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Neglected Gram Positive Bacilli

By Christian Lopez-Padilla, MD

April 15th, 2021

Dr. Lopez discusses the gram positive rods/bacilli which are perhaps lesser well known to the clinician but have important clinical relevance nonetheless. He first discusses the classification system for these bacteria. He then descibes coryneform bacteria other than C. diphtheriae, such as C. jeikeium, which can cause both community-acquired and nosocomial infections. Next, Dr. Lopez discusses Bacilli other than B. anthacis. Erysipelothrix rhusiopathae is an example of this category. Next mentioned are anaerobic non-spore-forming gram-positive rods. Cutibacterium is an example of a pathogen producing infections associated with pustular skin eruptions and infections of implanted hardware. Anerobic spore-forming rods such as Clostridium are a major cause of human infections, including gas gangrene, C difficile, and others. In the end, the listener can easily be convinced that the spectrum of gram positive organisms are equally as diverse as the better known group of gram negative bacteria.

Great Mimics of Infectious diseases: A False Tale of Rashes and Fevers

By Zola Nlandu, MD

April 1st, 2021

Dr. Nlandu, Infectious Diseases Fellow at the University of South Florida, discusses noninfectious conditions that can mimic everyday infectious diseases diagnoses. He begins by discussing hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH), a life threatening clinical syndrome characterized by extreme immune system activation. Next, he covers Behcet’s disease, a form of vasculitis commonly manifesting as mucocutaneous disease. Familial Mediterranean Fever (FMF) is a rarely diagnosed syndrome seen in persons of Mediterranean descent that can mimic many infectious diseases conditions. Lastly, Adult Onset Still’s disease is a syndrome producing a triad of fever, arthrlagias, and a salmon-covered rash. The diagnosis and management options for each syndrome is characterized.

Covid-19 Updates: Viral Variants, Vaccines, and More

By Vivian Vega Rodriguez, MD

March 29th, 2021

Dr. Vivian Vega, Assistant Chief of Epidemiology at the James A Haley Veterans Hospital, presents an update on COVID 19 recorded on March 17, 2021. She begins by defining and discussing the topic of herd immunity, and recaps the progress that the US is making in vaccinations during the Spring. Next, she discusses global vaccine inequality, and how wealthier nations are preferentially vaccinating their populations at the expense of poorer nations, who cannot access vaccine supplies that are being gobbled up by resource rich countries. Next, Dr. Vega discusses viral variants, including the virus strains that are most likely to continue to emerge in the U.S. Lastly, Dr. Vega discusses vaccine strategies and future next generation COVID vaccines.

Mycobacterium abscessus in Florida: Epidemiology, Pathophysiology, and Research Implications

By Anthony Cannella, MD

February 22nd, 2021

Dr. Anthony Cannella, Assistant Professor of Medicine at the USF Division of Infectious Diseases and International Medicine, reviews Non-tuberculosis Mycobacteria, with a focus on Mycobacterium abscessus spp. Dr. Cannella begins his presentation by reviewing the microbiology and epidemiology of M. abscessus and their spectrum of disease. He then transitions to discussing the pathophysiology of how these infections occur as well as the pharmacologic options available for treating them. He closes by presenting the research implications of M. abscessus infections from the perspective of the immunological response and pharmacotherapeutic options.

Therapeutic Drug Monitoring: Aminoglycosides and Vancomycin

By Amanda Mercurio, PharmD

February 11th, 2021

Dr Amanda Mercurio, ID clinical pharmacist at the James A Haley Veterans Hospital, discusses the latest guidelines regarding the dosing and therapeutic drug monitoring of aminoglycosides and vancomycin. Dr. Mercurio begins by identifying the pharmacokinetic parameters for dosing antibiotic medications. She reviews the concepts of steady state and loading doses. She distinguishes between concentration dependent, AUC dependent, and time dependent dosing. She then discusses the unique pharmacokinetic parameters for aminoglycosides, including the benefits of extended interval dosing. Dr. Mercurio then goes through a step-by-step process for calculating aminoglycoside dosing based upon preferred nomograms. Next, Dr. Mercurio moves on to Vancomycin therapeutic modeling. In particular, she discusses the differences between older peak and trough-based dosing with the newer recommendations to dose based upon AUC modeling. Dr. Mercurio closes by going through a case-based example of dosing using the new guidelines.

Diabetic Foot Infections: Toe to Toe

By Richard L. Oehler, MD

January 28th, 2021

Dr. Richard Oehler, Professor of Medicine at the Division of Infectious Diseases, Morsani College of Medicine, presents an update in the management of diabetic foot infections for the 2020s. Dr. Oehler begins by introducing the concept of a multidisciplinary team as essential to the management of these patients. He then describes the current epidemiology of diabetes and diabetic foot ulcers. He also discusses Charcot arthropathy and how it occurs. Annual diabetic foot exams are also crucial to these patients, and Dr. Oehler also reviews proper techniques and what to ask/examine. Some of the newer hypotheses about the importance of biofilms to the creation and persistence of diabetic foot wounds are also presented. He also covers diabetic peripheral vascular disease, diagnostic imaging modalities, wound management, and the proper empiric antibiotic regimens and durations of therapy. Lastly, he discusses prevention techniques necessary to avoid recurrent ulceration.

Basic Principles of Antiretroviral Therapy for HIV

By Thomas Burkhead, MD

January 12th, 2021

Dr. Burkhead, infectious diseases fellow at the University of South Florida, covers HIV History, the development of HIV antiviral therapy, and current treatment strategies in this comprehensive update. Dr. Burkhead begins by reviewing the different classes of antiretrovirals. He then traces the chronological history of antiretroviral development, from the initial trials of AZT through the introduction of other NRTIs, Protease inhibitors, NNRTIs, and the Integrase inhibitors. Next, Dr. Burkhead discusses antiretroviral therapy in special situations, such as in those who are pregnant, have chronic kidney disease, or cardiac disease. Important antiretroviral mutations are also discussed. Lastly, Dr. Burkhead closes the talk by discussing future directions for antiretroviral therapy.

Syphilis: The Return of Corky the Killer

By John Toney, MD, FIDSA

January 4th, 2021

Dr. John Toney, Professor of Medicine at the James A Haley Veterans Hospital, reviews information about one of humanity’s greatest and most enduring scourges. Professor Toney begins by recalling the history of syphilis. He next relates the current epidemiology of syphilis in the US. The pathophysiology of syphilis is next discussed, as well as the manifestations of primary, secondary, and tertiary syphilis. The clinical manifestations of neurosyphilis are also reviewed. Lastly the association between syphilis and HIV is presented and therapy for syphilis is briefly covered.

Vaccinations During the COVID-19 Pandemic

By Shylah Moore-Pardo, MD

November 9th, 2020

Dr. Pardo, Infectious Diseases Physician and Ambulatory Care Provider at the James A Haley Veterans Hospital, discusses how to manage routine adult vaccinations during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. She first discusses the transmission of Coronavirus in vaccination settings and how to determine whether it is safe for patients to come in for vaccinations. She next discusses when the deferring of vaccination visits is appropriate, such as in those persons with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 disease. As we approach the winter season, Dr. Pardo shares information about the importance of influenza vaccination in all adult patients. Lastly, Dr. Pardo discusses catch up strategies for vaccination in pandemic delayed patients as well as reference sources for the clinician to access up to date vaccination recommendations.

Vaccine Hesitancy

By Jaela Fredenrich, PharmD

October 27th, 2020

Dr. Fredenrich discusses the origins and consequences of the vaccine hesitancy movement in this informative podcast. She begins by tracing back recent anti-vaccine sentiment to the now retracted 1998 Lancet article published by Dr. Andrew Wakefield and its initial origins to 19th Century London. She relates the decades-long success story of vaccines in reducing childhood and adult morbidity from vaccine preventable diseases such as measles, chicken pox, and polio. She identifies some of the factors that cause vaccine hesitancy among new parents. She then highlights some of the relevant laws relating to vaccine exemptions across the U.S. Next, Dr. Fredenrich mentions some of the falsely maligned components of vaccines that are commonly cited as a reason for parent reluctance. She also associates the significance of social media in producing vaccine sentiment among parents and adults. Lastly, she relates how medical providers can use their trusted influence with their patients and their families to help them make the right decisions about vaccines.