In this period marked by the spread of COVID 19, Dr. David Samadi explains the facts, based on statistics and not on myths.
Fox News – Here now is Dr. David Samadi. He is St. Francis Hospital Director of Men’s Health. Thank you so much for joining us!
Dr. David Samadi – Thank you!
Fox News – It’s hard to know what to make of the different ways people are behaving. You know, as we just said there is still a five-hour line for a ride at Disney, a place you may think it would be majorly impacted by the coronavirus given that you are in such proximity and you have the opportunity not to go. But then, there are other people who are saying: well, there’s coronavirus in my town, in New York, for example, maybe I should pull my kids out of school. What do you think? I mean what’s the right amount of caution?
Dr. David Samadi – I think we need to be really smart about this. We need to be really vigilant and pay attention. The worst thing that can happen is the panic and fear. It’s the panic of the unknown because many times people at CDC and government basically are not always giving clear information because this virus sometimes behaves very differently than what we used to know and when people don’t have all the information they panic. In my field of prostate cancer or any kind of cancer, when the patients do not know where they’re headed, it’s panic and fear. Same thing with this virus. So I think we need to look at the statistics, Melissa. If we look at the “pandemic”, so a lot of scientists are not calling this a real pandemic because we are seeing this in 73 countries. When you look at the US, we only have about 129 cases and we have 10 deaths. So the risk to Americans today is very low. Are we going to see more numbers in the future? Are we going to see more deaths from this virus? Absolutely! And it’s going to get worse before it gets better. The good news for people to know is that the epicenter of this, in China and Wuhan, is slowing down, which is really great news for us.
Fox News – Yeah!
Dr. David Samadi – The travel ban that President Trump put in place was absolutely the best thing that he did because you are isolating the virus. And then, of course, the investment that is coming in, 7-8 billion that is going to this will bring all the screening tests. By having the ability to screen the patients we are able to diagnose them, isolate them, contain them and take care of this. So I do not want the public to be panicking about it. I think this will pass.
Fox News – What advice would you give if, let’s say, I feel like coming down with a cold? I know that the symptoms are respiratory, cough, fever. What would you tell me to do?
Dr. David Samadi – I think at the beginning you should observe because coronavirus is having very similar symptoms to flu symptoms. Fever is a big thing but if you are getting short of breath, if you are really having more symptoms of respiratory, you have difficulty with breathing, you should absolutely go get checked. The good news is that 80-90% of people that are coming with mild symptoms recover on their own. So, when we talk about these statistics, there are a lot of people out there who may be positive with coronavirus but may never know. We never get to see them and they basically heal on their own and they improve. So this is very important for people who have COPDs, asthma, people who are smoking, people from certain countries like Irina or China which have major pollution and also for nursing home patients, patients that have immune-compromised, HIV patients or if they are on steroids. These are the groups of people who really have to be very careful. Someone like you got forbid because if you get the virus you are gonna basically heal on your own and you are going to improve. But if you see your fever is going up, you have short of breath, things are getting worse, you have to go in and get checked. Absolutely!
Fox News – Is there anything you would avoid right now? Would you tell your family to avoid things?
Dr. David Samadi – Well, my children asked me whether we should be traveling or not and my answer was that we absolutely will go. I think wearing a mask is not gonna help us but somebody who is coming up with symptoms should wear it. I do not think this is really in a panic zone where you really have to change your whole life and be paralyzed. So we are gonna watch this. I think is gonna get better. We are gonna see more numbers of these cases but in 2 months from now, I think we are gonna be forgetting about this. This is my opinion.
Fox News – Dr. Samadi, thank you for coming. We appreciate it.