Melissa returns to Dr. Smith’s office, where they review the results of her tests and her signs and symptoms. Dr. Smith then diagnoses Melissa with mononucleosis (mono), a highly contagious viral infection. Melissa asks if she can play in the state championship game and Dr. Smith explains that it wouldn’t be safe. Dr. Smith tells Melissa that in addition to her sore throat, fever and rash, her spleen may be enlarged. If she sustained a blow to her spleen during the soccer game, it could rupture and she could bleed to death. Melissa is surprised that the “kissing disease” is so serious. Dr. Smith also tells her not to take aspirin for pain because mono has been associated with a serious illness called Reye’s syndrome. Melissa asks if a prescription for an antibiotic would help her get better. Dr. Smith says that it won’t help at all and, in fact, could cause her current rash to worsen.
Review Melissa’s Story: The physician is responsible for all of the following EXCEPT:
Diagnosing Melissa’s illness
Filling a prescription
Performing a physical exam
Ordering laboratory tests
Discussion Question: Melissa tells her soccer coach that she cannot play in the championship game. He decides to call Dr. Smith to confirm that Melissa has mononucleosis. What do you think Dr. Smith will tell Melissa’s soccer coach?
Dr. Smith will confirm Melissa’s diagnosis
Dr. Smith is unable to tell her soccer coach anything because of the HIPAA rule
Dr. Smith will tell her soccer coach that Melissa cannot play in the state championship because she could rupture her spleen
Dr. Smith will tell her soccer coach that Melissa’s condition is not serious and she is able to play in the game
Review Melissa’s Story: Why is an antibiotic not going to help cure Melissa’s mono?
Viral Infection: Infection caused by the presence of a virus in the body. Depending on the virus and the person’s state of health, various viruses can infect almost any type of body tissue, from the brain to the skin. Viral infections cannot be treated with typical antibiotics; in fact, in some cases the use of antibacterial antibiotics may cause side-effects that complicate the viral infection. The vast majority of human viral infections can be effectively fought by the body’s own immune system, with a little help in the form of proper diet, hydration and rest. ("Viral Infection." Medterms. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 July 2014.)
Spleen: An organ that is located in the upper-left part of the abdomen, not far from the stomach. It produces lymphocytes, which are important elements in the immune system. ("Spleen." Medterms. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 August 2014.)
Aspirin: A medicine that relieves pain and reduces fever. ("Aspirin." TheFreeDictionary.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 August 2014.)
Reye’s Syndrome: An extremely rare but serious illness that can affect the brain and liver, occurs most commonly in kids recovering from a viral infection. ("Reye Syndrome." KidsHealth. Ed. Yamini Durani. The Nemours Foundation, Oc Oct. 2011. Web. 05 August 2014.)
Antibiotic: A drug used to treat bacterial infections. Antibiotics have no effect on viral infections. Originally, an antibiotic was a substance produced by one microorganism that selectively inhibited the growth of another. Synthetic antibiotics, usually chemically related to natural antibiotics, have since been produced that accomplish comparable tasks. ("Antibiotic." Medterms. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 August 2014.)