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Oak Street & Oregon Allergy Blog

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140818OSM helmesafety-smWhile driving and running around Eugene, I see a lot of people out riding bikes, many with helmets and many without. Good for you if you are one to always don head protection when hopping onto your bike. I often worry about the people who don’t.

When I see a patient for a check-up and we talk about preventive health measures, such as cancer screening, immunizations and checking cholesterol, I also ask about helmet use. This often catches people off guard, because it’s not something most doctors ask about. The truth is, wearing a helmet is an important yet easy way to prevent a catastrophic head injury. We should all — no matter what age or level of experience — wear helmets when cycling, in-line skating, skiing, snowboarding and even horseback riding.  


UgandaCollageUganda is a landlocked country of 37 million people located in the Nile Basin of East Africa. It is one of the poorest countries in the world and a nation with a sad history of suffrage under the dictatorship of Idi Amin and the brutality of the Lord’s Resistance Army.

It is a country in which there are only 2.3 physicians per 10,000 people, and the average life expectancy is just 57 years. Sixty-nine out of every 1,000 children will not live to see their 5th birthday.


140721osm raftingsafety smA great way to have fun and stay cool is to float the river on hot summer days. It's an enjoyable way to spend time with family and friends and a good reason to get outside and reconnect with nature.

Here are 10 tips to staying safe and being responsible on the river:


IMG950565 cropI am the luckiest grandfather in the world! My four “carefully planned” children have given me eight (soon-to-be nine) grandchildren. I just visited my oldest daughter, Molly, and her five children in Grafton, Wisconsin. It’s always great fun to see them.

Molly’s five children include Bryson, age 11, who is quite the basketball star; Cooper, age 10, who is a mathematical genius and can tell you stats on all the sports — he is amazing; Layla, age 8, who’s the only girl and a true princess — she’s also quite the gymnast and loves to show off her tumbling skills; and the twins, Holden and Griffin, age 6, who most certainly are not identical twins like their grandfather, Kirk, and great uncle, Kraig, or twin uncles David and Doug. These two are polar opposites in every way! Holden has a dark complexion, dark hair and eyes, while Griffin has a very light complexion, with blonde hair and blue eyes. And their personalities couldn’t be any more different. Holden is quiet and always has a twinkle in his eye and a smile on his face. Griffin, on the other hand, is the free spirit — full of curiosity and the most likely to follow me around whenever I’m doing “projects” around my daughter’s home. He is a visual learner, and can take things apart and put them back together, even at his young age. They are all unique, excelling in their own areas of interest and passion. I am truly amazed and impressed with each of them.


140622OSM peanutblog finalNew treatments may soon be available for patients with peanut allergy. For decades, our best therapy was identification, avoidance and treatment of reactions with epinephrine and antihistamine. But this could change with a new procedure called oral peanut desensitization.

While attending an allergy conference, I listened to a debate about peanut desensitization and whether it is helpful, safe and ready for the general public. An allergist from Lake Oswego, who is currently treating selected patients with desensitization, argued for it, while an allergist from Seattle argued against it.