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WINTER 2012

COMMUNITY MAGAZINE

Acres 0f Apples & Gallons of Cider... It’s The Delmont , Apples n Arts Festival


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Murrysville | Winter 2012 | incommunitymagazines.com 1


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INSIDE

IN Murrysville is a non-partisan community publication dedicated to representing, encouraging and promoting the Murrysville area by focusing on the talents and gifts of the people who live and work here. Our goal is to provide readers with the most informative and professional regional publication in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

IN Murrysville | WINTER 2012 |

10 INDUSTRY INSIGHTS

Splash Lagoon

Indoor Water Park Fun ............................... | 5

Sotak Insurance Agency Before The Winter Storm ........................... | 35 business spotlight

Mathnasium The Story Behind the Math ......................... | 31

on the cover | Westmoreland County residents enjoyed the annual Apples ’n Arts Festival. Photo: Gary Yon

SuperCuts Serving You and Your Community ............... | 44

UPMC TODAY

Health and Wellness News You Can Use | Winter 2012-13

FEATURES

Health & Wellness .............................. | 38

Stay Well This Winter Some people seem to sail through winter without a sniffle or a grumble. These simple steps may help you do the same: Spend some time in the fresh air, de-stress your holiday planning, wash your hands often, get plenty of sleep, and get a flu shot.

What’s Inside 2 3 4

In a Heartbeat Absent From Pain Butt Out: New Reasons to Quit Smoking Brittle Bones

5 6 7

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Shedding More Than Pounds Growing Up With Heart Disease We’re Here for You

© 2012 UPMC

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community interest

Murrysville Trail Alliance ................................................... | 8 Miracle Field Opens ............................................................. | 10 Delmont Apple ’n Arts Festival ....................................... | 12 All Pro Dad ............................................................................. | 14 Franklin Regional School District News ....................... | 16 UPMC Today | Health and Wellness News You Can Use ......... | 21 Mayor’s Letter ....................................................................... | 29 Chili Cook-Off Contest ....................................................... | 32 Winter Playground Program ............................................. | 33 Photo Contest News ........................................................... | 34 How I Met My Spouse ......................................................... | 36 Gingerbread Recipe ............................................................. | 45 Community Worship ............................................................ | 46 The Santa Watch ................................................................... | 48


At this time of year, I want to take the opportunity to thank you for taking the journey with us that was 2012. And while we’ve endured extremes of nature via the summer heat waves and Hurricane Sandy, as well as the onslaught of a presidential election that ate up any time available between our favorite shows, we still have much to be thankful for. Community Magazines continues to grow, and for that we thank you, our readers and our advertisers. Our readers help shape these magazines. Those of you who took the time to call, e-mail or write in with your ideas and events are the ones who set our table of contents. We pride ourselves on the fact that we listen to you and your ideas because, in the end, this is your community and you know it best. So I continue to encourage you to send in your ideas to our editor at pamela@incommunitymagazines.com. I wish to thank our advertisers for your continued support of Community Magazines. By advertising with us, you are supporting your community by underwriting the cost of the editorial content that those who read these magazines enjoy and look forward to each issue. Because of you, our readers can be entertained and informed. In this last issue before 2013, I urge our readers to support the advertisers who support your community magazine before you make your holiday gift lists. If you like this magazine, let them know and make a point to stop in their businesses. They’re not just trying to sell you something, they’re also your neighbors and community sponsors. I wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season and the best that 2013 has to offer!

Wayne Dollard Publisher

Miracles Happen Everyday... Have you or someone in your family ever experienced a miracle in your life? A check arrives from an unexpected source, just as the house was about to be foreclosed upon? Someone was healed, despite all odds and predictions? Or maybe you were reunited with someone by circumstances that were far too phenomenal to be called coincidence... If you have, we would love to hear your story and so would your friends and neighbors. Because at the end of the day, we could all use a little hope and encouragement. Miracles really do happen all the time! Please mail your story to: IN Community Magazines Attn. Pamela 603 East McMurray Road, McMurray, PA 15317 or you can email it to Pamela at: p.palongue@incommunitymagazines.com. Photos are welcomed with submissions, but not required. 4

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Spring Content Deadline: January 21


Murrysville | Winter 2012 | incommunitymagazines.com 5


IN Community Magazine is seeking nominations for its Community Awards for Service Excellence (C.A.S.E.) We know that what makes communities great are the special people who volunteer their time, talent and effort to help others. ICM would like to honor those special people, but we need your help. IN Community Magazines’ C.A.S.E. Dinner will recognize volunteers from each of ICM’s 36 magazines. Awardees will be selected in the following categories:

Volunteer of the Year; Youth Volunteer of the Year (21 years and younger); Small Nonprofit of the Year (staff of 10 or less); Large Nonprofit of the Year (staff of 11 or more). Awardees and those who nominated them will be honored at the awards dinner in Spring 2013. During the dinner an awardee from the Volunteer of the Year and Youth Volunteer of the Year categories will be selected to receive a donation for his or her chosen charity.

Name of nominee_____________________________________________________________________________________ Address:____________________________________________________________________________________________ Phone:_____________________________________________ Email:____________________________________________ Category (circle one): Volunteer of the Year, Youth Volunteer of the Year (21 years and younger); Small Nonprofit (staff of 10 or less); Large Nonprofit (staff of 11 or more) Which IN Community Magazine is this nomination for?____________________________________________________________ Name of person submitting nomination_______________________________________________________________________ Address:____________________________________________________________________________________________ Phone: ____________________________________________ Email: ___________________________________________ Why are you nominating this person or nonprofit organization? (Please submit a type written statement of no more than 600 words.) Send nomination form and statement to: Monica Haynes, IN Community Magazines, 603 E. McMurray Road, McMurray, PA 15317 If you have any questions, pleasecontact Monica Haynes at 412.254.8704 Deadline for nominations is 12/31/2012. 6

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EASY HOMEMADE

CHOCOLATE HOT

1 cup of milk (per serving) 2 squares of milk chocolate In a cup, place 2 squares of milk chocolate. Heat the cup in the microwave for 35 seconds. Once melted, blend in 8 oz. of milk (a cup). Mix together until well blended. Heat in the microwave for another 45 seconds or until the hot cocoa is well heated. That’s it‌ Enjoy!

Murrysville | Winter 2012 | incommunitymagazines.com 7


Hot On Your Trail

with the Murrysville Trail Alliance By Judith Schardt

“A vigorous five-mile walk does more good for an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world.”

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—Paul D. White (Cardiologist and co-founder of the American Heart Association)

n your lifetime, you will walk about 65,000 miles — that’s almost three times around Earth! People have walked to earn money for charities and have run in marathons since 1896. Men have even walked on the moon. What is the gain of such activity? Exercise beats stress, helps you lose weight, helps with addictions and allows time for fresh air and a chance to escape the demands of a hectic daily life. The Murrysville Trail Alliance (MTA) is a nonprofit group of volunteers working to advance facilities and opportunities for recreational trail use in Murrysville. Members’ interests span all types of trail-based recreation, including hiking, mountain biking, cross-country skiing, walking, running, bicycling and other forms of human powered transportation. They plan trail walks and trail workdays to promote and develop new trail spaces. The organization’s mission is: “Building trails to strengthen the community

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through the promotion, development, maintenance, and use of interconnected trails and greenways in Murrysville.” The American way of life has changed and affects how much people can participate in and enjoy recreational opportunities. Longer workdays, over-scheduled youth and consumption of time by video games, the Internet and TV are discouraging people from enjoying traditional forms of recreation. Plus, with ever-improving technology, fitness equipment is becoming more sophisticated, eliminating the need to leave your house for a great workout. However, families are missing something: connecting with each other and experiencing the enjoyment of the great outdoors. They need the freedom and fresh air that hiking a good trail or biking on a path through the woods can bring. Recreation helps address a host of social issues as well, including


youth development and reducing the isolation of the elderly. Money is tighter these days, so finding inexpensive ways to spend time relaxing with family or friends

is becoming more important than ever. Over the past two years the MTA has donated books and materials about trail building to the Murrysville Community Library, to help build a collection of reference materials. The members want Murrysville to be recognized for the exceptional quality of its outdoor spaces. The parks and recreation system serves 20,000 residents by offering 1,360 acres of park land in more than a dozen parks and open spaces; a community center that fosters social interaction, play and community activity; and various recreation opportunities, including several sports fields. The MTA’s meetings are open to the public and anyone interested in trail-based recreation in Murrysville is welcomed and encouraged to bring new thoughts and ideas. The cost of operating a car for one year is approximately $5,170. The cost of operating a bicycle for a year is only $120. Walking is free! So start walking. There are plenty of trails to challenge every level of fitness ability. For more information on the Murrysville Trail Alliance, please contact Chairman Betsy Aiken at 724.325.4026 or baaiken@infionline.net.

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M

iracle Field, a field specifically designed for children and adults with special needs, opened September 8 in Murrysville. The 4.5-acre complex consists of a Miracle Field for baseball with wheelchair accessible dugouts and a flat pitching mound, concession stand, restrooms, pavilions and a free game field, assembled by volunteers, for basketball, bocce ball and shuffleboard. The complex also has a walking path with a grade of less than five percent and a playground that is fully accessible in order to provide recreational opportunities for senior citizens and families. The Murrysville-Export Rotary Club worked diligently with the municipality of Murrysville and the Miracle League of Western Pennsylvania to make this possible. As with any project of this magnitude, fundraising was the key to get the project approved and completed. The Buncher Family Foundation donated an astounding $250,000 for the project, and an additional $250,000 when the project reached its fundraising goal of $1.7 million. Other

generous contributions were made by both UPMC East and UPMC Health Plan, the Pittsburgh Pirates and private citizens of Murrysville and surrounding communities. Patty Paytas, vice president of community and public affairs for the Pittsburgh Pirates, explained why the Pirates were elated to be involved in Murrysville’s Miracle Field. “We got involved for a number of reasons. First, we are a baseball team and we love baseball. We want kids to play baseball, kids

• Opens in Murrysville •

By Matthew J. Fascetti • Photos by Gary Yon 10

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of all abilities,” she said. “Many of these kids never played baseball before because they have never had the opportunity. The organization was very passionate about the project and our owner Bob Nutting was very passionate about it and gave us the resources to help. These fields do a great deal for the communities they are in.” The Pirates first got involved with the Miracle League program in 2009. The Murrysville field is the fifth one they have been involved in; they previously assisted with fields in Cranberry Township, the South Hills, Wheeling, West Virginia, and Bradenton, Florida, where the Pirates hold spring training. In addition to financial support, the Pirates contribute to the fields by promoting the Miracle League program as well as hosting additional activities for the kids in the community, such as fantasy camps where the kids can meet some of the players. According to Nick Dorsch, president of the MurrysvilleExport Rotary Club, the initial idea for the Miracle Field began seven years ago when a child with special needs and his parents approached the club about an accessible baseball field. “After being approached by this family, we did research to see the best way to go about this,” he explained. “After looking into the Miracle Field concept, we decided it would be great for the community, but we also knew we wanted it to be used by adults with special needs, not just children. That is why our field is 20 percent larger than a regulation Little League field in order to accommodate adult participants.” Dorsch also emphasized how important the other aspects of the complex are, particularly the playground and the multi-field. “Many families with a special needs child have other children without special needs, so it was important to have a place where the whole family could come and spend quality time together,” he said. The Rotary Club was involved in all aspects of the project, but the main focus was the design and the securing of donations to meet the $1.7 million fundraising goal. Dorsch says the Rotary Club was thrilled to be a part of the project, and it has been personally satisfying for him as well. “The Rotary Club does many projects, and when this began it was just another project. But as I started working on it, it became a passion. It is something I looked forward to every day. It is a great feeling to help make a project like this become a reality.” Through the diligence and dedication of many people, the community of Murrysville has an outstanding facility for children and adults with special needs and their families. This complex is something Murrysville can be proud of for many years to come. For more information about the Miracle League program, visit www.miracleleague.com.

Murrysville | Winter 2012 | incommunitymagazines.com 11


Delmont

Apple ’n R

esidents from all over Westmoreland County and beyond, flocked to the 2012 Delmont Apple ‘n Arts Festival October 6 - 7. Besides an ocean of fresh apple cider and bushels of apples in all varieties, the event included an apple baking contest and a Baby Apple Cheeks contest for kids age three months to three years to decide, once and for all, who had the most adorable blushing cheeks. Entertainment was provided by Shane & The Rockolas, with classic rock from the 50s, 60s and 70s and High Ryder, a country band. The Dogwood Bluegrass Gospel Band had everyone tapping their toes to the down-home tunes and Christ Denum presented a Neil Diamond tribute.

Phot os by

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Gary Yon


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murrysville

Resident Profile

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hree years ago a job transition made local father Matthew Olszewski reevaluate his priorities. He decided he wanted to spend more quality time with his children, as well as make a difference for all local youth. As he was researching different ways he could do this, he found the All Pro Dad program. Olszewski signed up on the website to become a captain, but at first didn’t do anything with it. Then another local father, Chris McCormick, visited the website and saw that Olszewski was registered as a captain. He suggested Olszewksi start All Pro Dad in the local schools, and, after making arrangements with the schools, he did just that in 2009. All Pro Dad is Family First’s innovative program helping men become better fathers. AllProDad.com is a one-stop resource where dads can find encouragement, ideas, information and videos. The site contains hundreds of articles and top-10 lists to help dads engage their children in fun and creative ways. Dads can also connect with one another through Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. The Play of the Day is where fathers can go to get hard-hitting, concise, helpful and free information on how to be a better dad. The Play of the Day daily email goes out to 70,000 fathers each day and it’s the most read daily fatherhood e-mail in the world. You can subscribe via email or check out All Pro Dad’s blog for the latest post. Olszewski started off at Sloan Elementary, focusing on a monthly one-hour breakfast held before school where fathers and their children meet with other dads and their children. During this time they discuss a wide range of family topics, spend quality time together, create fun memories and are equipped with resources to strengthen relationships. Now more than ever, a strong family commitment is needed not only with schools but at home…this is what All Pro Dad is all about. The program has since expanded to the other two elementary schools in the district, Heritage and Newlonsburg. Olszewski is excited about how much progress the program 14

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Local Father Brings “All Pro Dad” to Franklin Regional School District By Matthew J. Fascetti

has made in a short amount of time. “It has been amazing to watch and be a part of this group,” he said. “The growth we have seen has been awesome. I have seen an important transformation take place within the schools, our community and the hearts of the fathers and their families. We have had growth in attendance, local companies and dads provide breakfast sponsorships and raffle donations…we have even had guest speakers such as former Pittsburgh Steeler Jeff Hartings.” While All Pro Dad is focused on elementary school children, it is tied in closely with S.O.S. (Serving Other Souls) which is a middle school program. S.O.S is an afterschool student-driven program that shares similar values with All Pro Dad, focusing on family, serving the community and teaching respect and responsibility to children. They work with Ronald McDonald House, even delivering goods there during the holiday season. Chris Cooley, a teacher at the middle school, leads the S.O.S. program. The ultimate goal of both organizations, and what Cooley and Olszewski will continue to strive for, is to get people more involved and spread the principles of compassion, empathy and responsibility. “I am proud to be a small part of this. But it’s really all the dads and their children that make the program a great success,” Olszewski added. Everything starts at home as the old saying goes. All Pro Dad believes this and strives to help dads build stronger relationships with their children. There is nothing in the world more important than that. Those interested in getting involved in the Franklin Regional All Pro Dad program may call Matthew Olszewski at 412.780.7560. For more information on the Serving Other Souls program, you may visit the website www.servingothersouls.org.


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FRANKLIN REGIONAL s c h o o l

d i s t r i c t

Superintendent’s message MISSION STATEMENT: We, the Franklin Regional School community, strive for excellence, learning, achievement and citizenship in all we do.

Dr. P. Emery D’Arcangelo Superintendent Shelley Shaneyfelt Director of Instructional Services and Public Relations Marlena Buterbaugh Director of Human Resources Jon C. Perry Director of Financial Services Linda Miller Assistant to the Director of Financial Services Brad Schrecengost Supervisor of Technology Services Dennis Majewski Director of District Services Zachary Kessler Director of Athletics & Student Activities Richard E. Regelski, Jr. Director of Special Education Allan Mikach Director of Counseling Services

At this time each school year, we are proud to publically share the academic accomplishments of our student scores on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) as compared to the State results. The results of these assessments are outlined annually in a “District Report Card” on the District’s website (www.franklinregional.k12.pa.us) and on Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) website (www.education.state.pa.us). The Federal No Child Left Behind Act requires states to determine annually whether schools and districts in Pennsylvania make Adequate Yearly Progress, also known as AYP. Students are identified as performing in one of four levels: advanced, proficient, basic and below basic. The goal is for all students to be proficient or advanced – meaning that they have mastered Pennsylvania’s assessment anchor content standards at their grade level. Last year, the 2011-12 state targets for meeting AYP were 78% combined proficient and advanced percentage scores in math and 81% combined proficient or advanced percentage scores in reading. The Franklin Regional School District’s overall test scores were 88% advanced and proficient in math, and 88% advanced and proficient in reading. If a school district has a sub-group of forty (40) or more students in one grade span, that sub-group must also meet the same State target

Karen Cadwell School Board Secretary/ Executive Assistant to the Superintendent Ronald Suvak, Principal Senior High School Chris Kelly, Principal Middle School Robert Buffone, Principal Heritage Elementary Tina Gillen, Principal Newlonsburg Elementary Tina Burns, Principal Sloan Elementary

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numbers. At the Middle School, the sub-group of students who have an Individual Education Plan (IEP) did not achieve AYP, therefore, the Middle School is on the State’s warning list for not meeting the target. Individual student PSSA scores have been provided to each respective school building and to individual families and are used to assist teachers in identifying students who may be in need of additional educational support. District scores, building level scores and grade level scores provide critical information that is used for curriculum and instructional improvements. The information below indicates the percentage of students at Franklin Regional who have scored at the combined Advanced and Proficient levels on the 2012 Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) in comparison to Pennsylvania State (PSSA) Scores of other school districts. We would like to “congratulate” the students and staff at Franklin Regional for achieving at a high level across our school district. We are extremely proud of our students and staff. Thank you for supporting Franklin Regional! Sincerely, Dr. P. Emery D’Arcangelo, Superintendent Franklin Regional School District


Kids Helping Kids

Gives Back to the Community By Matthew J. Fascetti

reek playwright Sophocles once said, “To be doing good deeds is man’s most glorious task.” Another famous quote is, “No good deed goes unrewarded.” Both sayings apply to the kids involved in the Kids Helping Kids Club at Franklin Regional High School. The goal of Kids Helping Kids is to assist both local and global youth communities in need while providing students with opportunities to serve their peers. This year the program is sponsored by Social Studies teachers Samantha Westerlund and Katie Rutherford. Westerlund is in her seventh year of sponsorship. Kids Helping Kids is an after school activity that requires students to put in at least six hours of volunteering each school year; many students put in more hours. The club averages about 60 students per year participating. In addition to the teacher sponsors, student officers include: Senior Taylor Miller, President; Senior Kaitlin Seaman, Vice President; Sophomore Natalie Hoffman, Treasurer; Sophomore Emily Bondi, Secretary. The club is a tightknit group that loves to work together, and every student involved has a great attitude and volunteer spirit. The club works on many different projects throughout the year including book drives, hat and glove drives for

the needy, Franklin Idol, donations for tornado victims, food bank donations, the Children’s Bureau and more. In addition, the big event each year is the Holiday Telethon, which is aired locally on Channel 19. The telethon features monetary donations, gift baskets and other items of need. The club gets tremendous help with the Telethon from the Media Department at the high school, led by Media teacher Becky Magness and her dedicated students. This year’s telethon will be held on December 21st. The telethon annually raises around $10,000 for those in need in Westmoreland County. Westerlund is very proud of her students. “It’s great to get a chance to work with kids outside of the classroom as they volunteer their time to serve those in need,” she said. “I am thrilled to be a part of a great cause, as well as watch these kids grow and mature through the giving process. The community should be very proud of these students and teachers who dedicate their time and give of themselves to help others. The world is a better place due to giving back. We should all follow their lead.” If you are interested in learning more about the club, or if you wish to donate, please email Westerlund at swesterlund@franklinregional.k12.pa.us or you may call 724.327.5456, x5210.

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Girl Scouts

Recycle

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hat started as a project for a Girl Scout badge turned into a community-wide recycling effort through the hard work of a young girl and her friend. Grace Kozuch, 13, and her mother, Karen, believe the people in their Murrysville neighborhoods should care about recycling. So when Grace had to think of a project for her Girl Scout Silver Award about a year ago, she decided that she’d find some recycling bins and convince officials in the Franklin Regional School District that they should use them. Since the Kozuch family spent a lot of time at the high school stadium, they decided to start there. They noticed that garbage cans after football games were full of plastic water bottles. After talking to neighbors, they found someone employed at Pepsi Co. who arranged the donation of three recycling bins. But that was just the start. “It was amazing how much time we spent,” Karen recalled. It wasn’t as easy as putting bins out for use. People didn’t know how to use them and school officials complained that they were filled with garbage. It was clear that people needed some education. Grace designed posters to explain what the bins were for and how to use them. Soon, the project mushroomed: one day Grace came home and told her mother that she noticed plastic water bottles and others in the garbage at the middle school. “We talked to teachers and the principal,” Karen said. Grace made posters to get the students’ attention and educate them on how to recycle and why it’s important. She also made videos 18

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to play during morning announcements that air over televisions in every room. After researching on the Internet for facts on recycling, Grace made the messages eye-catching with the use of graphics and color to get attention. “It’s [taken] long hours,” Karen said. “It got to be a huge project.” Eventually Grace enlisted the help of friend and fellow Girl Scout Allison Simpkins. They expanded the project to the high school tennis courts, the middle school library and teachers’ lounge. They got recycling into the Newlonsburg, Heritage and Sloan elementary school cafeterias and teachers’ lounges and the Mother of Sorrows School cafeteria. Then they set their sights on the Murrysville Community Park soccer fields, Miracle Field, and Veterans Field where soccer and football are played. “It has been a ton of work,” Karen said. Grace and Allison got their silver awards and much more. “I feel like I did something good in my youth,” Grace said. She put more than 70 hours into the project (only 50 were required for the badge), and she’s not done yet. She plans to continue to educate young people on the benefits of recycling. “I’m glad because lots of kids can recycle now [at school], like at home.” Allison said the project was fun. “I enjoyed it. I’m just happy to be introducing recycling to people who might take [the idea] to their homes and start recycling there, and to spread the idea to other people in our (school) district.” She added that their Girl Scout troop leader would send e-mails to them saying that she was “amazed at what we’re doing and that we’re helping a lot of people.”


District Leading In Responsible Energy Consumption

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he Franklin Regional School District, through the implementation and utilization of emerging energy technologies, has been a leader in responsible and efficient energy consumption in the area for the past 35 years and continually strives for improvement. The District’s general fund budget for 20122013, which was approved in June, listed an estimated expenditure of just under $4.37 million for the operation and management of plant services—a $40,000 decrease from the previous fiscal year. The reduction in taxpayer spending is the result of the District’s concerted efforts to implement high-efficiency, low-cost energy consumption programs throughout the years, according to Director of District Services, Dennis Majewski. “We’ve always had a general policy to be as economically efficient as possible without sacrificing environmental responsibility,” Majewski said. “That’s done through a great deal of planning and the use of new technologies available in the market.” Among the cost and energy saving programs recently implemented within the school district is the direct digital control of the buildings’ heat, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. This allows District Services to control the temperature of each classroom throughout the District via an off-site central computer. The direct digital control is used to uniformly lower ventilation output to conserve energy during off hours and bring it back up prior to the students’ arrival. The facilities’ light fixtures were another target in the District’s eco-friendly initiative. Each gymnasium’s mercury-based metal lights were replaced with T5 fluorescent tubes, and the overhead classroom lights were reinstalled with T8 fluorescent bulbs. The internal gasses in the new light fixtures account for 25 percent more efficiency and are equally brighter in proportion.

The District has improved the HVAC systems in each of its buildings with new roof-based air conditioning units, as well. The new models are more efficient in the way they evaporate and condense air for cooling, according to Majewski. The Franklin Regional School District also installed new boilers that operate on natural gas. With 92 percent efficiency, the boilers use less gas to create the same amount of energy as the models used in previous years. The buildings have been retrofitted with dual- and triplepaned windows which don’t leak as much air as traditional single-panes, creating additional energy efficiency. According to Majewski, the average school costs $2.25 per square foot in energy consumption to maintain. Newly constructed buildings, which are designed to minimize consumption, need only about $1.80; most school districts average out at $2.60. Franklin Regional spends about $2.15 per square foot. “We’re not as good as the new ones, but they’re already at such an advantage, and we’re a heck of a lot better than most in the region,” the District Services Director said. “We have one building that’s 83 years old, and that’s a challenge in itself.” Franklin Regional’s energy costs are also low, in part, due to recently negotiated long-term contracts with their gas and electric suppliers. The District recently accepted competing bids from FirstEnergy Corporation for its electric supply and Equitable Gas for the boilers. While the School District’s 21st century approach to energy consumption serves as a model for affordable and highly efficient energy planning in the region, Majewski said only a few of the surrounding districts are following their lead and implementing low-cost, responsible energy programs.

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dent Am u t S ba ssad o r Franklin Regional Middle School Student Ambassador Program Helps Ease Transition from Elementary School

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or many children, the transition from elementary to middle school can be fraught with anxiety and fear. Some kids may be nervous about switching classes or meeting new teachers or classmates; others may stress over the increased academic demands of middle school classes. Moreover, with an ever-growing spotlight shining on the seriousness of bullying, there perhaps has never been a more critical time for educators to focus on ways to help students navigate the uncertain path from elementary school. It is for these reasons and more that Franklin Regional Middle School launched the Middle School Student Ambassador Program. According to Assistant Principal Kristi Loyal, the program is designed to help new students, families and other middle school visitors feel welcome. Loyal oversees the program along with middle school counselors Debra Pundai, Brian Coiner and Jill Huffman. “Students at this age are more likely to be influenced by their peers,” said Loyal. “The idea is to foster a safe, positive and productive learning environment for our students.” The program was introduced eight years ago by former middle school principal Shelley Shaneyfelt, who, according to Loyal, felt that the school’s existing peer mediation program should be enhanced to focus more on bullying prevention. Today, the program is comprised of 12 to 15 students for each of the students’ sixth, seventh, and eighth grade levels. “The program is well-known and the group is highly regarded. Many students apply to the program each year, and are actively pursuing participation,” Loyal said. Students who are interested in becoming a Student Ambassador must submit an application to the middle school counseling department. Students are then selected through an anonymous process. Loyal said that the applications are rated by staff members through a series of questions that are designed to assess a student’s leadership qualities.

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Once they are accepted into the program, Student Ambassadors must complete extensive training throughout the summer and during the school year as well. They are required to maintain regular communication with new students, especially at the beginning of the school year. “Students are trained on a variety of topics, including bullying prevention and terminology, as well as mentor roles and orientation leader roles,” said Loyal. Last year, the school brought in trainers from the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, a renowned anti-bullying program that is specifically designed for students in elementary, middle and junior high schools. The Olweus staff first trained a committee of Franklin Regional High School students who, in turn, trained the middle school’s Student Ambassadors. Following these trainings, the Student Ambassadors then visited Franklin Regional elementary schools to engage students in bullyingprevention discussions. Student Ambassador Nina Rosporski, who is now a Franklin Regional ninth grader, knows the strength of the program firsthand. “We learned what bullying really was and how to prevent it,” she said. “We tried to reduce bullying in their [elementary students’] schools. We gave examples of bullying for each grade level and helped them decide what was right and wrong.” Rosporski said that in addition to the Olweus training, she enjoyed talking to new students and helping to plan anti-bullying events for the entire school. “We helped the fifth graders by going into their classes and asking them what scared them about the middle school. We helped them overcome insecurities,” she said. Loyal said that she is proud of how engaged her students are in the process. “Our students embrace the responsibility. We require them to stay caught up on schoolwork and they do. The great thing is, once they are trained, our students branch off and use and hone their leadership skills,” she said. While the issues that surround and drive the Student Ambassador program may be complex, the purpose, according to Rosporski, is a simple one: “We want to make students feel more welcome and make the school a better place to be.”


UPMC TODAY

Health and Wellness News You Can Use | Winter 2012-13

Stay Well This Winter Some people seem to sail through winter without a sniffle or a grumble. These simple steps may help you do the same: Spend some time in the fresh air, de-stress your holiday planning, wash your hands often, get plenty of sleep, and get a flu shot.

What’s Inside 2 3 4

In a Heartbeat Absent From Pain Butt Out: New Reasons to Quit Smoking Brittle Bones

5 6 7

Shedding More Than Pounds Growing Up With Heart Disease We’re Here for You

© 2012 UPMC

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In a Heartbeat

UPMC East is cutting minutes and saving lives by opening blocked arteries in record time.

James Colwell was relaxing after building a retaining wall when he began to feel pressure in his chest, along with nausea and sweating. He didn’t think it was a heart attack but told his daughter to drive him to UPMC East, located just 10 minutes from his Penn Hills home. “It turns out I was having a major heart attack. If I had waited any longer or traveled to a hospital farther away, they may have been calling the undertaker,” says James, 75, who works full time as an independent broker heading up the Colwell Agency.

Door-to-balloon time National guidelines call for hospitals to perform an angioplasty within 90 minutes — starting from the moment a patient enters the hospital until the balloon is inflated and blood flow is restored. According to Dr. Aziz, since UPMC East opened in July all procedures have been performed within those guidelines — most of them in less than 60 minutes. “Time is critical. The sooner we restore blood flow through the arteries, the less damage there will be,” says Dr. Aziz. UPMC East has a team of heart doctors, nurses, and specialists on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week to treat serious heart conditions. One reason the door-to-balloon time is so impressive is because so many team members live near the hospital, enabling a team to assemble within 20 minutes. “Our location makes it easier — and faster — for patients and their families to get here. It’s easier for our response team to get here, too,” says Dr. Aziz.

An obvious choice James says going to UPMC East was an “obvious choice.” “I wouldn’t go anywhere else but UPMC. I’m just glad I didn’t have to get on the Parkway East and head into town,” he says. “When you’re having a heart attack, or any emergency, the quicker you can get to an emergency room, the better off you are.”

He was rushed to the cardiac catheterization lab where Abdulrab Aziz, MD, chief of cardiology at UPMC East, and a team of nurses and technicians jumped into action. Dr. Aziz quickly restored blood flow with a balloon angioplasty and stent. James felt immediate relief — less than an hour after first experiencing symptoms. He had survived a blockage in his left anterior descending artery, which is a major artery to the heart. Blockages there are often fatal.

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UPMC East’s connection with the renowned UPMC Heart and Vascular Institute means patients have access to internationally acclaimed experts, as well as sophisticated life-saving treatments, and technology. While the hospital provides a full range of noninvasive diagnostic imaging, catheterizations, and emergency interventions, patients needing open heart surgery, such as a coronary bypass or valve replacement, are transferred to UPMC Shadyside or UPMC Presbyterian for treatment. Because UPMC East’s cardiologists also are on staff at those hospitals, patients continue with the same physician for follow-up care. “That continuum of care is very important and appreciated by patients,” says Dr. Aziz. To schedule an appointment with one of our cardiologists, visit UPMC.com/FindADoctor, or call toll-free 1-800-553-UPMC (8762).


Absent From Pain Most of us think of anesthesiology as the medical specialty that “puts you to sleep,” but it’s really all about pain relief.

internal medicine, pharmacology, and surgery. Many also pursue subspecialty training in such areas as pain medicine, and pediatric, cardiothoracic, or obstetric anesthesia. In today’s complex surgical suites, anesthesiologists lead an entire team of skilled professionals, which can include a certified registered nurse anesthetist, resident physician, student nurse anesthetist, and anesthetist assistant. “It’s a true team effort, with each member playing a distinct role in delivering patient care,” says Dr. Williams. Anesthesia’s role in health care extends far beyond the operating room. Anesthesiologists offer pain management in a variety of settings, enhancing the daily lives of patients with chronic diseases or complex medical conditions.

Getting to know you For minor operations, you’ll typically meet your anesthesiologist at the hospital, shortly before surgery. For major surgeries, you will be asked to participate in a pre-surgery consultation. “With patients who live at a distance, we’re now using telemedicine to conduct pre-op visits,” says Dr. Williams. “It allows us to get to know you, address your questions and concerns, review options, and determine if any additional tests or consultations are needed.”

What to tell your anesthesiologist

Anesthesia makes possible some of modern medicine’s greatest miracles. Can you imagine undergoing surgery without it? The father of Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes is generally credited with bringing the term into popular use in 1846, though references to anesthesia can be traced back to 1741. The term is based on a Greek word meaning “lack of sensation.” “Anesthesiology uses medicine to eliminate your ability to feel pain or other sensations,” explains John Williams, MD, the Peter and Eva Safar Professor and chair of the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Anesthesiology. “Your anesthesiologist partners with your surgeon to manage your vital functions before, during, and after surgery. Everything from breathing, heart rate and rhythm, blood pressure, body temperature, blood clotting, and fluid loss is consistently monitored.”

A team of professionals Anesthesiologists are physicians who complete four years of residency after finishing medical school. Their extensive preparation includes training in cardiology, critical care medicine,

Prior to surgery, you’ll be asked to provide information about yourself. “Be candid and comprehensive. What you share will be held in strict confidence,” advises Dr. Williams. Be sure to include the following: • Previous reactions you or other family members have had to anesthesia • Any food, medicine, or latex allergies you have • Prescription, over-the-counter, or herbal medications you take • Your use of alcohol or recreational drugs

Did You Know? There are four basic categories of anesthesia: Local: Numbs a small, specific part of your body Regional: Numbs a larger area of your body, usually below the waist Twilight: Sedates and provides pain relief General: Renders you unconscious

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Health Tips from UPMC Health Plan

Butt Out Despite dire health warnings, one out of five Americans still smokes. If you’re one of them, here are some new reasons to crush that butt. Before you light up your next cigarette, consider this: With every puff, you’re inhaling more than 7,000 chemicals. Hundreds of them are poisonous, and about 70 can cause cancer. And no organ or tissue in the body is immune to this toxic cloud. Most people know that cancer, heart disease, and lung disease are major health threats caused by smoking. But are you aware that smoking increases your risk of getting diabetes by 44 percent? That’s just one of the not-so-obvious reasons to put that butt out. Here are five more. 1. See the difference. If you smoke, your risk of age-related macular degeneration, a leading cause of blindness, doubles. Smokers also have double the risk of developing cataracts.

Brittle Bones Osteoporosis is quickly becoming a national health care concern.

It’s estimated that 10 million Americans now have osteoporosis and 34 million are at risk. Whether you’re young or old, male or female, chances are good that you — or someone you love — will be affected by the disease. “In osteoporosis, your bones become thin and brittle, putting you at increased risk of a bone fracture,” says Susan Greenspan, MD, UPMC’s director of osteoporosis prevention and treatment. “In advanced stages, simple acts like lifting a baby or sneezing can lead to a fracture.” Here are four facts everyone should know about osteoporosis: 1. Osteoporosis can appear at any age. But after the age of 50, one out of every two women — and one out of every four men — are likely to experience a fracture due to the disease. These breaks occur most often in the hip, wrist, and spine. 2. Osteoporosis is silent. It’s often diagnosed only after a fracture. Menopause, family and medical history, physical build, and your lifestyle and diet can increase your odds of the disease.

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2. Heal better. Smoking weakens the body’s ability to heal from surgery, disease, broken bones, and even minor back strains. 3. Now hear this. Smokers are more likely to develop a hearing loss. Exposure to secondhand smoke also puts former smokers and nonsmokers at risk. 4. Stand tall. Smoking weakens bones and raises the risk of osteoporosis and hip fractures in men and women. 5. Keep your head. If your mind is cloudy, smoking may be the culprit. It’s been linked to memory problems and poor reasoning skills in middle-aged smokers.

You’re not just hurting yourself The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that secondhand smoke kills about 50,000 people every year and sickens many more. Children who live with a smoker are especially susceptible to lung and breathing problems, and they run an increased risk of hearing loss as adolescents. If you’re among the eight out of 10 smokers who want to quit, talk to your primary care doctor. To locate a doctor in your area, visit UPMC.com/FindADoctor or call toll-free 1-800-533-UPMC (8762).

Sources: American Academy of Ophthalmology, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Journal of the American Medical Association.

3. You can take proactive steps at any age to promote bone health. These include: eating foods rich in calcium, such as milk, cottage cheese, and calcium-enriched juices; exercising (weight-bearing exercise like walking); stopping smoking; and limiting alcohol use. If needed, consider taking a calcium supplement and vitamin D daily. 4. The good news is early detection is easy. If you’re 65 years of age or older, Dr. Greenspan recommends talking to your doctor about your risks. A simple bone mineral density test can assess your bone health. To learn more about osteoporosis, talk to your primary care provider, or visit the National Osteoporosis Foundation’s website at nof.org.


Shedding More Than Pounds Bariatric surgery helps free patients from a range of life-threatening health problems.

It’s well known that bariatric surgery can produce impressive weight loss. But there’s increasing evidence that it offers other health benefits, too. For example, a recent Swedish study showed weight-loss surgery can prevent diabetes among individuals who struggle with obesity. That news came as no surprise to Anita Courcoulas, MD, professor of surgery and chief of the Section of Minimally Invasive Bariatric and General Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. “It’s another study demonstrating the lasting impact of bariatric surgery on health improvement,” says Dr. Courcoulas. “The changes are real and durable.”

Is bariatric surgery right for you? Current national guidelines recommend bariatric surgery for patients who are 80 to 100 pounds overweight and with a body mass index (BMI) greater than 40, or a BMI of 35 or more for those with one or more significant obesity-related health conditions. Those guidelines may change, though. For example, at UPMC — one of the most highly funded centers of bariatric research in the country — Dr. Courcoulas is heading a study examining the impact of bariatric surgery on diabetic patients with lower BMIs (30–35). She predicts more and more patients will seek out bariatric surgery for health reasons — not just weight reasons. “We’re just beginning to understand its full potential,” she says.

Bariatric Surgery Centers at UPMC Each of UPMC’s four bariatric surgery centers has been named a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. Our multidisciplinary approach to weight loss through both surgery and lifestyle changes is available at: UPMC Hamot: Offers gastric bypass surgery, laparoscopic adjustable gastric band surgery, and gastric sleeve. For more information or to schedule an appointment with Amjad Ali, MD, or Rodolfo Arreola, MD, call 814-877-6997. UPMC Horizon: Offers gastric bypass surgery, laparoscopic adjustable gastric band surgery, gastric sleeve, and revisional surgery. For more information or to schedule an appointment with Christopher Myers, MD, call 724-588-6660.

A life-altering surgery According to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, an estimated 72 million Americans are considered obese and nearly 200,000 undergo bariatric surgery annually. UPMC is a leader nationally in bariatric surgery and in the number of bariatric procedures performed annually. Dr. Courcoulas says bariatric surgery (including gastric bypass, gastric band, and gastric sleeve) can help reverse a variety of serious obesity-related health conditions, such as: • Diabetes • Heart disease

• High blood pressure • High cholesterol

• Sleep apnea

UPMC St. Margaret: Pittsburgh Bariatrics offers gastric bypass, laparoscopic adjustable gastric band surgery, gastric sleeve, and revisional surgery. For more information or to schedule an appointment with Joseph Colella, MD, or LeeAnn Peluso, MD, call 412-784-5900. Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC: Offers gastric bypass surgery, laparoscopic adjustable gastric band surgery, gastric sleeve, revisional surgery, and clinical trials. For more information or to schedule an appointment with Anita Courcoulas, MD, director, Minimally Invasive Bariatric Surgery; George Eid, MD; Giselle Hamad, MD; Carol McCloskey, MD; or Ramesh Ramanathan, MD, call 412-641-3632. Each center offers free monthly information sessions. To learn more about bariatric surgery, or to find out if you’re a candidate, visit UPMC.com/bariatricsurgery.

1-800-533-UPMC

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Growing Up With Heart Disease Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC is responding to the special challenges facing adults born with congenital heart disease.

The ACHD Center — a joint program of Children’s Hospital and UPMC Presbyterian — provides specialized transition support and care for patients with congenital heart disease. “Despite surgery, patients can experience complications as adults, including arrhythmias, stroke, heart failure, and sudden cardiac death. Our care and follow-up enables these young people — now in their prime — to lead long, productive lives,” Dr. Cook says.

A healthy outlook Before her diagnosis, Alexis thought she was in great shape; she had lost 100 pounds, was running daily, and had completed a two-mile race. But her conditioning actually helped disguise her declining health. After undergoing surgery at Children’s last April to restore blood flow, she now realizes how much better she feels. This summer, she ran the race again.

Alexis Laney was only 14 months old when she underwent open heart surgery in Cleveland to repair a faulty valve. She had annual checkups until age 17, when her pediatric cardiologist referred her to an adult cardiologist. She scheduled sporadic checkups, but stopped going after giving birth to a son in 2005. “I felt fine,” says Alexis. Now 27, the young wife and mother finally gave in to her family’s urging last year and saw a cardiologist near her home in Youngstown, Ohio. Although her EKG and echocardiogram were normal, he urged Alexis to see a specialist at the Adult Congenital Heart Disease (ACHD) Center at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, saying, “I don’t know what to look for, but they will.” Tests conducted by Stephen Cook, MD, director of the ACHD Center, found scar tissue blocking blood flow to her aorta — a serious condition putting her at risk of sudden death. “I was shocked. I could have collapsed and died,” Alexis says.

Lifelong expert care Alexis is part of a growing population of adults born with heart defects who had lifesaving heart surgery as newborns and children. Thanks to advances in medicine and improved surgical techniques, “the number of adults with congenital heart diseases has outgrown the number of pediatric congenital heart disease patients,” says Dr. Cook.

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“Last year, I was better conditioned, but I couldn’t breathe after the race. This year, I felt fantastic,” Alexis says. “I’m glad I went to Children’s. I’m more confident about exercising now. I know my heart can take it.”

ACHD Center Fast Facts A single childhood surgery is seldom a permanent cure for patients born with a heart defect. The Adult Congenital Heart Disease Center provides lifelong care and follow-up for patients with congenital heart disease who are: • Ages 18 and up with conditions ranging from simple to severe • Women of childbearing age needing pregnancy counseling or contraception • Adolescents (13 to 17) who receive guidance, support, and care during their transition to adulthood For more information, contact the Adult Congenital Heart Disease Center at 412-692-5540 or email ACHD@chp.edu.


We’re Here for You

You’ll find the best of UPMC at strategic locations throughout the eastern suburbs, giving you and your physician even more resources for care.

Location, location, location. It influences almost every decision we make — from where we live to where we shop. Location is especially important when it comes to making health care decisions. You need quality services that are convenient and accessible — without the hassles of driving the Parkway East or dealing with construction woes. “With higher gas prices, increased traffic, and less free time, people place a high priority on good medical care that’s closer to where they live and work,” says Laura Gailey Moul, vice president, operations at UPMC East. “That’s why UPMC continues to expand its level of high-quality health care services to the Monroeville community.” UPMC’s outpatient facilities in the eastern suburbs serve people of all ages, offering: • Cardiovascular care • Chemotherapy • Imaging and diagnostic procedures • Pediatrics (Children’s East, which includes imaging and diagnostic services, medical services, and outpatient specialty services, and Children’s Express Care) • Physician specialties including ear, nose, and throat; gastroenterology; general surgery; heart and vascular; neurosurgery; orthopaedics; pulmonary; urology, and many more • Rehabilitation and physical therapy • Same-day surgery • Senior care • Sleep medicine • Women’s health (UPMC Womancare Center, which offers a range of imaging services, as well as general ob/gyn and women’s specialty physician services)

A medical complex serving patients and physicians A new physician office building opened recently at 400 Oxford Drive, which is adjacent to 600 Oxford Drive. Open for many years, 600 Oxford Drive houses imaging, UPMC Center for Rehab Services, and several physician offices. The result is UPMC at Oxford Drive, a medical complex with ample free parking and easy access to labs, x-rays, and other testing facilities, as well as primary care and specialty physician offices. “UPMC at Oxford Drive is a one-stop option,” says Ms. Moul. “Patients can see their primary care doctor, get necessary lab work and other testing done, or visit a specialist, all in the same location.” For Shawn Naseem, MD, an internal medicine physician with Primary Care Associates of Monroeville–UPMC, and his colleagues, the decision to move to UPMC at Oxford Drive was an easy one. Located on the top floor of the new building, their office space — newly built specifically for a primary care practice — is both functional and comfortable. “It is a warm and open environment that our patients and staff love.”

“Having so many other skilled medical specialists in such close proximity is a great advantage,” he adds. “We work very well together and communicate with one another. I know they are the very best at what they do, and I trust them to take care of my patients.” “Patients and physicians alike benefit from having such a comprehensive array of services and specialists available,” says Ms. Moul. “And UPMC East is a natural extension of our commitment to this area, offering convenient access to specialty care and inpatient services for primary care physicians and their patients.”

Do you have a PCP? Whether you have a minor concern or a more serious medical issue, your primary care physician (PCP) is the first line of defense in getting well and staying well. If you don’t already have a PCP, it’s best to find the right one before you get sick. “A PCP is equipped to deal with all kinds of health problems, whether simple or complex,” says Dr. Naseem. If you need advanced care, your PCP is the most effective and efficient link to specialists or other services and treatments. “For patients and their families, having a PCP to coordinate their care with specialists and other providers is a huge relief,” adds Dr. Naseem. “We are your advocate and guide in the broader health care system.” To locate physicians in the eastern suburbs, visit UPMC.com/FindADoctor, or call 1-800-533-UPMC (8762).

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UPMC East

2775 Mosside Blvd. Monroeville, PA 15146

UPMC Today is published quarterly to provide you with health and wellness information and classes and events available at UPMC. This publication is for information purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice or replace a physician’s medical assessment. Always consult first with your physician about anything related to your personal health.

Follow UPMC East on Facebook.

take time to take care of you Holidays are for celebrating all of the things that make life special. Don’t let a major illness, injury, or even a sore throat keep you from enjoying them. UPMC East physicians’ offices are open and conveniently located near you. Our physicians are accepting new patients, and in most cases even offer same-day appointments. Just call 1-800-533-UPMC (8762) or visit UPMC.com/Patient Care and we’ll get you an appointment with one of our doctors. It doesn’t matter why you need us; it matters that we’re here if you do.

Affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, UPMC is ranked among the nation’s top 10 hospitals by U.S. News & World Report.

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Murrysville 10/15/12 10:13 AM


A LETTER from the MAYOR m u n i c i p a l i t y

Murrysville takes great pride in its service clubs and non-profits primarily for Seniors. Visit a meeting and see if sharing your time with them matches your Mission desires. k Murrysville Kiwanis – Meets each Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. at Dick’s Diner on Route 22, Murrysville. Flag days have real meaning in Murrysville. “Flags Over Murrysville” instills pride, remembrance, and beauty, which we all enjoy. There are 340 American Flags placed along 2.5 miles of Route 22 on ten (10) holidays each year by Kiwanis members. Volunteers are needed and the commitment would only be once a year. The Kiwanis participates in Murrysville’s annual Night of Lights and ringing the bells for the Salvation Army. In cooperation with Franklin Regional Elementary, they run a BUG (Bring Up Grades) program that rewards students for improving grades. “My Friend, the Police Officer,” is one of my favorites, as it encourages all fifth grade classes in Franklin Regional to create posters demonstrating their close relationships with our local police. Kiwanis also cleans portions of Route 22 three times a year in the State Adopt-a-Highway program and offers the “Tools of the Trade” and “Key Club” scholarships. Contact: Bob McKenna at 412.334.4496. k Murrysville Lions Club – Meets the second and fourth Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Lamplighter Restaurant in Delmont. They are well known for their support of eye care research and the Leader Dog School in Rochester, MI (Seeing Eye Guide Dog training) and they enable local residents access to vision screening and eye care help. Lions have local drop-off points for the recycling of eyeglasses and help with products and funding for those with sight problems. Lions provide for vision screenings at our area pre-schools and day care centers. Often, their Care-a-Van can be seen at regional community events for vision and hearing screenings for adults. The Lions also co-sponsor the Teen-Age Golf League at Meadowink Golf Course, which is open to all youths, 13 to 18 years of age, each summer. Contact: Membership Chairperson Ella Mae McDougall at 724.325.9954 or ellamaemcdougall@yahoo.com. k Murrysville-Export Rotary – Meets each Wednesday at 6:45 p.m. at the Lamplighter Restaurant in Delmont.

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m u r r y s v i l l e

Service projects include: Fresh Express with the County Food Bank, cleaning Olive Cemetery in the spring, clearing a trail at King Nature Reserve, giving dictionaries to the third grade, raising money and working at the Miracle Field in Murrysville, selling sausage at Community Day, and having a Christmas party for the residents of Clelian Heights. The Rotary sponsors the oldest continually-running Halloween parade each year and the annual Chili Festival. Contact: http://www.murrysvilleexportrotary.org.  k Forbes Trail Faith in Action – A United Way of Westmoreland County program that provides free non-medical assistance to Seniors who are 60 years of age or older. The program provides volunteer companionship and assistance to help seniors remain living in their homes and communities, independent and healthy. The services provided are as follows: Supportive visits, telephone reassurance calls, light handy man and yard work services, running errands, helping with correspondence, caregiver relief, transportation and home safety checks. Contact: Phyllis L. Morgan, Program Director, at 4600 Old William Penn Highway, Murrysville, PA 15668, 724.327.3353 or phyllis@unitedway4u.org. k Meals on Wheels – Provides a complete nutritious hot lunch plus a cold supper to people who find it difficult to prepare meals for themselves because of poor health, disabilities, or lack of kitchen skill. The idea is to help individuals to remain in their own home and be independent for as long as possible. According to a recent government survey, 40% of the elderly in nursing facilities today would not need to be there if this service had been available to them. Contact: Murrysville Meals-On-Wheels, 3202 North Hills Road, Murrysville, PA 15668, 724.327.6842. k Murrysville Senior Center – 3091 Carson Avenue, Murrysville –To further educational, informational, social and recreational opportunities for the senior citizens of Murrysville and surrounding communities. Board meetings are held on the second Monday of the month at 10:00 a.m.; regular meetings generally on the last Friday of the month; quarterly membership meetings held in January, April, July, and October. For details, please contact Florence L. Hoy at 724.216.7186 or flhoy@hoyconcrete.com. Best regards, Robert J. Brooks Mayor, Municipality of Murrysville

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ranklin Regional held their Homecoming, which kicked off with the annual F bonfire on October 11 at the school complex. A variety of ethnic foods were served and several organizations were represented at 30 plus booths.

Homecoming culminated with a dance held in the senior high school, with the theme “Save the World Tonight,� which was held on Saturday, October 13. Members of the homecoming court were Nicole Berardinelli, Hannah Bertolo, Mary Criado, Megan Gillespie, Maggie Kimmich, Kaitlyn Ruffing, Hanna Wagner, Jordan Woyt, Dane Brown, Michael Good, Carter Henderson, Nicholas Letzkus, Harvish Mehta, Jonny Palmer, Fred Pena, and Luke Stephens.

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veryone who paid the price of admission was granted judging rights to select the best chili. There were 10 different hot chili recipes and 10 mild chili recipes for those with a sensitive palate. First and second prizes were awarded for both the hot and mild categories, as well as the best restaurant chili. But truthfully, all the chili was delicious!! Guests to the cook-off were able to combine their love of great chili with football by watching the sport on big screens provided by The Geek Squad from Best Buy. All the proceeds from the event went to the Rotary Polio Foundation, the Miracle Complex at Murrysville Community Park and the Murrysville Fire Departments.

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arents can enjoy some Friday nights without kids for holiday P shopping, dinner, and a movie, and kids can enjoy fun times at the Murrysville Recreation Department’s Winter Playground

Program at the Murrysville Community Center! Winter Playground Program sessions will be offered on November 23 (Black Friday) from 12:00-6 p.m. and December 7, 14, and 21 from 6:00-10:00 p.m. The playground program and summer camp staff and volunteers will keep kids, ages five to 12, busy with board games, crafts, movies and more for only $5.00 each visit and a one-time $5.00 registration fee! Parents are encouraged to send their children with a snack and maybe a pillow and blanket for watching movies. The Murrysville Community Center is located at 3091 Carson Ave. Volunteers age 13 and older are also needed to help with the program. Please call the Recreation Department at 724.327.2100 ext. 115 or 131 for more information or to volunteer.

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Murrysville

Photo Contest

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The 2012 Murrysville Photo Contest is now open for entries. Murrysville’s Parks and Recreation Commission invites any amateur photographer to email up to three (3) photographs taken anywhere outdoors in Murrysville. Entries can be from any year, so long as they were not entered in a previous year’s edition of the contest. The 2012 contest categories are: Wildlife; People or Pets; Scenery and Plant Life; Man-made Objects; and Photos by Young Photographers 15 & under. Entries will be judged for creativity, photographic quality and composition, and how well the entry conveys the beauty or unique character of Murrysville. Bonus points will be awarded for photos taken in any park or reserve in Murrysville. The entry deadline is midnight, December 31, 2012. Complete information about how to enter along with contest rules, frequently asked questions, and results and photos from previous contests may be found at murrysvillephotocontest.org.

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Open f or Entrie s!


BeforeWinter Storm

Industry Insight

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efore the winter storm strikes, it’s important to know the weather terminology that may appear across the bottom of your television screen or on the local radio station. Winter Storm Watch: Severe winter weather may affect the surrounding area within the next 36 to 48 hours. Winter Storm Warning: Severe winter weather conditions are on the way or will begin within 24 hours. Take cover and be prepared. Blizzard Warning: Blinding snow and dangerous wind chills are expected for several hours. Sustained winds of 35 mph are expected to sweep the area. A traveler’s advisory is issued If driving conditions are expected to be dangerous or slow moving. Here are some other tips to help you prepare for winter storms: Winterize your car long before the first snowfall hits. Winter weather is unpredictable and may surprise you early in the season. Prepare a disaster kit for your vehicle that includes: n Shovel n Sand n Tow chain n Jumper cables n Screwdrivers, pliers and a knife n Ice scraper and snow brush n Spare change n Blankets/sleeping bags

n Small can and waterproof matches for melting snow n Windshield washer antifreeze n High calorie, non-perishable food items n Warm clothes that can be layered n Compass and map n Cell phone and charger

4 Winterize your trees and bushes by trimming long branches. The ice and wet snow that accumulates on branches can cause damage to your home, car or neighbors. 4 Salt and shovel walkways often. 4 Drain your pipes if you go on vacation or experience a power outage to prevent your pipes from freezing and bursting. 4 Make certain that each family member has warm winter gear, Including a winter coat, gloves, hat or scarf and water-resistant boots. 4 Keep your gas tank full In the winter months to protect your fuel line from freezing. 4 Have your cell phone charged. 4 Stock an ample supply of logs that can be reached easily during a storm if you have a wood burning fireplace. Contact Us If you haven’t scheduled an annual insurance review, contact our agency today. We will review your risks and help you make important decisions about your auto, home, life or business insurance coverage. Not all companies are licensed or operate in all states. Not all products are offered in all states. Go to erieinsurance.com for company licensure and territory information.

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Murrysville Couples Share

How They Met

Shirley and Bob Mansfield We Met at a Funeral Home!

When Charles (Bob) Mansfield’s aunt passed away in 1953, he went to her viewing in Etna at the Ogrodnick Funeral Home. Little did he know that his future wife, Shirley, was also attending the funeral with a girlfriend from work who was related to his aunt. After politely paying their respects, the three went across the street to Isaly’s to eat and socialize. Shirley and Bob were not to see each other again until Memorial Day, about three months later. Bob’s relatives were holding a picnic and Shirley turned up with her girlfriend from work. This time, the two started dating and were married on September 17, 1954, a little over a year after they had first met. The couple celebrated their 58th wedding anniversary

this year. They have three children, Tom, Lynn and Sherrie, and three granddaughters, Jeanine, Laura and Alyssa. To this day, Bob always signs his cards to Shirley, “ISALYS” (I Shall Always Love You Shirley). So you never know...your special someone may be waiting for you at the funeral home. (Provided it’s not the deceased).

Hank and Mary Beth Wonders

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hirty-two wonderful years ago I came home from college on Thanksgiving break. I was bored sitting at home so I called a girlfriend, and my cousin, David, to see if they wanted to go out for the evening. We went to a local lounge called the Hickory Tree in Sarver. There was a DJ playing that night and a big crowd. When we arrived it was standing room only. We were weaving through the crowd when I spotted three young men sitting at a table for six. I asked one of them if the other three seats were taken. He replied, “No,” so we sat there for the entire night. Well, actually I didn’t sit much. I danced most of the time with my cousin. Then when we sat down I asked Hank, the young man sitting across from me, if he wanted to dance (I felt that was the courteous thing to do since they were sharing their table with us). As he sprang midway across the table, he said, “Yes!” We danced several times and then sat down. Once again I started dancing with David. This rotation continued on until the end of the night was near. I had danced several slow dances with Hank and each time he sang in my ear. I thought this was quite nice...however, I was told by one of his friends that he thought it was really weird

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that I danced with both him and my “boyfriend” and that he was getting out of there. Realizing that Hank had mistaken my cousin Dave for a boyfriend, I cleared up the misunderstanding. Hank decided to stay. The very next day was Thanksgiving. After my family finished eating dinner, an unfamiliar car pulled into our driveway. When I saw who it was, I started running around in a frenzy. Once I got myself under control, I calmly walked into the kitchen to greet him. By the end of the night, my family was very fond of him and so was I. He later told me that the reason he showed up unexpectedly was to see what I was really like. I must have “passed” because we were married May 30, 1981, and have enjoyed 31 years together.

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By Matt Fascetti

Many people think of health and wellness as just diet and exercise. While those are two key components, there are many more factors that affect an individual’s overall vitality. Other areas of focus include dental and vision; specialties such as podiatry and audiology; preventative measures such as chiropractic visits and acupuncture/massage. Even feel-good procedures such as hair replacement and cosmetic surgery can boost a person’s demeanor and self-confidence.

and the region you live in, the average gym membership can vary from $10 a month to $100 a month. While gyms, fitness programs and personal trainers can be an excellent way to achieve cardiovascular health, just remember they are not the only way. If money is tight there are plenty of free alternatives that may work just as well for you.

With all of these areas of wellness to consider, it can be a daunting task to pay for the treatments and procedures that enhance the quality of our lives. So how do we decide what to spend our healthcare dollars on? • Acupuncture and Massage • Which procedures are the most effective and beneficial? The following is a review of what to consider when choosing a healthier lifestyle. If you’ve ever been treated to a massage, you probably don’t need a list of of advantages to persuade you to have one on a regular basis. • Fitness • Massage is the manipulating of superficial and deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue using various techniques, to enhance Exercise is the one thing most doctors stress when the subject of function, aid in the healing process, and promote relaxation and wellhealth and wellness is broached. Certainly there are other factors such being. as genetics, eating, smoking, drinking and medication that can play a significant role, but exercise is at the core of health and wellness. So what is the best way to stay fit? There is no perfect answer as it is different for each individual’s needs and desires. There are many ways an individual can exercise on their own such as walking, running, biking, hiking, at-home workout DVDs or weight training, just to name a few. Many Americans join gyms to help them stay fit. There are advantages to having a gym membership which include a wide array of equipment, fellow members to help motivate you, professional trainers and a monthly monetary obligation that can help you stay committed to your fitness goals. Unfortunately, gym memberships are not covered by health insurance, so it is up to the individual to not only foot the bill but to select one that best suits our needs. Most gyms have monthly payments, but some also have yearly or bi-yearly options as well. Depending on the facility 38

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Massage involves working and acting on the body with pressure – structured, unstructured, stationary, or moving – tension, motion, or vibration, done manually or with mechanical aids. Target tissues may include muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia, skin, joints or other connective tissue, as well as lymphatic vessels, or organs of the gastrointestinal system. Massage can be applied with the hands, fingers, elbows, knees, forearms, and feet. There are over 80 different recognized massage modalities.The most cited reasons for introducing massage as therapy have been client demand and perceived clinical effectiveness. Massage is usually only covered by insurance in very special circumstances, so be prepared to pay out of pocket for these services. According to www.mayoclinic.com, acupuncture involves the insertion of extremely thin needles through your skin at strategic points on your body. A key component of Traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture is most commonly used to treat pain. Traditional Chinese medicine explains acupuncture as a technique


for balancing the flow of energy or life force known as qi or chi, ( pronounced CHEE), believed to flow through pathways (meridians) in your body. By inserting needles into specific points along these meridians, acupuncture practitioners believe that your energy flow will re-balance. In contrast, many Western practitioners view the acupuncture points as places to stimulate nerves, muscles and connective tissue. This stimulation appears to boost the activity of your body’s natural painkillers and increase blood flow. Reasons for having an acupuncture procedure include Chemotherapyinduced nausea and vomiting, Fibromyalgia, headaches, labor pain, low back pain, menstrual cramps, migraines, Osteoarthritis, dental pain and tennis elbow. As with massage, acupuncture is generally not covered by insurance.

• Chiropractic Care • According to www.chiropractor.com, chiropractic care is a natural method of health care that focuses on correcting the causes of physical problems from subluxations or misalignments of the bones in the body, especially the spine. The field of Chiropractic is considered holistic, improving people’s lives by optimizing the functioning of the nervous system. Every cell in the body is controlled by the nervous system, including taste, touch, smell, hormones, digestion and cardiovascular. Chiropractic does not just treat symptoms or problems, but allows for a healthy nervous system, so the body functions better. A healthy nervous system has the ability to resist disease and ill health. Chiropractic restores the body’s nervous system, thereby increasing its resistance to illnesses. Chiropractors are able to determine and remove blocks to the nervous system by locating subluxations or misaligned vertebrae and adjusting them. There is one issue that will arise with chiropractic care… visits are sometimes not covered by insurance. Although suggested by many health care practitioners, including primary care physicians, some insurance companies still consider chiropractors luxury visits in some instances. One session with a chiropractor can cost anywhere from $35-$100 depending on the region you live in, with additional fees for more completed procedures. When it comes to chiropractic care, one must decide if the benefits outweigh the cost.

• Dental Work • Dental care is a vital aspect of health and wellness. Many people incorrectly believe that dental care is important for aesthetic reasons only, but this is far from the case. According to the American Academy of Periodontology, there is a link between poor oral health and conditions such as endocarditis, cardiovascular disease, although researchers are not sure of the role that oral health plays in causing heart problems. Recent studies have also shown that women with periodontal disease

Our Health & Wellness

partners

Orthopedic Associates of Pittsburgh 412.373.1600 www.oapgh.com Orthopedic Associates of Pittsburgh was established more than four decades ago. Originally in Oakland, Monroeville opened in 1978 and White Oak in 2002. We have evolved from a general orthopedic practice into a sub-specialty practice encompassing hand & upper extremity, foot & ankle, total joint replacement, sports medicine and spine. We will strive to provide the finest service and care for your orthopedic needs.

Murrysville Healing Arts 724.327.0025 www.murrysvillehealingarts.com Murrysville Healing Arts, A Place Dedicated to Health and Healing Practices. A serene atmosphere and quality therapists at Murrysville Center for Massage Therapy offer 14 years of therapeutic massage experience in pain reduction, relaxation and stress relief. Yoga, Tai Chi and health-related workshops help build flexibility and strength. Chiropractic and Acupuncture add to the dynamics of complementary care. Come and tour MHA!

are at three to five times greater risk for delivering a preterm infant than those who are periodontally healthy. There may also be a link between oral health and diabetes, Alzheimer’s and certain immune disorders. Whether you have a cracked tooth, a cavity, braces, dental implants or are needing a simple whitening or cleaning, dental care is a priority for most people. Because the costs of dental care keep increasing, some are choosing to cut out dentist visits all together. This is not recommended. However, if carrying dental insurance is not an option, then an individual should still stick to routine check-ups. According to ehow.com, the national average cost for a regular cleaning can range anywhere from $50-130 depending on the region in which you live. Skipping these checkups and cleanings can lead to more serious issues down the road that can cost thousands of dollars. In the meantime, as is the case with most health-related issues, prevention is the key. Brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss after every meal and you drastically increase your odds of having great oral health.

• Vision Care • Many of us take our vision for granted. But we would certainly be completely lost without it, so it is essential we take good care of our Murrysville | Winter 2012 | incommunitymagazines.com 39


Health & Wellness eyes with regular exams and wearing glasses or contacts, if needed. According to the Vision Council of America, approximately 75% of adults need some sort of vision correction. Although drugstores sell non-prescription glasses for reading; which means anyone can buy them without seeing their eye doctor for an exam, there is no substitute for a professional vision exam by an eye doctor, with a customized prescription for glasses or corrective lenses. Approximately 30% of the American population is nearsighted and must use glasses for activities such as driving and schoolwork. About 60% of Americans are farsighted meaning that they have trouble reading or sewing without glasses, but can focus well at a distance. The majority of young people who wear glasses are nearsighted. As people age, they are more likely to need vision correction for farsightedness. About 25% of people who wear glasses to see distances will end up needing reading glasses or bifocals as they get older. The recommendations for the frequency of vision exams varies somewhat, but generally individuals are advised to have an eye exam, somewhere between one to four years, depending upon their age group.

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• Podiatry • Podiatry is the specialty devoted to the diagnosis and treatment of conditions affecting the foot. According to the American Podiatric Medical Association, most people log an amazing 75,000 miles on their feet by the time they reach age 50. Regular foot care can ensure that your feet are up to the task. With proper detection and intervention, most foot and ankle problems can be lessened or prevented. Many people are unaware of the many issues that can affect feet. Arthritis, Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD), peripheral neuropathy, common injuries (sprains, strains and fractures), Haglund’s Deformity (bony enlargement of the back of the heel bone), heel pain and tendinitis can all create mobility problems for individuals. There are various skin disorders including athlete’s foot, corns and calluses, psoriasis, skin cancer of the feet, as well as toe joint and nerve disorders such as bunions, hammer toes and neuromas to consider.


Individuals may also suffer from ingrown toenails. Some basic but effective foot care tips include, washing your feet daily, making sure to rinse off all soap and water especially between the toes and trimming nails straight across and not overly short to avoid cutting or digging at corners. Over the counter medications are not recommended for removing corns or calluses. A qualified podiatrist should be consulted for treatment and removal. Wear clean socks or stockings changed daily and make sure that they are not too tight. Always wear properly fitting shoes. If you do suffer a foot ailment, there are various ways to treat them. Prescription, custom orthotics, which are specially-made devices, are designed to support and comfort your feet and may correct the problem. For more severe issues, surgery may be needed in cases when pain or deformity persists.

• Audiology • Audiology is the evaluation, diagnosis, treatment and management of hearing loss and balance disorders in adults and children. It is an important component to health and wellness, yet it tends to be ignored unless there is a noticeable problem. Individuals should get their hearing checked yearly to ensure that everything is as it should be. An audiologist, commonly called an ear doctor, prescribes and fits hearing aids, assists in cochlear implant programs, performs ear or hearing related surgical monitoring, designs hearing conservation programs and provides newborn screening programs to test hearing levels. Audiologists may also provide hearing rehabilitation such as auditory training, speech reading and listening skills improvement. What many people don’t realize is that almost all types of hearing loss are treatable by an audiologist. No one should ever feel there is no hope with hearing loss. Some hearing related problems include occupational; earwax blockage; hearing loss related to aging; acoustic neuroma, a noncancerous tumor on the hearing nerve; Meniere’s Disease, a serious tumor on the nerve ending; ringing in the ears; and fluid on the ear. Most hearing-related procedures and tests will be covered by most insurance companies.

• Family Medicine • According to the American Academy of Family Medicine (AAFP), family practice is health care for the individual and family that integrates the biological, clinical and behavioral sciences. The scope of

family medicine encompasses all ages, both sexes and every organ system of the body. Common services provided in family medicine include bone density screenings, EKGs, hospital care, immunizations and flu shots, lab services, minor surgery (warts, lesions, stitches), newborn health, gynecology and obstetrics, school and sports physicals and preventative visits. Family Medicine physicians work closely with patients to prevent disease and offer them a long and healthy life. Healthy lifestyle, exercise and weight control are often points that are stressed to all members of the family. For those with a personal history of chronic disease, specific measures are taken to ensure that they are being monitored and that their disease is being managed effectively. This is usually achieved with regular health maintenance exams and by keeping up with what is going on in their lives. The main focus and advantage of family medicine is the very personal and intimate care that is normally received. The attending physician almost becomes a member of the family. Another particular benefit of family medicine is that it concentrates on education as well. Everyone in the family should understand what good healthy living is and all the ins and outs of how to achieve health goals. This is done with open discussions with your physician.

• Pediatrics • Arguably, pediatric medicine is one of the most important areas of medical practice because it deals with our children. This branch of medicine deals with the care of infants, children and adolescents. The ages treated usually range from birth to 18 years. According to www.news-medical.net, pediatrics differs from adult medicine in many aspects. The obvious body size differences are paralleled by maturational changes. The smaller body of an infant or neonate is substantially different physiologically from that of an adult. Congenital defects, genetic variance and developmental issues are areas of greater concern for pediatricians.

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Health & Wellness Treating a child is not like treating a miniature adult. A major difference between pediatrics and adult medicine is that children are minors and in most jurisdictions, cannot make decisions for themselves. The issues of guardianship, privacy, legal responsibility and informed consent must always be considered in every pediatric procedure. In a sense, pediatricians often have to treat the parents and sometimes, the family, rather than just the child. Adolescents are in their own legal class, having rights to their own health care decisions in certain circumstances. Pediatrics is a fairly new practice, only becoming a specialty in the mid-19th century. Today it is one of the biggest medical specialties in the United States, mainly because individuals tend to care more for their children than they do themselves and are therefore more likely to seek regular and consistent medical care for their children.

• Geriatrics • Geriatric medicine is quite unique because it usually deals with health issues related to age such as arthritis, heart disease, diabetes and more. Despite these challenges, geriatric wellness is better than it has ever been before. People are living longer and taking better care of themselves.

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Retirement goals for the senior citizen of today differ widely from the objectives of retirees in years past. Today’s senior has a desire to not only stay healthy and prevent disease, they are passionate about living an active lifestyle. Exercise has been shown to increase longevity and quality of life. According to livestrong.com, the five categories of fitness include aerobic fitness, muscular strength, muscular endurance, body composition and flexibility. For the geriatric exercise participant, balance also plays a huge role in the development of their wellness program. For example, working on strength and balance to prevent falls is important, but in reality, a trip, slip or fall will eventually happen. Exercises that build bone density and joint integrity along with flexibility are important to prevent fractures and other injuries. The American College of Sports Medicine exercise guidelines for men and women 65 and older includes cardiovascular exercise at a moderate pace for 30 minutes, five days a week to improve aerobic fitness. It is also recommended that older adults engage in strength


training two days per week. The focus should be on large muscle group exercises that mimic activities of daily living, such as standing, reaching overhead and pulling. It is also suggested that flexibility exercises be added at least two days per week. One should also utilize balance exercises to create a well-rounded program that focuses on both performance and prevention. The bottom line is, today’s world offers better opportunities than ever before for seniors to live and be healthy for many years to come.

• Hair Restoration • It is no secret, we live in a society where looks are important to many people. So naturally, hair replacement has become more and more popular. According to www.plasticsurgery. org, hair loss is primarily caused by a combination of aging, a change in hormones, and a family history of baldness. As a rule, the earlier hair loss begins, the more severe the baldness will become. Hair loss can also be caused by burns or trauma, in which case hair replacement surgery is considered a reconstructive treatment, and may be covered by health insurance. Baldness is often blamed on poor circulation to the scalp, vitamin deficiencies, dandruff, and even excessive hat-wearing. All of these theories have been disproved. It’s also untrue that hair loss can be determined by looking at your maternal grandfather, or that 40-yearold men who haven’t lost their hair will never lose it. Hair replacement surgery can enhance your appearance and your selfconfidence, but the results are not always what you envisioned. Before you decide to have surgery, think carefully about your expectations and discuss them with your surgeon. It’s important to understand that all hair replacement techniques use your existing hair. The goal of surgery is to find the most efficient uses for existing hair. Hair replacement candidates must have healthy hair growth at the back and sides of the head to serve as donor areas. Donor areas are the places on the head from which grafts and flaps are taken. Other factors, such as hair color, texture and waviness or curliness may also affect the result. Transplant techniques, such as punch grafts, mini-grafts, micro-grafts, slit grafts and strip grafts are generally performed on patients who desire a more modest change in hair fullness. Flaps, tissue-expansion and scalp-reduction are procedures that are usually more appropriate for patients who desire a more dramatic change. Remember, there are limits to what can be accomplished. An individual with very little hair might not be advised to undergo hair replacement surgery. Murrysville | Winter 2012 | incommunitymagazines.com 43


business spotlight

serving you and your community

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utting hair isn’t just a business for Supercuts stylists, it’s also a way to give back to the customers they love and the community they call home. Guests know that they can always count on superb service and a welcome smile when they visit the two Murrysville area Supercuts. Our expertly trained stylists offer a multitude of services including haircuts, waxing, blow-outs, color and more. As the owner of the Supercuts franchise in Southwestern Pennsylvania, Laurel Slaughter-Odelein has not only added over 350 jobs to the region through her stores, but she and her employees have also been supporting local schools, sports teams, civil services and charities in those communities for more than 20 years. “We support the communities we serve,” Slaughter-Odelein said. “Giving back is important to us because the communities have given us so much.” Supercuts also invests in its employees through extensive training programs and prides itself on hiring aspiring stylists graduating from local trade schools. “Pittsburgh is filled with talented people and we are thrilled to be able to hire vibrant employees, many of whom have recently graduated and are entering the work force for the first time,” Slaughter-Odelein said. Supercuts hires only licensed stylists and mandates extensive education with two weeks of in-store training before stylists are sent to Supercuts’ own Hair Stylist Academy. Stylists attend an advanced training course conducted by the Supercuts Certified Trainer/Artistic

Murrysville Stylists Ashley, Kristin, Melissa, Jessica and Katie look forward to seeing you.

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Director. New stylists must pass the five-day, 40-hour course before they are able to actively work on the floor of the salon. After mastering this level, stylists will continue to undergo regular training to enable them to keep up with the latest styles and trends. “We take what they’ve learned at school, provide additional and ongoing education, and look to retain these employees for many years,” Slaughter-Odelein said. This strategy is apparently working because Supercuts was just rated one of the top places to work in 2012 by a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette survey. “It’s an honor to be recognized as a great place to work,” SlaughterOdelein said. “Our employees are happy and that attitude is passed on to our guests. We not only offer a superior salon experience at an affordable price, but our locations are full of people who love and take pride in what they do and the community they serve.” If you haven’t already experienced the full services Supercuts offers, please visit us soon. Supercuts has 30 Pittsburgh area locations. There are two central to Murrysville, one located at 4891 William Penn Highway, which is open 7 days a week, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays; and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays. The second location is at 6750 Hollywood Boulevard in Delmont, and is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information on all of Supercuts locations and services visit www. supercuts.com , or to call ahead for faster service, call 724.733.1791 or 724.468.8454. Walk-ins are always welcome!

Delmont Stylists Jesse, Tammy, Julie, Lynda and Sage are ready to help you with your new look today.


Gingerbread 6 cups all-purpose flour 1 3/4 cups sugar 2/3 cups shortening 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon 1 tablespoon ground ginger 2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder 1 1/4 teaspoons salt 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 eight-ounce container sour cream 2 eggs Prepare dough in a large bowl. Measure 3 1/2 cups flour and remaining ingredients. With mixer at low speed, beat until well mixed, scraping bowl. Knead in remaining 2 1/2 cups flour to make a soft dough. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or until dough is not sticky and is of easy kneading consistency. To roll dough: Keep refrigerated until ready for use. Working with half batch at a time on a lightly floured cookie sheet, knead dough until smooth. Then on a greased and floured 17” x 14” cookie sheet, with lightly floured rolling pin, roll dough to 1/8” thickness. Make pattern pieces of heavy cardboard, laying them on the dough and use a sharp knife to trace. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake until golden brown and very firm. Remove cookie sheet from oven and cool on wire rack for 5 minutes. Carefully remove the baked pieces from cookie sheet and place on wire rack to cool completely.

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Community Worship k

Calvary Lutheran Church 4725 Old William Penn Highway Murrysville, PA 15668 724.327.2898, www.calvarylcms.org Christ’s Lutheran Church 5330 Logan Ferry Road Murrysville, PA 15668 412.795.1212, clc-murrysville-pa.org/ Cornerstone Ministries 2200 Cornerstone Lane Export, PA 15632 724.733.0070, cornerstonelive.net Denmark Manor United Church of Christ 2003 Denmark Manor Road Export, PA 15632 724.744.4218, dmucc.com East Suburban Unitarian Universalist Church 4326 Sardis Road Murrysville, PA 15668 724.327.5872, www.esuuc.org Emmanuel Lutheran Church 5000 Old Wm. Penn Highway Export, PA 15632 724.327.2190, elcelca@windstream.net ourlutheranchurch.org/ Emmanuel Reformed United Church of Christ P. O Box 426, 3618 Hills Church Road Export, PA 15632 724.327.3050, hillschurch.wordpress.com First Presbyterian Church of Murrysville 3202 North Hills Road Murrysville, PA 15668 724.327.0728, murrysville.org First United Methodist Church of Murrysville 3916 Old William Penn Highway Murrysville, PA 15668 724.327.5049, murrysvilleumc.org Keystone Christian Church 5853 Washington Avenue Export, PA 15632 724.327.4473 keystonechristianchurch.net Mother of Sorrows 4202 Old William Penn Highway Murrysville, PA 15668 724.733.8870, mosparish.org Murrysville Alliance Church 4130 Old William Penn Highway Murrysville, PA 15668, 724.327.7206, murrysvillealliancechurch.org Murrysville Community Church A Congregation of the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) 3750 School Road, Murrysville, PA 15668 724.327.8411, murrysvillechurch.com Newlonsburg Presbyterian Church 4600 Old William Penn Highway Murrysville, PA 15668-2009 724.327.0061, newlonsburgchurch.org St. Alban’s Episcopal Church 4920 Cline Hollow Road Murrysville, PA 15668-0466 724.325.2727 www.stalbanchurch.net 46

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ccording to Minnie Elfkin, public relations coordinator for Santa Claus Operations North America, the iconic Christmas figure will be keeping a dizzying schedule of public appearances this holiday season. During November and December, Mr. Claus will be visiting as many cities and towns across the U.S. as possible, including appearances in the Murrysville area. Those wishing to consult Mr. Claus to make a particular gift request should check the shopping malls and local holiday parades. Mr. Claus also may be seen in the vicinity of 34th Street in New York City and any cold, mountainous region where reindeer may live. In other news from the North Pole, Prancer has been placed on the injured reserve list, although he is expected to be healthy for the Christmas Eve event. A young reindeer named Techno is being called up from the farm team as a possible replacement if Prancer is unable to fly by Christmas. Elfkin stresses, “Presents WILL BE delivered on time and there will be no lapse in service regardless of personnel changes.� Elfkin also reminds homeowners to leave the damper open to provide easier access through the chimney. This season Mr. Claus is watching

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his cholesterol intake and low-fat snacks are much appreciated. Elfkin also reports that the United Federation of Elves has been working on some exciting new toys this season that should please any toddler or preschooler. Children are alerted to be on their best behavior, now that Santa Claus has skype capabilities. Although there have been many imposters, there is still no official Santa Claus website at this time. Santa Claus cannot be liked on Facebook or followed on Twitter due to the covert nature of his operations in the North Pole region. Those children wishing to write Mr. Claus should send all correspondence to the usual address, Santa Claus, North Pole. All children in the Murrysville area are requested to go to bed no later than 10 p.m. on Christmas Eve. Santa Claus will be arriving in Delmont sometime between 2:17 and 2:18 a.m. Eastern Standard Time, stopping in Murrysville last at 2:20 a.m. In order to receive a present from Santa, children should be sure to pick up their toys and eat all of their vegetables. In the meantime, keep a sharp eye toward the northern sky and watch for flying reindeer and twinkling lights. To All a Merry Christmas and to All a Good Night. By Pamela Palongue


PRSRT STD US POSTAGE PAID PITTSBURGH, PA PERMIT NO. 887

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