Take A Loved One To The Doctor Day

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Got a medical question for Dr. Rameck Hunt? Text your queries to OhOhOh (646464).

Dr. Hunt is one-third of The Three Doctors, a trio of childhood friends who committed themselves to pursuing careers in medicine. Dr. Hunt is a board certified internist at University Medical Center at Princeton and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.

Besides the children and elderly, is it truly that important for adults in my age range (late 20s) to get the flu vaccine?

DR. HUNT: Yes. The flu session officially starts the first week in October, but the regular flu vaccine is available now. Get your flu shot! And that’s especially if you are in one of the high risk groups.

My doctor told me I have vertigo. I’ve tried antibiotics, Mucinex, Claritan and Flonase. It Helped a little, but I still have dizziness & sinus pressure. Please help.

DR. HUNT: Vertigo has many causes. Your doctor did a lot of the appropriate initial things. You could have something called BPPV or benign paroxsymal positional vertigo, A vertigo that happens when you change the position of your head. There are treatments for that. I would go see an ENT, an ear nose and throat doctor.

Are there long-term affects from having frequent laryngitis?

DR. HUNT: There can be long-term affects from frequent laryngitis. You can get vocal cord polyps or other issues. You should have the underlying cause addressed. I would go see an ENT so they can address this. Often times, they will look at your vocal cords with a special camera to find out the cause.

My husband get nose bleeds when he gets hot. What’s the cause?

DR. HUNT: If you have nose bleeds and high blood pressure, it could be from the high blood pressure, especially if your blood pressure is not controlled. But more importantly, it could mean that you have very fragile veins in your nose that are prone to bleeding if the air is dry, etc. I would consult an ENT.

What could it mean if you have numbness in your thigh?

DR. HUNT: Numbness in your thigh could come from a number of things. Sometimes the pain can be from a nerve that is being compressed, especially if you are overweight. It’s called lateral nerve syndrome (or meralgia paresthetica). It also could be originating from your lower back. I suggest you go to see your doctor to figure it out.

I take Coumadin. If my doctor keeps changing the amount I take every other week, because my Protyme levels are too high, should I consult another doctor?

DR. HUNT: Taking Coumadin is a very tricky thing at times. The dose is adjusted based off your INR. The key is consistency – I tell all my patients that. Consistency in your diet will keep your INR consistent. If you eat a lot of green leafy veggies that have a lot of Vitamin K in them, it can change your INR. I tell patients it’s okay to eat your greens; just be consistent with the amount you eat every week.

My boyfriend has erectile dysfunction. Is there something that can be done about it? And how do I bring the subject up to him that he needs help?

DR HUNT: There are medicinces that can help erectile dysfunction – Viagra, Cialis and Levitra, to name a few. I would suggest he goes to see a doctor because it could result from a medical issue he is having and not know, or it could be from emotional stress or things like that.

What class of medicine is most effective to prevent migraines? The imitrex-type medicines (the “triptans” as they are called for short) are the most widely used medicines.

DR. HUNT: Make sure you talk to your doctor to get the right diagnosis. Sometimes headaches could be tension headaches or from caffeine withdrawal headaches, to name a few causes. Consult your physician.

What are some alternatives ways to lower blood pressure besides meds?

DR. HUNT: A good diet and at least 30 minutes to an hour of exercise daily will help, but sometimes you still need medicines. Talk to your doctor about it.

Can I ever get off high blood presure pills? I weight 140 and am 5″6′. I take nothing else.

DR. HUNT: You may be able to get off blood pressure medicines, but it depends on the cause. If there is a correctable cause, then correcting whatever that is will help. Diet and exercise changes always help. Often times, though, the vast majority of people with high blood pressure have essential hypertension and require at least one or two medicines. But diet and exercise helps a lot. Make sure you talk to your doctor about options.

I always have a lot of mucus in the back of my throat everyday. I used to smoke for 10 years, but I’ve stopped for a year. Should I worry?

DR. HUNT: This could be allergies or actually acid reflux. Talk to your physician because it can also be other things as well.

What is gangrene in the colon in a woman? How is it caused?

DR. HUNT: Gangrene is something thats dead, so if it’s in the colon, it means a dead colon. That’s caused by a lack of blood supply to that area.

How long should you be on birth control pills? Is eight years too long not to switch to another form of birth control?

DR. HUNT: People are on birth control for many different reasons – some for birth control, other times to control or regulate their periods – so its okay to stay on birth control for multiple years, as long as you don’t smoke! That increases your risk of a blood clot and stroke. Consult your physician about your specific needs and if you want to switch.

I’m a 38-year-old female with normal blood and thyroid levels. When I swallow, it feels like I have an obstruction in my throat. Should I be worried?

DR. HUNT: This could be a number of things, including acid reflux. You should speak with your doctor to talk about your symptom.

I’m having a crawling sensation from my neck to the back of my head. Am I sleeping wrong?

DR. HUNT: That crawling sensation in your back could just be dry skin, but it could also be a host of other things. You should bring it up to your doctor at your next visit.

My question is about facial twitching. I have uncontrollable, non-painful twitching by the left side of mouth and eye. Is this a sign of a stroke coming?

DR. HUNT: Facial twitching could be a nerve irritation, but it could also be something more serious. This is something you should talk to your doctor about very soon.

What could be the results of untreated sleep apnea?

DR. HUNT: Sleep apnea is an interest of mine. It can lead to high blood pressure, depression and anxiety and heart problems, just to name a few. If you have sleep apnea, it should be treated.