COVID-19 infections declined in Marin as schools in the county reopened for in-person learning last year, according to a new study.
The study, published last month in the peer-reviewed national medical journal Cureus, tracked attendance at 77 transitional kindergarten through eighth-grade Marin schools from Sept. 8, 2020, to Jan. 21.
Researchers found a correlation between having more students in class in person and lower COVID-19 rates in the community. That was in contrast to school breaks — such as Halloween and holiday time off in December — when cases spiked, said study co-author Dr. Michaela George, an epidemiologist and assistant professor at Dominican University of California in San Rafael.
“It shows that when schools follow the advice of their local public health officials and there is a good collaboration with local educators, kids can stay safe in the classroom,” George said…
Read the full article from the Marin Independent Journalhere. Read the Cureus article here.
Alexander Muacevic is the Medical Director of the European Cyberknife Center in Munich, Germany and holds an academic teaching position at the University of Munich Hospitals. Dr. Muacevic is a board-certified neurosurgeon and radiosurgeon and his main clinical and scientific interest is full body radiosurgery using advanced image-guided robotic technology. In addition to earning a European Neurosurgery Certificate, Dr. Muacevic has published over 100 scientific contributions including peer-reviewed articles, book chapters and congress proceedings. Dr. Muacevic is also a member of several academic societies and president of the International Radiosurgery Society containing over 700 members. Last, but not least, Dr. Muacevic is the Co-Founder and Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Cureus Journal of Medical Science.
Q: What was your first publishing experience like?
A: I started with smaller retrospective studies around Gamma Knife radiosurgery and I remember it was tough as a junior resident to fulfill all of the scientific standards.
Q: How did your relationship with Dr. John Adler begin?
A: We knew each other from neurosurgery meetings but got to work more closely together via the Radiosurgery Society and finally when we started our Cyberknife center in Munich in 2005.
Q: Has open science always been something you’ve been passionate about?
A: No, this developed over time and was based on frustrations in the conventional publishing world with more and more bureaucratic hurdles.
Q: In your opinion, what are the greatest challenges facing Open Access publishing?
A: Getting wide spread acceptance in the academic world.
Q: Is there anything about Cureus that you are particularly proud of?
A: Of course! We started from scratch over 10 years ago with only four people working to publish one article a month and now we have a much larger team and are publishing close to 10,000 articles this year. A great team effort and achievement!
Q: Do you have any advice for first-time authors?
A: Take your time, try to be precise and correct, and learn from more experienced people. Perhaps a simple case report with Cureus is the ideal introduction to the academic world.
Q: What are you looking for from Cureus peer reviewers?
A: A clear, concise and unbiased analysis of the paper in question.
Q: What is it like having Dr. Adler as a partner?
A: He is the best partner to have, as he is always open to strong arguments. I enjoy the fair battles we have behind the curtain to make Cureus a better journal each and every day.
Q: Why should researchers submit to Cureus?
A: Because it is the best and fastest way to get peer reviewed science out to the world. I might be biased but I don’t know any journal which is more comfortable and also fun to publish with.
Q: Are you currently working on any research? If so, what can you tell us about it?
A: We are working on multiple projects like SRS for Trigeminal Neuralgia, Meningiomas and Renal Cell Cancer.
Dr. John Adler is the Editor in Chief of the Cureus Journal of Medical Science and Dorothy and Thye King Chan Professor in Neurosurgery Emeritus at Stanford University.
In your opinion, what is wrong with the current system of medical publishing?
So much of publishing is presently geared towards a small elite community of academic physicians who understand the rules of the process and have the most time to engage in the publishing “game”. This means that the ideas from these academics, many of whom are not necessarily accomplished clinicians in the real world, are most widely circulated. Of course much of this process is intended to support the academic tenure process, which needs to create at least the illusion that certain ideas are innovative as opposed to merely being the product of an observant physician. Part of this stems from an excessive reliance on statistics.
Why are some slow to embrace the Open Access philosophy?
For the above reasons, academic physicians who have dominated journals for generations are loath to see publishing democratized. Democratization threatens their exclusivity/power in communicating medical science to the world.
What motivated you to start the Cureus Journal of Medical Science?
Having spent a lifetime in academia I could see that many truly clever, experienced and innovative physicians living in the trenches of medicine had no voice within the broader world of healthcare.
How do you measure success at Cureus?
The number, quality and reach of the articles we publish, as well as how engaged readers are with the content within.
Why should doctors and researchers publish in Cureus?
Cureus’ makes it easier and cheaper to publish a peer reviewed article than was ever possible before.
What makes a strong approval editor? What do the Cureus editors look for when critiquing medical science?
Ultimately Cureus’ most important duty is to our readers. It is somewhat ironic that Cureus’ responsibility to readers transcends that of our physician “customers”, with whom our editorial team primarily interacts. With this understanding in mind, I like it when an approval editor understand this hierarchy of accountability, approaching an article first and foremost from the reader’s perspective. Their job is not to kill/reject articles but to make sure that by reading carefully they suss out any “BS”, so that the reader has less work to do. Having said that every article, every time, by every reader should be approached with some measure of skepticism. There are no absolute truths in science. This is why our mantra is to publish “credible” science allowing the best science to “pass the test of time”.
Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy is one of the most recent scientific advancements in the field of hair restoration. It’s simple, painless and relies on activating your body’s own healing capacities. Here is what you need to know about this procedure:
What is Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy for beard hair loss?
PRP therapy has already been successfully used for some time in treating other conditions, such as muscle, bone or joint injuries. However, it was only recently that its benefits in promoting hair growth and restoration have been scientifically verified. This quick and easy procedure involves drawing a little bit of your own blood, then using a special centrifuge to separate the substances in it. Once the nutrient-rich platelets, which are great at promoting tissue growth are isolated, they are injected into the balding areas on your chin. This leads to better vascularization, tissue healing and regeneration, which means your reinvigorated follicles will start producing a thick and healthy-looking beard.
The procedure is no more painful than the sting of any injection, it is not invasive and carries no more risks than your average jab. Because it is your own blood that you are using, there is no chance of the body rejecting the platelets.
Who can benefit from PRP therapy for beard hair loss?
There is already mounting evidence that PRP can be very effective in treating androgenetic alopecia (male pattern baldness) in the beard area. However, new research indicates that it may also successfully treat alopecia areata of the beard – a relatively rare, auto-immune condition which leaves a pattern bald spots on your chin.
PRP therapy can also help treat beard loss caused by trauma (if the scarring is not too severe), by resolved skin issues, or by aging. However, it is unlikely that this procedure will yield good results if your hair loss is caused by beard trichotillomania (pulling out your beard hair when stressed), chemotherapy, untreated dermatological conditions, extensive scarring etc. If you are unsure what is causing your beard hair to fall out or would like to be certain that PRP is the right choice for you, do not hesitate to schedule an appointment with a dermatologist.
How much does PRP therapy for beard hair loss cost?
A good price-quality ratio, offered by the well-reputed Wimpole Clinic in London, starts at $449 per PRP session. Given that 3-4 sessions, spaced out 4 weeks apart are normally required, followed by a booster session after 6-12 months, you should probably consider setting aside around $2,000-3,000 for the procedure in the first year.
Editor’s Note: This blog post was sponsored and contributed by Wimpole Clinic.
When Covid first appeared in the US, several Asian physician friends had simple advice for me, “Wear a mask.” Having dealt with various coronaviruses for over a decade, this was the fundamental lesson taken from dealing with and controlling these respiratory viruses. Now, I may only be a dumb neurosurgeon, (said with humility, irony and in jest), but I know a thing or two about masks, having spent 30 years of life wearing them, sometimes for 12 or more hours at a time. There is nothing pleasurable about wearing a mask, but I have experienced first-hand how masks can protect patients and physicians from illness. More broadly I have seen how masks can protect healthcare workers from the worst of infectious diseases, even giving them supernatural-like protection when they must enter the belly of the beast while caring for highly contagious and fatal illnesses like Ebola. Meanwhile, each and every day, healthcare workers all over the world, including my own family members are able to avoid infection while caring for hospitalized Covid patients who are often spewing the virus everywhere. It’s incontrovertible – masks truly work!; they prevent Covid infections.
Double-blind and single-blind processes continue to dominate academic peer review. Too often this results in a ‘black box’ – a system without sufficient transparency for authors, readers and reviewers alike. Hopefully one day fully transparent (and even public) peer review will come to be seen as acceptable throughout the world of academic publishing. For now we must take small steps to break down this barrier, just as Cureus works to break down barriers to publication.
Matthew worked at Columbia University as both a research assistant in the field of cardiothoracic surgery and as a perfusionist with the heart and lung transplant team. He hopes to leverage his ongoing passion for the development and institution of medical technology into a career as a surgeon.
The New Yorker is the latest publication to pick up on the myriad of issues surrounding scientific publishing in their article Cleaning Up Science by Gary Marcus.
Science is no more immune to mistakes and dubious activity than any other discipline because in the end it involves humans. When you add the “publish or perish” pressure to the equation then issues are going to arise.
Introducing more efficient publishing models and systems of checks and balances helps minimize the kinds of issues John Ionnidis, MD of Stanford has revealed for years.
Curēus was created to better serve medical authors in a number of ways including the introduction of a more democratic form of scientific discovery. On Curēus the potential for politics is removed…reviewers are positioned to help an author improve his or her paper without giving this select group of reviewers the ability to “kill” a paper.
Paper quality is determined after a paper is published through our crowd-sourcing system called Scholarly Impact Quotient (SIQ). Authors also retain copyright and their papers are published quickly and at no cost.
For example, papers on Curēus may be rejected for the following reasons; scientific fraud, misleading or potentially clinically dangerous material, as well as obvious copyright violations.
In the end, we believe this open model for medical publishing not only better serves authors, but patients as well.
“The best science is cumulative, not just a list of fun results; as people push deeper, bad ideas that are invalid eventually crumble. Even if nothing changed, we would eventually achieve the deep understanding that all scientists strive for. But there is no doubt that we can get there faster if we clean up our act.” – The New Yorker
The San Francisco Chronicle interviewed John Adler, MD, Professor of Neurosurgery, Stanford University and Editor-in-Chief at Curēus. They were interested in our revolutionary concept of using crowdsourcing to evaluate and publish medical papers.
John Adler points out that “Nowadays, you wouldn’t go to a restaurant without Yelping it first. You wouldn’t go see a movie without seeing what Rotten Tomatoes had to say about it.”
Still for some reason the world of medical journals is stuck in a 200 year old paradigm. He has spent the last three years changing the status quo.
The Curēus model was created to expedite the process of medical publishing. An editorial board of experts will review submitted papers within days rather then months. But most of all, Curēus is moving medical journals into the open from behind pay walls.
“The average Joe has little to no access to the medical literature today,” Adler said. “It’s not right. It should be a human right.”
Although the idea of crowdsourcing seems revolutionary, Dr. Adler’s vision has been stirring for some time.
He writes in A New Age Of Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals that he founded Curēus “to address the challenges I have observed first-hand as an editor of numerous journals and an academic physician who has published and reviewed for years. We can do much better by authors, reviewers and certainly patients. This is the mission of Curēus.”