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Articles written by Andrew Ellsworth M.d.

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  • The Prairie Doc: It's time for your checkup

    Andrew Ellsworth M.D., The Prairie Doc|Feb 8, 2023

    Recently I received a mailing from my clinic reminding me it is time to schedule my annual preventative care physical. Apparently, doctors need to go to the doctor, too, even when they feel fine. As a primary care physician, one of my passions is preventative care. Preventative care is focused on catching problems before they even start to cause symptoms, catching issues early when they are easier to treat. Whether you want to call it your annual physical, your yearly checkup, or an annual wellness visit, this appointment gives the time for you...

  • The Prairie Doc: Bring home memories, not ticks

    Andrew Ellsworth M.D.|Jul 27, 2022

    Recently our family went on a camping trip. Our kids loved how we canoed our supplies across a lake and set up our campsite. My wife and I were reminded how much work it is. Soon our children were experiencing more mosquitos, flies, caterpillars, and ticks than they had ever seen before. On one of our lovely hikes, nearly every time I looked down, I found another tick crawling on my shoe or leg. Ticks love tall grass, wooded areas, and other moist and humid environments often close to the ground. Although you may find them on your head, they...

  • The Prairie Doc: It helps to share your story

    Andrew Ellsworth M.D., The Prairie Doc|Jun 8, 2022

    With the storm approaching, my wife texted me after work to come home right away. Within minutes, after I left the clinic, she called me again to tell me NOT to come home and to seek shelter immediately. At first, I thought I could make it home, but then the wall of wind hit, and a tree fell onto the road in front of me. I turned around and another tree blocked the way. Then it got so dark. It was disorienting and I turned on my windshield wipers using the fluid to try to clear the dust and mud off my windshield. That did not help. Thankfully,...

  • The Prairie Doc: Reach Out for that Lifeline

    Andrew Ellsworth M.D., The Prairie Doc|Nov 17, 2021

    Imagine yourself in a blizzard so thick and cold and blinding that you could not see your hands right in front of you. Such blizzards were common 150 years ago on the upper great plains. Without much for houses and trees, the wind blew the snow with such force that the little ice crystals were more like little knives making it hard to keep one’s eyes open even if there was something to see. Thus, to get safely from the house to the barn, farmers often hung a rope between the two, to not get lost. It was literally a lifeline. Otherwise, one w...

  • The Prairie Doc: Influenza Rare This Season

    Andrew Ellsworth M.D., The Prairie Doc|Mar 10, 2021

    Do you know anyone who had influenza this past year? Chances are you do not. Sure, plenty of people had the “stomach flu” with vomiting and diarrhea, otherwise known as gastroenteritis. Some people had colds and others had COVID-19. But cases of influenza this season have been exceptionally low. Starting a year ago, when someone came to my clinic with symptoms of influenza, including fevers, chills, muscle aches, or respiratory symptoms, we tested for both COVID-19 and for influenza. At first, every COVID-19 test was negative while many inf...