever illness or symptom you are asking about. It also provides guidelines for when to call and what care to provide.

Here is what the Symptom Checker says about influenza.

The online tools are good for quick answers, but sometimes you need to speak to a person with knowledge in that area (This happened to me with a gift I received this year. There was no instruction manual – unlike many, I like instruction manuals. There was no phone number to call and the online help wasn’t helpful. I really needed to talk to a person with knowledge about the product.).

So – please – feel free to give us a call if you prefer and let’s talk about it, person-to-person.

Big Thanks for Your Holiday Cards

A big thanks to everyone who sent us a holiday card in December. Our staff really enjoys seeing the pictures of our families and patients “through the years.” Some of you we displayed cards going back each year for 10 years. That is some real history.