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in good As weather warms, more tattoos come to light. Experts say to be cautious if you want one applied to your body


Rochester–Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper

June 2013 • Issue 94

A Great Life After a Transplant

Are Dads Healthier Than Non-Dads?

How to Use Herbal Supplements Safely

From the agony of waiting for a donor, to the relief of a fully functional new organ, transplant recipients, such as Geoff Foley of Perinton, share their stories Page119 Page

Surprising Wonders of Watermelon

More Than 4,000 U.S. Kids Hurt Each Year on Amusement Rides

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Tips to Help Reduce the Risk of a Lawn Mower Injury Among Kids


40% of Parents Give Young Kids Cough/ Cold Medicine That They Shouldn’t Meet Your Doctor Louis Eichel is RGH chief of urology. He talks about career, prostate cancer prevention and robotic surgery

Stop the Press! Juneberries Are Coming Locally grown fruit — new to New York state — hits the market in June-July for the first time

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June 2013 •

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper

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Underage Drinking – is not a minor problem

Finger Lakes Radiation Oncology Center is proud to support the Main Streets Go Blue campaign for colorectal cancer. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in this country, but it doesn’t have to be. Screening can find it early, when treatment is the most effective.

Prom and graduation are important events in the lives of young people.

So, don’t lie around. Get screened today.. • • • •

Comfortably close to home Board-certified radiation oncologists and radiation therapists Encouraging and supportive environment Take charge and make us your choice for treatments

Hosting parties for teens where alcohol is available can be costly for everyone involved. It is illegal, unsafe, and unhealthy for anyone under age 21 to drink alcohol. “Parents Who Host, Lose the Most: Don’t be a party to teenage drinking.”

For more information visit our website at who host or call (585) 719-3489 7 Ambulance Drive, Clifton Springs, NY 14432 (315) 462-5711 •

Visit our Facebook page


HELP REDUCE ER CROWDING. FOR COLD AND FLU SYMPTOMS, SEE YOUR DOCTOR. A recent study found that each year there are hundreds of thousands of emergency room visits in upstate New York that could be avoided. Minor conditions like cold and flu symptoms, congestion, back pain, earaches and sports injuries are best treated by your doctor. If your doctor isn’t available, consider visiting an urgent care facility. And do your part to relieve ER crowding.

Sponsored by the Monroe County Medical Society, Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency, and Excellus BlueCross BlueShield. A nonprofit independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association

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IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence – Rochester Area

Are Your Facing a Social Security Disability/SSI Claim?

Let Me Represent You. “That’s All I Do.” Twenty years experience.

f Mary Perry, ADR 585-424-2928

Researchers call for standardized safety regulations to reduce injuries

More Than 4,000 U.S. Kids Hurt Each Year on Amusement Rides


ore than 4,000 American children are injured on amusement rides each year, according to a new study that calls for standardized safety regulations. Between 1990 and 2010, nearly 93,000 children under the age of 18 were treated in U.S. emergency rooms for amusement-ride-related injuries, an average of nearly 4,500 injuries per year. More than 70 percent of the injuries occurred from May through September, which means that more than 20 injuries a day occurred during these warmweather months, said researchers at the Center for Injury Research and Policy at the Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. The head and neck region was the most frequently injured (28 percent), followed by the arms (24 percent), face (18 percent) and legs (17 percent). The most common types of injuries were soft tissue (29 percent), strains and sprains (21 percent), cuts (20 percent) and broken bones (10 percent). The percentage of injuries that required hospitalization or observation was low, suggesting that serious inju-

ries are rare. From May through September, however, an amusement-riderelated injury serious enough to require hospitalization occurs an average of once every three days, according to the study, which was published online May 1 and in the May print issue of the journal Clinical Pediatrics. Youngsters were most likely to suffer injuries as a result of a fall (32 percent) or by either hitting a part of their body on a ride or being hit by something while riding (18 percent). Thirtythree percent of injuries occurred on amusement park rides, 29 percent on mobile rides at fairs and festivals, and 12 percent on rides at malls, stores, restaurants and arcades. “Although the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has jurisdiction over mobile rides, regulation of fixed-site rides is currently left to state or local governments, leading to a fragmented system,” study senior author Gary Smith, director of the Center for Injury Research and Policy, said in a news release. “A coordinated national system would help us prevent amusement-ride-related injuries through better injury surveillance and more consistent enforcement of standards.”

SERVING MONROE, ONTARIO AND WAYNE COUNTIES in good A monthly newspaper published by

Health Rochester–GV Healthcare Newspaper

Local News, Inc. Distribution: 30,000 copies. To request home delivery ($15 per year), call 585-421-8109.

In Good Health is published 12 times a year by Local News, Inc. © 2013 by Local News, Inc. All rights reserved. 106 Cobblestone Court Dr., Suite 121 – P.O. Box 525, Victor NY 14564. • Phone: 585-421-8109 • Email: Editor & Publisher: Wagner Dotto Associate Editor: Lou Sorendo Writers and Contributing Writers: Jim Miller, Deborah J. Sergeant, Gwenn Voelckers, Anne Palumbo, Ernst Lamothe Jr. Advertising: Jennifer Wise, Donna Kimbrell Layout & Design: Chris Crocker Officer Manager: Laura Beckwith No material may be reproduced in whole or in part from this publication without the express written permission of the publisher. The information in this publication is intended to complement—not to take the place of—the recommendations of your health provider. Consult your physician before making major changes in your lifestyle or health care regimen.

June 2013 •

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper

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Stuttering Treatment!


Intensive Summer Program for Teens and Adults July 8–26, 2013

Susan Cochrane, MA/CCC/SLP Board Recognized Specialist in Fluency Disorders 585-329-0616

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June 2

Memorial lacrosse tournament benefits Kids The Sixth Annual Jeff Milano-Johnson Memorial Lacrosse Tournament will be held from 8:30 a.m. – 3 p.m., June 2, at Unity Health System Total Sports Experience, 880 Elmgrove Road, Rochester. The event is a fundraiser for Rochester Kids, the memorial fund established in memory of Jeff MilanoJohnson, the 14-year-old lacrosse player who died of a ruptured brain aneurysm in 2007 while warming up for a Pittsford varsity lacrosse game. The fund provides scholarships for Rochester city youth, funding for ROCE6. which sponsors three inner city lacrosse teams, support to evidence-based-local nonprofits targeting Rochester families, and bereavement support services for families whose children have died before their time. For more information, call 585-721-1078 or visit www.

June 10

Seminar to help those who recently lost their jobs Have you been affected by a layoff or downsizing? Tracey Aiello, a financial consultant with Angelo Planning Group, LLC, will sponsor a seminar that will discuss issues affecting people who recently lost their job. The seminar will help attendants understand several issues, including options for health care and Cobra; differences between group vs. individual life insurance; what to do with 401k and 403b plans; taxation of withdrawals from a 401k / 403b and

IRA if you have one; and how to design a portfolio to minimize the downside risk. The seminar will take place from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. June 10 at Medaille College, 1880 Winton Road S., suite 1, Rochester. Registration is required and seats are limited. Call 585-402-5284 to make a reservation or email MCoon@A

June 17

Fibromyalgia group discusses role of foods A seminar titled “Choose My Plate” organized by the New Fibromyalgia Support Group will discuss the role fruits and vegetable in people’s health. It will teach healthy choices on fresh, frozen, and canned fruits and vegetables. It will also teach how to use fruits and vegetables as quick snacks, juices, and easy-to-cook recipes. Recipes and demonstrations will be performed. The seminar will be led by Rose Sweeney, community educator with Cornell Extension of Monroe County. It will take place from 12:30 –1:30 p.m., June 17, at Westside YMCA, 920 Elmgrove Road, Gates. To register or for more information, contact Julie Montgomery at juliem@rochesterymca. org or call 585-752-1562.

June 27, 28, 29

Event to bring NYT’s best selling authors The Lightheart Institute is presenting a multi-day conference featuring local experts and world-renowned speakers and New York Time’s best-selling authors designed to equip all of Roch-

ester, and beyond, with self-empowerment, self-awareness and self-care tools. Titled “Touch The Sky . . . from Tragedy to Triumph; Tapping into the Power of the Human Spirit,” the event is in response to the tragedy that struck the West Webster Fire Department last December and other tragic events such as the Newtown, Conn., shooting. “The LightHeart Institute feels a compelling need to provide an opportunity that focuses on hope, health, healing and vitality that will equip all of Rochester, and beyond, with tools of self-empowerment, self-awareness and self-care,” reads a press release. The event will take place at June 27, 28, 29 at Nazareth College Arts Center. For more information, call 585-288-6160 or visit www.

July 8

Golf tournament at Midvale Country Club benefits VNH Visiting Nurse Service of Rochester (VNS) will hold July 8 its 22nd Annual Golf for Hospice Tournament to benefit the Visiting Nurse Hospice program. This tournament and dinner reception will be held at Penfield’s exclusive Midvale Country Club. Golfers without a Midvale membership have the opportunity to play the award-winning course during this event. Proceeds from the tournament will benefit Visiting Nurse Hospice, which provides end-of-life care for patients and their families in their homes, comfort care homes, and inpatient settings. The bereavement program at Visiting Nurse Hospice offers care to families to help address feelings of loss, grief, and sorrow before and after a loved one has died, at no cost to them. These services include support groups, individual counseling, an evening of remembrance, and volunteer services such as companionship and supportive phone calls. Since bereavement services are not covered under Medicare, this important program is dependent on donor generosity. For more information, call Kate Whitman at 585-787-8714 or visit

Library Announces Large Print Book Discussion Kits For People with Low Vision The Outreach Department of the Central Library of Rochester & Monroe County is issuing new book discussion kits with books in large print and on CD. The new kits each contain four large print books, four books on CD and eight large print discussion guides. In addition, if the book has been made into a movie the DVD is included in the kit. “The popularity of book discussion groups has greatly increased over the

last couple of years,” says Elizabeth Barry of the Monroe County Library System’s Outreach Department. “There are literally hundreds of book discussion kits in the library system, but none for the visually impaired members of the community. We saw a real need to provide this service so that everyone can join in book discussions.” The library system approached local Lions Club chapters for donations to start this project. Their generosity

was matched by the New York and Bermuda Lions Foundation, and that combination provided enough money to begin purchasing the kits. Initially there are 13 kits, and more will be added as the collection grows. Although these kits are targeting people with low vision, they are available to anyone with a valid Monroe County Library System card by calling the Outreach Department at 428-8312.

Canandaigua VA Medical Center Offers E-Donate to Support Local Veterans The Canandaigua VA Medical Center announced the availability of E-Donate, an online donation option at that will provide community members who wish to give back to veterans at the medical center a simple and safe way to pledge their support to the fund of their choice. “We’ve known for years that our citizens want to show their support to the service members who defended their freedoms,” said Medical Center Director Craig Howard. “While not everyone will have the time to volun-

teer, now anyone can take five minutes online to thank Veterans in any number of ways.” The E-Donate option allows donors to select from a number of funds at the medical center they wish to donate to. Additionally, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administrative costs are appropriated, so donors can be sure 100 percent of their donations go to the funds they select and the Veteran patients they are choosing to support. “Donated money at our medical center supports recreational activities, our hospice program, homeless veter-

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

ans program, purchases birthday and holiday gifts as well as an assortment of other veteran needs,” said Voluntary Service Chief Robin Johnson. “People would be amazed if they could see how far their dollar goes toward making a difference in the lives of the people who dedicated themselves to us first.” Donors can find the E-Donate button at The actual donation is made through a secure site at the Department of Treasury’s A minimum of $5 is required for online donation.

Survey: More Than 4 in 10 U.S. Teens Text While Driving

State laws banning behavior don’t seem to help much, researchers find


orty-three percent of American high school students admit to texting while driving, according to a new study. The findings show that too many teens are ignoring warnings about the risks of this dangerous habit. Research has demonstrated that texting while driving increases the risk of a crash by 23 times, and many experts say texting while driving is more dangerous than driving while intoxicated. Researchers analyzed data from about 7,800 U.S. high school students who had their driver’s license and took part in the 2011 survey on youth behaviors conducted yearly by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The teens were asked if they had texted while driving in the past 30 days, and 43 percent said they had. Males were more likely to text while driving than females — 46

percent vs. 40 percent, respectively. The likelihood of texting while driving increased with age: 52 percent of those over age 18, 46 percent of 17-year-olds, 33 percent of 16-year-olds and 26 percent of 15-year-olds. The study also found that teens who texted while driving were more likely to engage in other risky behaviors, such as drinking and driving, having unprotected sex, and using indoor tanning devices. “Although teens may be developmentally predisposed to engage in risktaking behavior, reducing the prevalence of texting while driving is an obvious and important way to ensure the health and safety of teen drivers, their passengers and the surrounding public,” said principal investigator Alexandra Bailin, a research assistant at Cohen Children’s Medical Center of New York.

South Not the Fattest Part of U.S. After All Researcher says West North Central part of the country is the country’s fattest area


t goes against popular belief, but a recent study from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) shows that the southern region of the United States is not the fattest part of the country. “The obesity epidemic is overwhelming the U.S., and there’s this strong perception that Mississippi and Alabama are number one and number two in obesity — fighting for last place,” said George Howard, professor in the department of biostatistics in the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health. Howard said that according to data from the long-running REGARDS (Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke) study, the West North Central part of the country, which includes North and South Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas and Missouri, is the fattest area — with a 41 percent obese population. These findings were recently published online by the journal Obesity. “We were thinking since people

living in the South are generally more hypertensive and have higher rates of diabetes and stroke, it would be the fattest region,” Howard explained. “But when we looked at our data, people in the South were really not the fattest.” The study grouped states into regions used by the U.S. Census Bureau in order to compare data to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) to confirm the findings from REGARDS. Mississippi and Alabama are part of the East South Central region of the U.S., which also includes Tennessee and Kentucky. REGARDS ranked the region fifth out of nine regions with 34 percent obese, and the NHANES showed that it was seventh out of eight regions with only 31 percent obese (NHANES ranks fewer regions than REGARDS because NHANES has fewer measurements collected for reporting the New England states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut). June 2013 •

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper

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Your Doctor

By Lou Sorendo

Dr. Louis Eichel RGH chief of urology talks about career, prostate cancer prevention and robotic surgery Q.: What motivated you to choose urology as a specialty? A.: In some surgical specialties, you refer a patient, you do the surgery, and once things are over with, they leave you and you have performed your function. I enjoy relationships with patients and I wanted people to think of me as their doctor. Urology is somewhat unique in that there are some conditions that we treat where it’s a quick thing, but there are lots of conditions where we form long-term relationships with patients. Q.: What most challenges you in regards to the practice of urology? A.: One of the biggest challenges in almost any area of medicine these days is just being able to spend enough time with each individual person to maintain a relationship. That’s important to me, but at the same time I am very busy. Balancing that is always a challenge and I think I’ve been pretty good at doing it. Q.: How much of your working day is spent attending to administrative tasks and how much do you spend on the “front lines” of healthcare? A.: I am in private practice in a sixman urology group called the Center for Urology and also chief of the division of urology at Rochester General Hospital. I spend probably an hour to two hours a day on administrative things for the department. The bulk of my day is practicing clinical medicine and not administrative. I operate almost every day and I do surgery five days a week. I see patients in my office three days a week. Early mornings and late nights are spent doing administrative work and the bulk of my day is clinical. Q.: How prevalent is prostate cancer? A.: It is one of the more common men’s health issues. There is a lot of controversy regarding screening for prostate cancer. I have been going out of my way doing television interviews recently talking about prostate cancer screening. The controversy arises because the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has recommended against prostate cancer screening, citing that historically there are men who had low-grade or low-risk prostate cancer that may not have needed aggressive treatment and with that a lot of side-effects. Prostate cancer is unlike most other cancers in that it’s not just one disease entity that is always really bad. It’s more of a spectrum type of disease. There are approximately 40 percent of men who develop what we call lowrisk prostate cancer that can often just be observed and don’t need aggressive treatment for it. About 25 percent are Page 6

diagnosed with very high-risk prostate cancer which can be deadly and be much more aggressive, causing people a lot of morbidity or death. The controversy exists because historically, men were treated aggressively and a lot probably didn’t need that treatment. Nowadays I think the argument is more about knowing your risk. We know now that it is important to stratify people with prostate cancer in terms of their risk [by looking at] certain features of the disease. If they have in more advanced stages or have more aggressive-looking cancer when samples are looked at under a microscope, those patients need more aggressive treatment. But some people can be watched. Prostate cancer has no actual symptoms in the early stages. Once a patient develops symptoms of prostate cancer, it is always too late to cure. In my opinion, screening for prostate cancer is about just knowing your risk. Screening for prostate cancer includes a PSA [prostate-specific antigen] or blood test and a rectal exam. If you are have a PSA that’s elevated or a nodule on your prostate, that leads to a biopsy. If it actually shows cancer, we can look at the blood test level and look at rectal exam findings to see if there is a nodule or not. We can see what the tumor sample looks like under a microscope in terms of how aggressive it. You can then stratify people to determine whether they can be observed or whether they need to be treated. Q.: What types of preventive measures can a man take to help thwart prostate cancer and improve his prostate health? A.: The kind of measures to maintain

good prostate health are the same to maintain good health in general, and that is to eat a healthier diet high in anti-oxidants with lots of vegetables and non-meat-based protein. Also, exercise and generally staying healthy so that your body is in a less inflammatory state helps. It also helps to decrease your risk of other major health risks, like obesity. A prostate-healthy diet is a healthy diet for anything. Honestly, most of the studies looking at dietary supplementation for prostate health haven’t been found to make large gains in that area. If you’re preventing prostate cancer, you’re preventing other types of cancer. Q.: How has laparoscopy/robotic surgery revolutionized the manner in which prostate cancer is treated? What are its benefits to both surgeon and patient? A.: Right now, there is a lot of controversy about the benefits of robotic surgery. The main point is the robot is a surgical instrument and doesn’t actually have any artificial intelligence. It doesn’t make any kind of motions or does anything that a surgeon is not making it do. It basically translates the surgeon’s hand motion into motions inside the patient. The benefit of robotic or any kind of laparoscopic surgery is that it is done through much smaller incisions so that the patient’s recovery is faster. Particularly with robotic instrumentation, there is a very bright, magnified 3-D view of the surgical field, which I believe gives some degree of precision. With that said, that doesn’t have anything to do with the surgeon’s skill. Basically, the robot is a surgical instrument or surgical tool, just like a scissors, retractor or pair of forceps would be. In terms of having successful surgery, that really comes to the surgeon’s experience and their expertise with the equipment they use. If you have an experienced surgeon who is an expert in using surgical robotics and is an expert at doing that type of surgery, then the outcome is likely to be good. If someone is not very skilled regardless of what type of equipment they are using, there is a likelihood of a problem or the chance of a poor outcome is going to be higher. There are lots of surgeons who are very good at open prostate surgery, where the incision is bigger and the recovery time might be longer. In terms of

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

the long-term outcome, such as whether the patient is cured of cancer or has any side effects from the surgery, there haven’t been any major differences between the two techniques. There is no doubt that the patient’s recovery time is better, the patient feels better faster and they leave the hospital faster. There are some studies showing the rate of blood transfusion is lower. There are benefits to it, but in the end, it comes down to the surgeon being responsible for making sure he is a master of his craft. Q.: Do you see laparoscopy/robotic surgery growing in prevalence in the near future? Is technology going to be playing a larger role in terms of diagnosis and treatment? A.: There is no doubt. Believe it or not, robotic surgery has been around for over 10 years. I started doing robotic surgery in 2002 and I’ve been doing robotic surgery from fairly early on when it was developing and have continued to do it. Robotic surgery in and of itself sounds high tech, but it is not a brand new process. It is an established type of surgery and has been around for a long time and has a fairly good long-term track record. With that said, I believe medicine and surgery is a lifelong learning process and there are constant developments being made like in any area of technology. Surgery technology started to advance at an ever- increasing pace. Laparoscopic surgery has been around since the 1980s. I believe we are just seeing the beginning now of the types of developments that are going to be made. One involves the number of incisions necessary to do surgery. There is LESS surgery (laparo-endoscopic single-site surgery) where a surgeon operates exclusively through a single entry point. Another major area of development is NOTES (natural orifice translumenal endoscopic surgery) where endoscopes are placed through natural orifices such as the anus or esophagus. It is an experimental surgical technique where “scar-less” abdominal operations can be performed with an endoscope passed through a natural orifice then through an internal incision in the stomach, vagina, bladder or colon, avoiding any external incisions or scars. Other areas of development include intra-operative imaging. It provides real-time imaging of a patient’s anatomy with high-quality images and a large field-of-view in several dimensions.


Louis Eichel is the director of minimally invasive surgery, Center of Urology, Rochester, and the chief of the division of urology at Rochester General Hospital. Birthdate: 43 Birthplace: New York City Current residence: Pittsford Education: Bachelor of Arts, environmental science, University of Rochester; medical degree, University of Rochester; residency, urology, University of Rochester; fellowship, laparoscopy/robotic surgery/endourology, University of California, Irvine, Orange, Calif. Affiliations: American Urological Association; Society of Endourology; Society of Laparoscopic Surgeons; Minimally Invasive Robotics Association Personal: Wife Dianne, with children Sam and Ava Hobbies: Cycling (mostly mountain biking); skiing; running; spending time with family

Summer, No Relief for Allergy Sufferers By Ernst Lamothe Jr.


ith summer come trips to Charlotte and Durand Eastman beaches, long lines for custard at Abbott’s, barbecues and family camping trips. Each of those activities brings pleasure and pain for allergy suffers. Most people think allergy problems affect individuals during the spring when everything starts to bloom. But once the bloom stops, issues still persist. Summer allergens include mold, insect stings, poison ivy, sunscreen and even seasonal fruits. “Allergies can be a problem all year around, and in Rochester, it’s definitely not unusual for them to occur during the summer,” said physician Anitha Shrikhande, who works at Westside Allergy Care, which has several facilities in the area. “Around the summer, you have grass and a lot of pollen blowing in the air in June and July that can cause havoc.” Allergies are when a person’s immune system reacts to something that is usually harmless. A person who is predisposed to allergy will react to pollens or mold spores, animal dander and dust mites. Shrikhande, who is board-certified in allergy and immunology, said during the summer you could typically find a mold called alternaria that commonly causes allergic reaction. If you’re allergic to mold and you breathe in alternaria spores, chances are your immune system will go haywire, which could include similar symptoms to hay fever like sneezing, itchy and watery eyes, runny nose and congestion. “You can find alternaria on hot, breezy days inside the soil. So when it is blown around the area, that is when people who are allergic are likely to have more symptoms,” said

Shrikhande. Physician Peter Deane of Allergy Asthma Immunology of Rochester said medical officials used to start evaluating pollen counts in mid-March. But with weather nationwide being warmer than expected, they now target February as the beginning. Warmer months means thawing starts earlier and Deane trees begin blooming sooner. In his 18-years of experience, he sees this as one of the biggest factors in why allergy suffers had significant increases in problems even before the spring hit. And summer doesn’t make it any easier. “You have to deal with ragweed and grass taking off when temperatures are hot and humid, which also tends to lead to mold appearing. And mold can also be a year-round problem,” said Deane, who sees adults and children over 5 years of age for allergies and asthma, and adults for rheumatologic problems. “Plus the hot air itself bothers people just because of its heaviness.” He suggest allergy suffers wear surgical masks when doing outdoor tasks such as gardening and mowing their lawns. In addition, keeping the windows closed while driving will prevent pollen and other irritants from traveling into the vehicle. “Unfortunately some of the best relief comes from staying inside and running the air conditioning,” added Deane, who also suggests having a dehumidifier in your basement during the warm, summer months. “I know that is hard for people who like to be

outdoors.” Shrikhande believes those who suffer intense allergies in two or more seasons of the year may want to consider allergy shots, which can change the way the immune system responds to the things that causes allergies. Medications such as antihistamines and nasal steroid sprays also work to relieve symptoms, but sometimes they may not be enough. Starting allergy shots is a long-term commitment. Typically, the shots start out once a week, and then as the body adjusts, it goes from once every two weeks to monthly shots. “We tell people it could take four months before you start noticing improvements and you should be ready to take shots three to six years,” said Shrikhande. “It’s long term therapy that can really alter your immune system response, but you can’t give up too early or you won’t see the improvements you seek.” Allergy suffers also may want to see an allergist, who is the only physician specifically trained to evaluate, diagnose and manage food allergies. Allergists can also perform special tests to evaluate for allergic skin conditions and are experts in drug allergy.

How to deal with summer allergies • Try to stay indoors whenever the pollen count is high. • Keep your doors and windows closed whenever possible to keep allergens out. Use an air purifier. • Clean air filters in your home often. Clean bookshelves, vents, and other places where pollen can collect. • Wash bedding and rugs in hot water to eliminate dust mites and other allergens. • Wash your hair, shower, and change clothing after going outside to wash away pollen. • Vacuum often. Wear a mask, because vacuuming can kick up pollen, mold, and dust trapped in your carpet. • Keep the humidity in your house between 30 and 50 percent to prevent the growth of dust mites. Souce: WebMD

Skin Cancers of the Feet Are Often Painless Podiatrist: Signs of foot cancer include non-healing sores, bumps that crack and bleed


ew York State Podiatric Medical Association (NYSPMA), which represents more than 1,200 foot specialists across the Empire State, is urging New Yorkers to pay special attention to the skin on both the top and bottom of their feet. While harmful sunrays may be the primary cause of skin cancers on parts of the body that receive sun exposure, skin cancers of the feet are more often related to viruses. Doctors of Podiatric Medicine (DPMs) are foot specialists, trained to recognize and treat conditions that present on the skin of the foot. Skin on the feet, especially on the bottom, is often overlooked during routine medical exams. According to Gary Stones, NYSPMA’s president and a practicing podiatrist, skin cancers of the feet have several features in common. “Most are painless, but often there’s a history of recurrent cracking, itching, bleeding or ulceration,” he cau-

tions. “These cancers often go undiagnosed until another issue presents itself near the affected site,” added Stones. Checking for warning signs is something anyone can do, paying particular attention to changes such as non-healing sores, bumps that crack and bleed, nodules with rolled edges or scaly areas. Examining the bottom of the foot is critical. Basal cell cancers may appear as pearly white bumps or oozy patches that can get crusty like other open sores. On the foot, basal cell cancers often look like non-cancerous skin tumors or benign ulcers. Squamous cell carcinoma is the most common type of skin cancer of the foot. They usually are confined to the skin and do not spread. However, when advanced, some can become more aggressive and spread throughout the body. This form of cancer can begin as a small scaly bump, which

may appear inflamed. There can be cracking or bleeding. Sometimes it begins as a hard projecting, callous-like lesion. While painless, this type of skin cancer may be itchy. It can resemble a plantar wart, a fungal infection, eczema, an ulcer or other common dermatological conditions. Skin cancers on the lower extremity may have a different appearance that those arising on the rest of the body. So to test, the podiatrist will perform a skin biopsy. This is a simple procedure in which a small sample of the skin is obtained and sent to a lab where a skin pathologist examines the tissue in greater detail. If it turns out the lesion is skin cancer, the podiatrist will recommend the best course of treatment. Each year, approximately 2 million Americans are diagnosed with nonmelanoma skin cancers.

June 2013 •

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper

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Live Alone & Thrive

By Gwenn Voelckers

Practical tips, advice and hope for those who live alone

A ‘Silver Linings Playbook’ for Living Alone


ife doesn’t always go according to plan. For many women and men, midlife has brought unexpected changes, some by choice, others by chance. Whether divorced or widowed, they find themselves struggling to make sense of their losses and life circumstances. I talk a lot about attitude in my “Live Alone and Thrive” workshops. Experience has taught me that our attitudes (thoughts and beliefs) determine the life we have. If you believe you will be lonely, penniless and miserable on your own, chances are good you will be. On the other hand, if you adopt the attitude that living alone could present opportunities for personal growth and new relationships, you will likely rediscover meaning and joy in your new, independent life. Research suggests that people who count their blessings and see the “silver lining” are happier, healthier, and more optimistic It was Norman Vincent Peale who said, “Change your thoughts and you change your world.” I’m a believer in that quote — and work hard to live by it. I’m convinced that if you don’t like the results you are getting in your life, you need to take a look at changing the attitudes that are producing those results. You have a choice. Choose to focus

on your strengths and your gifts. Use this time on your own to define and create a life that is consistent with your dreams and desires. To get there — to feel the way you want to feel — embrace an attitude that will inspire and guide you. And banish negative thinking. Negative thinking will only get in the way of your goal to feel better and to have the life you want. Below are a few tips to help you steer clear of pessimistic thinking: Turn it off. When that internal dialog in your head turns negative, turn it off! Catch yourself and redirect your thinking. Here’s an example of a negative thought that can be redirected: “I’ve lost my chance at happiness. All my friends are married, and here I am alone. I don’t think I can do this.” This can be reframed into something much more positive: “I may not feel on top of the world today, but I can do this. I am resourceful and confident I can create a life that is rewarding and full of people and experiences that bring me joy.” While redirecting your thoughts

KIDS Corner 40 Percent of Parents Give Young Kids Cough/Cold Medicine That They Shouldn’t


hildren can get five to 10 colds each year, so it’s not surprising that adults often turn to overthe-counter cough and cold medicines to relieve their little ones’ symptoms. But a new University of Michigan poll shows that many are giving young kids medicines that they should not use. More than 40 percent of parents reported giving their children under age 4 cough medicine or multi-symptom cough and cold medicine, according to the latest University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on Children’s Health. Twenty-five percent gave those children decongestants. In 2008, the federal Food and Drug Administration issued an advisory that these over-the-counter medicines not be used in infants and children under age 2. They have not been proven effective Page 8

for young children and may cause serious side effects, says Matthew M. Davis, director of the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on Children’s Health. In response to the FDA, manufacturers of over-the-counter cough and cold products changed their labels back in 2008, to state that the medicines should not be used for children under 4 years old. “These products don’t reduce the time the infection will lasts and misuse could lead to serious harm,” says Davis. “What can be confusing, however, is that often these products are labeled prominently as ‘children’s’ medications. The details are often on the back of the box, in small print. That’s where parents and caregivers can find instructions that they should

might feel contrived at first, actively choosing to alter your thinking will make an important difference in your life. Indulge and then move on. If you can’t just turn off that negative thinking — if it keeps seeping back in — give yourself a good five minutes to bask in your negative thoughts, then stop it, and redirect your thinking. Set a timer, if you need to. When the alarm sounds, it’s time to move on and refocus. I’ve done this myself and it works. Be your own best friend. When the negative thinking and self-doubt emerge, talk to yourself as if you were your own best friend and give yourself some good advice. What would your best friend tell you? He or she would probably acknowledge your feelings, but go on to say, “Come on now; that kind of thinking will get you nowhere,” and then remind you of how wonderful you are and how many people adore and count on you. Do this for yourself. Be your own best friend. Try to find some humor in your downward spiral. Sometimes we can dig ourselves into such a deep emotional

not be used in children under 4 years old,” Davis says. The side effects from use of cough and cold medicines in young children may include allergic reactions, increased or uneven heart rate, drowsiness or sleeplessness, slow and shallow breathing, confusion or hallucinations, convulsions, nausea and constipation.

hole that the depth of our negativity can almost become comical. It’s not because our feelings aren’t legitimate, it’s because we’ve allowed them to spiral completely out of control and absurdly out of proportion. When this happens, realize you’ve gone off the proverbial deep end and try to laugh at yourself a little. It helps if you share your misery with someone who will help you “keep it real.” That person for me is my sister. She’ll tolerate my tragic tales of woe for just so long and then she’ll give me that “look.” Inevitably, we end up dissolving in tears of laughter and — poof! — my cloud of negativity is lifted. Avoid hanging out with negative people. Complainers, whiners, moaners — these people will bring you down, reinforce your fears, and undermine your confidence. Avoid these people. Instead, reach out and nurture relationships with people who love life and who want to live fully, regardless of their marital status. Enthusiasm is contagious. Put yourself with people who make you feel good about yourself and about life. Healthy change and personal growth is next to impossible when one is immersed in negative thinking. Want to feel better about being on your own? Change or shift your thinking. Living without a spouse or significant other need not be a period of diminishing opportunity. With the right attitude, it can be a time of expanding possibilities. Embrace it. And look for the silver lining. Gwenn Voelckers is the founder and facilitator of Live Alone and Thrive, empowerment workshops for women held throughout the year in Mendon, New York. For information about her workshops or to invite Gwenn to speak, call 585-624-7887, e-mail:

The poll found that use of the cough and cold medicines in children age 4 and under did not differ by parent gender, race/ethnicity or by household income. “Products like these may work for adults, and parents think it could help their children as well. But what’s good for adults is not always good for children,” says Davis.

Kids & Lawn Mowers


ips to help reduce the risk of a lawn mower injury among kids: • Children should not ride on lawn mowers as passengers. They can fall and be caught under the mower. • Clear the mowing area of objects including twigs, stones and toys that can be picked up and thrown by the lawn mower blades. • Wear closed-toed shoes with slipproof soles while mowing. • Consider hearing protection for louder mowers. • Use a mower with a control that stops it from moving forward if the handle is let go. • Do not pull the mower backward or mow in reverse unless absolutely necessary, and carefully look for children behind you when you do. • Make sure that all children are indoors or at a safe distance away from the area that you are mowing before you turn on the mower.

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

• Make sure your child is old enough to handle the responsibilities that are associated with using a lawn mower. Children younger than 16 should not be allowed to operate riding mowers, and those younger than 12 should not be allowed to use walk-behind mowers. • Before you allow your child to mow the lawn alone, spend time showing him or her how to do the job safely. Supervise your child’s work until you are sure that he or she can manage the task alone. • Store the fuel for the mower out of reach of children. Start and refuel mowers outdoors, not in a garage or a shed. Mowers should be refueled with the motor turned off and cool. Never let children refuel the engine. Source: Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

Life After a Transplant Recipients share their personal experiences, their fear, their feeling of relief By Ernst Lamothe Jr.


ach person remembers the day that changed their life. One Perinton man was simply walking in his home when something didn’t feel right, while the other could barely walk a step without taking an uncomfortable breath. Another needed new lungs in hopes of even taking another breath. They all needed a different organ transplant to save their life and none of them had a long time to wait. Eventually their wishes were answered to varying degrees and they joined the Transplant Awareness Organization of Greater Rochester. The nonprofit organization is dedicated to improving the quality of life of transplant candidates, recipients and their families. The former patients share their personal experiences and complement the counseling provided by physicians, social workers and other health care professionals. These are stories of people who have persevered through the agony of waiting for a donor, the jubilation of receiving one, the fear of surgery and the relief of a fully functional new organ.

Liver Transplant

Blood seemed to be the problem for Michael Yendrzeski. The life-sustaining liquid was betraying him, either spilling into organs that didn’t need it or not flowing into the intended places in his body. First, he started bleeding into his stomach in 1999 due to veracious veins problems that sent him to Highland Hospital emergency department. “I almost kissed the world goodbye. That was how bad I was feeling,” said Yendrzeski, 72, of Fairport. “I never had those symptoms before and my body felt so weak.” Doctors had to band the veins in his esophagus to chock up the blood supply so he wouldn’t continuously bleed out. His body continued to deteriorate and he was soon diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver. The disease is often associated with alcoholism. However, Yendrzeski didn’t drink. He was placed on a regional donors’ list for his damaged liver.

With his abdomen ballooning with fluid that was not running through the liver and pancreas or being filtered out through the kidney, his problems worsened. “Every month, I had to go to the hospital and have fluid sucked out of my body a couple liters at a time. I felt like I was walking around like a pregnant woman and I couldn’t eat because any food put pressure on my stomach and made me feel horrible,” added Yendrzeski. The ordeal caused him to go from a robust 215-pound man to 145 pounds of self-described skin and bones. “He was looking so sick and I could see him dying in front of my eyes,” said Deb Yendrzeski, his wife. “My father had died six months before and my husband was looking like a skeleton.” Then on May 25, 2002, after several false alarms about the possibility of a life-saving donation, he received the good news. The surgery took half the usual time and he went home after a week. He got a haircut to celebrate his new lease on life. Three days later, he was back in the hospital. “I got a staph infection and there was a blood clot in the artery leading to my liver and that liver couldn’t sustain enough blood to survive. I would need another one to live,” said Yendrzeski. In true miracle form, hospital officials expanded the donor search nationwide and found one in Washington state less than two weeks later. The second surgery occurred and it was a perfect match for his A-negative blood type. “When they told me he needed the second surgery I almost collapsed,” said his wife. “It was just devastating but he has survived and is still with me.” And he eventually gained back the weight and color in his skin. “I was 60 years old when I was starting to have the problem but felt like I was 10 years older. Now I am 72 and feel so much better,” said Yendrzeski.

Lung Transplant

Geoff Foley started walking up the stairs of his Perinton home in the summer of 2002 when all of a sudden breathing became difficult. It was a strange feeling for a man who exercised and enjoyed playing tennis and golf. His life suddenly changed after his primary care physician told him to get a chest X-rays. “When the radiologist saw me, he told me my lungs looked like hell. I knew it couldn’t be a good sign,” said Foley, 66. “But what he told me next is what really shocked me.” Foley was diagnosed Geoff Foley of Perinton with his wife Lois and two of their grandchildren, Andrew Smolowyk (rught) and Ryan with idiopathic pulmoSmolowyk. He had a double lung transplant in 2005. nary fibrosis or a very rare case of lung disease. Not only was the shortness of breath an told me if I made it through the night I odd feeling for him, but hearing that he would need a transplant.” For a decade, he had procedures had lung cancer when he didn’t smoke such as bypass valve replacement. He really took him aback, along with the was connected to an IV, which pumped fact that there was no known cure. medicine into his body that was supStrong Hospital doctors explained it posed to be “jet fuel for the heart.” But was degenerative and he would have 18 months to two years to live. His only problems persisted. “There were times where I figured hope was a double lung transplant, I should get my affairs in order because made even more difficult because he I might not live long,” said Bean, of was 6 foot, 6 inches. Fairport. “Those 10 years were miserHe waited three years until April able.” 2005 before he found a donor because He decided to retire early from of the waiting list and also because he Xerox Corp. because he couldn’t keep was dealing with rheumatoid arthritis. his energy level up. “I used to be the The surgery was successful guy who was at work before the guards “You are never the same after havcame in and the last person to leave. ing a surgery like that. They say the average survival time is five years with Then I became the guy who could barely drag myself in at 8:30 a.m., and a donated lung and so far I am on year nine out of 10 times I would fall asleep eight so I am doing well,” said Foley. in my office.” “The reality is there are some people He received a donor heart at age who don’t get off the operating table so even though my retirement hasn’t gone 61 and soon his vitals increased, his energy rose and he was able to see his the way I envisioned, I am so thankful daughter receive her doctorate in crimithat I am still alive.” He spends his time volunteering at nal justice from Temple University. Christ Church of Pittsford and enjoying Above all, he was able to spend many more years with his biggest support his wife, Lois, his three children and two grandchildren. Foley has spent the system, his wife, Phyllis. “It was a slower recovery but I past few years collecting pictures and made it,” said Bean. “ But without my other items from his life in England wife, I simply wouldn’t be here.” and in the states to give to his grandchildren. “You never know how long you are going to last so I wanted them to have a book where they could turn to anytime and learn more about their grandfather,” said Foley. “After you go through something like this, you realize how important relationships are.”

Heart Transplant

Michael Yendrzeski, a 72-year-old Fairport resident, has liver transplant in 2002. “He was looking so sick and I could see him dying in front of my eyes,” said his wife, Deb Yendrzeski, about his appearance before the transplant.

Norman Bean was having trouble even walking 10 feet without feeling an intense shortness of breathe in 1998. After tests at Strong Hospital, he was diagnosed with congenital heart failure. He tried to joke with the doctors, but inside he was a wreck. “Frankly I broke down and cried. It was all too much of a shock,” said Bean, 68. “Doctors

June 2013 •

Norm Bean who had heart surgery. Here is a picture of him and his wife, Phyllis.

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper

Page 9

Think your kids won’t smoke?

Think again. They see more tobacco marketing than you realize.

1 2 3 4

Posters, displays and rows of tobacco products behind the counter are all forms of tobacco marketing. The Surgeon General’s Report warns that tobacco marketing is a known cause of youth smoking. And studies show, the more tobacco marketing kids see, the more likely they are to smoke. More than 135,000 New York teens are regular smokers.

1/3 of them will die prematurely from diseases caused by smoking.

The tobacco companies think there’s nothing wrong with this kind of marketing.

What do you think? The Smoking & Health Action Coalition of Monroe County works in Monroe County, NY, to eliminate exposure to secondhand smoke, to educate youth about tobacco marketing and to promote living tobacco-free.

A Community Partnership of the New York State Tobacco Control Program.

Page 10

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

This is tobacco

marketing. Kids who see it are more likely to smoke.

It’s a fact:

Research shows that kids who shop at stores with tobacco marketing two or more times a week are 64% more likely to start smoking than their peers who don’t.

Our kids have seen enough. Take action to protect them at

Source: Henriksen, Schleicher, Feighery and Fortmann. Pediatrics: The Official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, July 19, 2010. DOI: 10.1542/peds.2009 3021

June 2013 •

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper

Page 11


By Anne Palumbo

The skinny on healthy eating

Surprising Wonders of


enough to give it a shoutout. • Energy-booster. Watermelon has about 2 ½ teaspoons of sugar per cup (as a comparison: one cup of cherries has 4 ½ teaspoons; one medium banana has 3 ½ teaspoons). But it’s fruit sugar, the kind that provides a steadier stream of energy because it takes longer to digest.

Helpful tips


love a good surprise, especially when it comes to food. I’m happy to report that watermelon, bless its sweet soul, is full of them. Long perceived as a nutritional lightweight, watermelon has become the go-to hot-weather snack among nutrition experts and here’s why: its goodfor-you benefits are too good to ignore. Let’s take a look. • Thirst-quencher. Feeling parched? Reach for a succulent slice of watermelon. This refreshing fruit is 92 percent water, so it helps you stay hydrated in the heat. • Immune-booster. Each one-cup serving of watermelon delivers 20 percent of your daily vitamin C and 17 percent of your vitamin A, two nutrients needed for strong immunity. • Weight-watcher. Clocking in at just 46 calories per cup, watermelon won’t pack on the pounds. Hello, a couple of slices at one sitting; goodbye, tight waistbands. It’s filling, too,

When shopping for a whole watermelon, look for symmetrical watermelons with a yellow spot. The spot means the fruit was allowed to fully ripen before being picked (translation: sweeter and higher in lycopene). Also, the heavier the fruit, the juicier the slices — so pick ones with some heft. Wash and slice within days of purchase; refrigerate leftovers.

thanks to its high water content. • Disease-fighter. Watermelon is loaded with lycopene, a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory that may help reduce the risk of certain cancers and other diseases. In fact, watermelon is the lycopene leader among fresh produce. • Blood pressure-maintainer. Watermelon also provides potassium, an essential mineral that helps control blood pressure. While it’s no banana in the potassium arena, it does have

Watermelon Mojito Salad

pinch of cayenne pepper (optional) Combine watermelon, cucumber, feta and mint in a large bowl. Gently toss, being careful not to crush watermelon. Whisk together the lime juice, zest, and olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste, along with cayenne (if using). Gently toss again. Serve immediately, garnished with fresh mint sprigs.

Serves 4

Anne Palumbo is a lifestyle columnist, food guru, and seasoned cook, who has perfected the art of preparing nutritious, calorie-conscious dishes. She is hungry for your questions and comments about SmartBites, so be in touch with Anne at

3 cups seedless watermelon, cubed 2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded and cubed 2 tablespoons mint leaves, sliced thin ½ cup crumbled feta cheese ¼ cup fresh lime juice (2-3 limes) zest from 2 limes 1 ½ tablespoons virgin olive oil salt and pepper, to taste

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IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

Stop the Press! Juneberries Are Coming Locally grown fruit — new to New York state — hits the market in June-July for the first time By Deborah Jeanne Sergeant

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hat’s there not to like about juneberries? Also known as saskatoons, the cherry-and-almond flavored fruit compares nutritionally to blueberries and stands up to handling better than most other berry varieties. Juneberries, originating in Canada, are new to New York, thanks to a program initiated by Cornell Cooperative Extension. About two dozen farms in Ontario, Wayne, Seneca, Cayuga, Oswego, Broome, Orleans, and Monroe counties have planted juneberries over the past few years and the three-year wait for fruit is over this June, making 2013 the first year of a marketable crop for most of the participating farms. At Robb Farms in Spencerport, coowner Margie Robb is optimistic about a good harvest this year. “They’re all in blossom now so we’re hoping for our first crop this year,” she said. “Hopefully, the blossoms will weather the heat and we’ll have some juneberries. We don’t know how much we’ll get. We have a CSA [community supported agriculture program] so we’re thinking of selling some juneberry jam through it.” Robb Farms boasts 600 mature juneberry plants. To check availability, call 585-352-0814 or visit G and S Orchards in Walworth is the only farm in the Rochester area that is selling juneberries. Owner Stephanie Craft anticipates a good season. “Based on the bloom and weather, we’ll have a good crop,” Craft said. Last season, bad weather destroyed the harvest. This has been the third year since the farm planted a quarteracre of juneberries as part of Cornell’s program to introduce the berries to New York. The farm plans to plant more juneberries this year. To check on availability, visit G and S’s site, or call 315-524-3823. The farm also updates customers via Facebook and Twitter. Jim Ochterski, agriculture and natural resources issues leader and agriculture economic development specialist for Cornell, heads the juneberry introduction program. “By all accounts, it’s been a great season for juneberries,” he said. “The weather has been good to allow steady growth of the flowers and leaves.” Bright, dry weather bodes well for good pollination and thus a bountiful harvest, too. “We haven’t had severe fluctuations in weather and that promotes good growth,” Ochterski said. Though the local farms growing juneberries should receive good harvests, Ochterski fears they will not meet the demand of local consumers once they discover juneberries. “Each year there will be more and more available, so it will be a lucky few that can get them,” he said. “They’re new and in short supply, but this is the first year we’ll have a supply in New York.”

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What’s In a Juneberry Cornell’s juneberry site, www.junberries. org, states that the juneberries’ nutritional profile rivals compares with that of blueberries, providing 23 percent of the RDA for iron (twice as much as blueberries). Juneberries also offer two times potassium as blueberries and offer large amounts of minerals magnesium and phosphorus. They match blueberries in their content of riboflavin, pantothenic acid, folate and vitamins B-6, A, E, and C. It’s easy to see juneberries becoming a new “super fruit” for healthful eaters.

Juneberries mature by mid-June to early July. If you want to try growing your own, Schlabach’s Nursery in Medina (585-798-6198) is the nearest nursery to Rochester selling juneberry plants. “Established plants are carefree,” said Gracia Schlabach, a partner in the business. “Once you get them going, they are easy to grow. They’re easier than blueberries, and more adaptable, since blueberries require acidic soil. They also mature faster. It doesn’t produce as quickly, but it’s in full production in about three years, compared with eight years for blueberries.” The juneberry plants have been so popular that Schlabach’s stock has been selling quickly; call before visiting. The next nearest nursery stocking them is Sollecito Nursery and Landscaping in Syracuse (315-468-1142).

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As Weather Warms, More Tattoos Come to Light By Ernst Lamothe Jr.


hen Killy Moe decided to open his tattoo shop, there were several things that were essential to him. He took great pride in making sure the overall studio shop looked pristine and clean. He believed any tattoo place that didn’t make sterilization and the neatness of its facility a top priority wasn’t serving its clients well. “As a customer, you have to walk into a place and feel comfortable,” said Moe, owner of True Blue Tattoo, 28 Water St in Fredonia. “One of the ways you feel comfortable is when a place looks good and they are proud of their sterilization methods. There are some places, especially in rural communities, that can be very sketchy, rinky-dink suspect places where you wouldn’t want a tattoo. You shouldn’t trust those places.” The summer brings warm weather producing tank tops, shorts and other light clothing, which reveal tattoos that were hibernating under layers of winter clothing. It is often the time when people decide to add to their tattoo collection

and continue to turn their body into walking museums of art. But whether it’s a person’s first or 15th tattoo, safety and sterilization remains paramount in the process. At True Blue Tattoo, every needle is single-use only and then disposed of in a medical sharps container. Any non-disposable items such as piercing clamps get autoclaved. An autoclave, which is also used in hospitals, is a pressurized device designed to maintain a temperature of at least 245 degrees for 35 minutes in order to fully sterilize tattoo equipment. The autoclave sterilizer at True Blue is behind a glass door for the customer to view and is spore tested weekly, which exceeds New York state requirement of quarterly testing. “We are proud that we focus on sterilization,” said Moe, who specializes in Americana tradition tattoos, the kind of images associated with World War I like anchors, battleships and pin-up girls. “And we tell the customer to ask us anything because if you are doing everything right you have no problems answering questions.” Because tattoo needles inject drops of ink into the top layer of the skin, the possibility of infection or disease transmission is always possible if the needles Lea Rizzo, of Rochester, a tattoo artist at Lady Luck Tattoo in Canandaigua, applying a are not sterilized properly. Those tattoo on a customer. She says a talented and responsible tattoo artist ideally has hand receiving the tattoo should see sanitation, gloves, disposable materials and sterilization products to maintain a safe the new sterile needles removed environment for the clients and themselves. from the autoclave bag in front of them. enables airborne bacteria from invad“Everything starts and ends with 2,000-square foot in the Finger Lakes having a solid autoclave and making ing the wound because open flesh can area sure you have done everything to make become a breeding ground for bacteria. Rizzo said a talented and responthings clean and safe,” said Lea Rizzo, At home, experts suggest lightly washsible tattoo artist ideally has hand of Rochester, a tattoo artist at Lady sanitation, gloves, disposable materials ing your tattoo with lukewarm water Luck Tattoo in Canandaigua. The tattoo and sterilization products to maintain and antibacterial soap once the banshop opened in 1997 in a small 650-foot a safe environment for the clients and dages are removed. storefront. Then three years later, they “You want to pat the tattoo dry afthemselves. She believes that the tattoo were so successful they moved into a ter washing it. One of the worst things artists should make the client feel welyou can do is being too rough with comed and relaxed. In doing so, they should be comfortable asking them any your skin right after,” said Moe. questions such as what training their tattoo artist has and what certificates have they accumulated. “You shouldn’t be intimated by the • To eliminate the possibility of tattoo artist,” said Rizzo. “You should contamination, most tattoo materials, be able to see the autoclave in the shop including inks, ink cups, gloves and and ask a bunch of questions. Trust me, it won’t take too long to know if your needles, are single use. tattoo place is doing things right.” • Unsterilized tools such as the needles Dusten Robson, of Rochester, has or gun, or contaminated ink, can lead to several tattoos from a small grenade infection. that he got when he was a teenager to a • In rare cases, people can have an zombie from Half Life video game. He allergic reaction to ink so make sure to tell said he isn’t shy about asking questions your tattoo artist about any allergies and because the tattoo artist is there for ask if the ink contains nickel or mercury. them. • There will be an obvious scabbing and “You’re paying your own money peeling occurring in the first few days so you should leave satisfied,” said after receiving the tattoo, which is normal. Robson. “Plus you should always do your research. Don’t rush the process Continue to put lotion on the tattoo during and just get one because you want it that process. because you have to be happy at the • With the summer also comes the sun. end of the day with permanent ink.” You want to continue putting a minimum Once it’s all over, the tattoo artist of 30 SPF sun block to keep your tattoo either covers the new work of art with fresh for years to come. bandages or saran wrap. Covering it

Safety is Key

Some of Lea Rizzo’s artwork. Page 14

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

Men’sHealth Vitalize Medical Center Focuses on Men’s Health Clinic in Brighton focuses on men’s health, from low T and erectile dysfunction to weight loss and aging prevention By Ernst Lamothe Jr.


or years, it seemed like men either didn’t care much about their health or weren’t as interested in preventive medical education. Doctors would often counsel their male patients — if and when they would ever come into the office for a check up — about ways to maintain their health or how to become proactive. But recently, doctors have seen a slight change in men opening up about health issues and trying to stay ahead of the curve. That prompted phyMadeb sician Ralph Madeb last

fall to open Vitalize Medical Center, 980 Westfall Road, in Brighton, which focuses on men’s weight loss, lower testosterone, and erectile dysfunction. The practice includes Javier Betancourt, a certified personal trainer, whose expertise is male wellness, hormonal balance and body sculpting, and James Donovan, a physician assistant with more than five years experience in male erectile and sexual dysfunction. “Women have always been about preventive measures, but we have noticed that men are starting to get interested in their health,” said Madeb, a medical director of the Finger Lakes Urology Institute and chief of surgery at Newark-Wayne Community

Physician Ralph Madeb, center, and staff members Jason Donovan, right, and Javier Betancourt.

Hospital. “For a long time, men relied on their bravado and neglected their health until something serious would happen. Now we have men coming to talk to us about gaining or losing weight and other medical issues before it is too late.” Vitalize provides a comprehensive arsenal of treatments and therapies including state-of-the-art medical services, preventive treatments, and naturopathic therapies. Madeb and his colleagues spent a full year planning and creating a vision for the center. “The care and services we offer at Vitalize are crucial because the current medical model doesn’t allow for thorough evaluation and treatment of these prominent issues that are inevitably going to occur in all of us as we age,” said Donovan, who specializes in urology, sexual dysfunction, and hormone replacement therapy. “Our philosophy is based more on an anti-aging model, which focuses on disease prevention rather than symptom treatment.” Donovan said in the current health care environment, the profession is limited and bound by a significant amount of bureaucracy. Vitalize allows medical professionals to think outside of that box and return the attention to where it ultimately belongs, the patient. “We are then able to spend the appropriate time and energy required to care for each person as unique individuals,” he added. “Our bodies and health are all encompassing, so medical care must be delivered with this in mind. One specific disease process or medical problem can’t be assessed and treated without affecting many other areas of the body.”

Officials believed it made sense to have a physical fitness expert on staff because obesity is increasing nationwide from children to senior citizens. In Western New York, the obesity problem might be worse considering the climate where half the year remains cold or snowy. They also knew they would need a setting where men could feel comfortable talking about uncomfortable matters like male menopause. While the term male menopause is new and doctors are still split over its exact significance in the medical world, there is one thing where most physicians agree. By the time men hit their mid-30s, they see their testosterone levels start to take a noticeable dip. Testosterone levels gradually declines 1 percent a year after age 30 on average. By the time men hit their 40s and 50s, there is a significant drop that could lead to depression, fatigue, mood changes, memory lapses and loss of muscle tone. By age 70, the decrease in a man’s testosterone level can be as much as 50 percent. “We have seen men go through those changes and they want to start feeling better with themselves,” said Madeb. “They know they have a lack of energy sometimes that comes out of nowhere.” Even though the center does occasionally treat women, officials make it a point to try to schedule each gender on different days and times so they never see each other. Vitalize schedules nights, off hours and Sunday appointments to make it private. “It’s hard enough to get men to want to come to the doctor let alone trying to get them to come during the middle of the day. We wanted to give men flexibility so there would be no excuses,” added Madeb. Madeb said his mission at Vitalize Medical is to offer advance care to get people feeling like their old selves again, both physically and mentally. “I think men also realized that, in general, people are living longer than they used to. So it’s not enough to say you want a Ferrari during your mid life and that’s all. You realize that health is the most important aspect because without your health life can be difficult,” he said.

Vietnam Veterans Could Hold Clue to Future for Today’s Soldiers URMC participating in a study on connection between injuries and Alzheimer’s


ince 2001, more than two million service members have been deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, and studies indicate nearly a third of them have suffered traumatic brain injury (TBI), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or both. The University of Rochester Medical Center is part of an investigation into whether these injuries put the soldiers at greater risk for a future battle — against Alzheimer’s disease. As they begin the study, researchers are turning to veterans of the Vietnam War for help.

“In order to predict what might happen, we wanted to look at a cohort that is about 40 years older to see what the brains of those individuals look like,” says physician Anton P. Porsteinsson, who is overseeing the study at URMC. “Nobody paid much attention to this back in the Vietnam era, but do TBI and PTSD impact your risk of memory disease? Could this point toward additional studies into treatment and prevention of the long-term effects of these injuries?” The University of California at San

Francisco is contacting Vietnam War Veterans who were diagnosed with duty-related TBI, PTSD, or concussions. Healthy volunteers aged 50 to 90 are also needed. Selected veterans from this region will come to URMC to receive a medical exam and undergo blood and cognitive testing, neuroimaging of the brain, and a lumbar puncture. After a year, participants will be given a followup exam and some repeat testing. URMC was chosen as a clinical site for the study because of its advanced

June 2013 •

neuroimaging capabilities, robust Alzheimer’s disease research program, and the sizeable concentration of Vietnam War veterans living within a 150mile radius. Yale University, Columbia University, and Mayo Clinic are among 18 other data collection sites. The $6.5 million Study of Brain Aging in Vietnam War Veterans is funded by the U.S. Department of Defense. For information on participating in the study, call 1-800-773-4883.

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper

Page 15

Men’sHealth Are Dads Healthier Than Non-Dads? By Deborah Jeanne Sergeant


t’s hard to measure whether men are healthier as dads or not; however, a few factors that kids bring into their dad’s life can help them maintain a healthier lifestyle. Exercise may be a component of healthful living that’s severely neglected when a new baby joins the household; however, once the youngsters are able to participate in activities, they often cajole their parents to become more active. Tiffany Sculli, wellness director at Geneva YMCA, has seen this scenario play out again and again. “It’s motivating for the parents,” she said. “We have swimming and parents go in the pool with the children. It gets them more motivated to be active with their child. There are some families who haven’t worked out before but start doing it as a family and start doing things that they didn’t normally do.” Seeking an activity for his son, Dustin, is how Matt Jewell of Webster, a general sales manager at Bob Johnson Chevrolet in Rochester, transformed from a sedentary adult into a first-degree black belt instructor. He reviewed local activities and then selected Kuk Sool Won Korean

martial arts in Ontario. After Dustin practiced a few years, Jewell joined so he could participate with him. When his daughter, Tori, was 5, she joined and soon after, Jewell’s wife, Barb, joined in as well. “I’m a former Marine, but I didn’t have any activity for fitness and health until then,” Jewell said. “It’s been positive in that it gives up a common structure.” Jewell and Dustin, now 12, are first-degree black belts. Barb is a black belt candidate and Tori, 6, is a white belt. “I’d encourage families to find something to get involved in together,” Jewell said. “It’s not do as I say, but do as I do. Kids will do what they see.” The dinner table provides another example of how kids follow their dad’s lead. Most families try to provide the children with balanced meals and it’s tough getting Junior to eat his vegetables if Dad eschews them. “I tell parents it’s their responsibility to expose their children to healthier foods and to prepare and serve them,” said Kacie Cook, dietitian with the University of Rochester Medical Center. “When I work with families, the parents are role-modeling healthier

behavior like eating fruits and vegetables.” Initially after a child is born, the parent’s eating and exercising habits can get off a healthful track; however, it’s important to return to healthful habits once you gain a routine as a family again. “It can be hard to balance personal care and family life,” Cook said. “Self care is something we don’t always take an interest in. I do see common, across the board once men become fathers their healthy lifestyle gets put on hold a little bit.” Many new dads become a lot more conscious of how they drive once they have a baby on board, both for the child’s safety and for their own least they leave their child fatherless. But that’s not always the case. Cindy L. St. George, driving instructor for Empire Safety Council in Clyde, and licensed insurance broker for Christopher Williams Agency, Inc. in Pittsford, said, “It is an individual thing. Some men will change, those that are more responsible.”

She encourages all drivers to “try to slow down, keep their distance from other vehicles, mind the rules of the road more and stop paying more attention to their phone than they do the roadway. Regardless of who is in your car as a passenger — new babies, spouses, boy- or girlfriends, parents, pets, co-workers, etc. — we need to take care of those people or pets and drive more carefully.”

‘Man Food’ Can Be Healthful Food, Too Pizza, burgers, chili, steak, wings: how to make them better By Deborah Jeanne Sergeant


f course, many women like pizza, burgers, chili, steak and other hearty fare. And many men eat healthful, light meals. But in general, the aforementioned foods and others are “man foods” that many guys like. If you’re one of them, you don’t have to sacrifice your favorites to eat healthfully. A few smart substitutions and strategies can help you enjoy all the flavor with less fat and more nutrients. Overall, how you eat any food can make a whole meal more healthful. Kacie Cook, dietitian at the University of Rochester Medical Center Healthy Living Center, advises her patients to fill half their plates with fruits and vegetables. For example, enjoy your slice of pizza, your chicken wings or your nachos, but have a salad along with the main dish to help fill you up and get more nutrients into your meal. “Sometimes men [patients] fear Page 16

they’ll never eat red meat again,” Cook said. “Any food can be in a healthful diet, as long as you’re conscious of portion and are willing to try a healthier version. “When you do have a pizza, I suggest veggie toppings instead of processed meats like pepperoni and sausage which are high in saturated fat and sodium.” Canadian bacon is among the leanest meat you can order, but ask for just half the amount. You likely won’t miss it. Many pizza places will also gladly reduce the amount of cheese for you. Avoid or limit deep dish or pan styles since they contain more fat and calories. Thin crust pizza is the best choice for delivery. If you make it at home, try a whole wheat crust and lean meat. You can also ramp up the spicy flavor pepperoni would bring by using jalapenos or red pepper flakes.

Cook advises men to grill their own burgers at home using leaner meat, keeping the size at four ounces, and topping it better than at the typical burger joint. “Maybe on your burger, put lettuce, tomato and avocado instead of mayonnaise and other condiments that are hiding sodium, sugar and fat,” she said. “You can make it healthier.” The same is true for steaks. Select a loin cut, which is thinner than New York strip or t-bone, where the fat is marbleized. Anne Marie Egan, dietitian with Rochester General Hospital, offered a few more tips. For chili, she suggests lean ground turkey or lean ground beef. You won’t miss the extra fat with all the moisture the chili’s other ingredients offer. “To make it a little healthier, put diced carrots, zucchini, yellow squash, green peppers and even frozen corn in

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

it,” Egan said. “Increase the amount of beans and you won’t be eating as much meat.” When grilling lean ground beef burgers, Egan adds a little olive oil to boost the juiciness. Olive oil adds more fat and calories, but it’s unsaturated fat, which is better for the heart than the fat naturally occurring in 80-percent lean beef. “If you’re going to put cheese on a burger, there are some nice 2-percent provolone, Swiss or cheddar cheese,” Egan said. “Grilled onions, mushrooms and peppers go well, too.” Egan suggests side dishes like salad, roasted sweet corn, whole fruit or French fries baked in canola oil “to make it a balanced meal.” Eating well does not have to mean giving up the foods you love if you tweak how they’re prepared and you eat balanced meals most of the time.


What They Want You to Know:

Hand Surgeons

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By Deborah Jeanne Sergeant

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons states, “Hand surgery is the field of medicine that deals with problems of the hand, wrist, and forearm. Hand surgeons care for these problems with and without surgery. They are specially trained to operate when necessary. Many hand surgeons are also experts in diagnosing and caring for shoulder and elbow problems. “Hand surgeons are orthopedic, plastic, or general surgeons who have additional training in surgery of the hand.” • “As for kitchen safety, a sharp knife is a safe knife. If your knives are dull, they are more likely to slip off the item you are cutting and you must exert more force to get it to cut. Be mindful loading the dishwasher that knife tips are pointed down so you are less likely to stab yourself when Michalko unloading. Don’t put a knife to soak in a soapy sink. You will less likely cut yourself fishing it out later. • “When using any type of power tool, resist the temptation to remove any installed safety guards. Most woodworking injuries happen to people with years of experience and admitted that they removed any guards so they could work faster. Don’t operate power tools under the influence of drugs or alcohol. • “Never reach under a running lawnmower. It sounds obvious, but people still do it. Don’t hold a branch with one hand and use power hedge clippers to trim it. It can easily slip off and trim your fingers instead. • “Although fireworks are illegal in New York, do not hold them in your hand in order to throw it after it is lit. The fuses can be unpredictable. Sparklers and very young children do not go together. They burn incredibly hot and cause severe burns. • “In-line skating is a fun form of exercise but can be a very easy way to break your wrist. Wrist guards can help prevent them.” Karl Michalko, Hand Surgery Associates, hand surgeon at Unity Hospital. • “Hand surgery is a specialty started shortly after WWII after all these soldiers were injured. We take care of patients who have soft tissue

problem, vascular injuries, and orthopedic surgeries. It’s not just bones, tendons or ligaments. • “Although we’re surgeons, we take care of all sorts of conditions in the hand such as tendinitis, that may be taken care of without surgery. People often think everything needs surgery. We can treat many things without surgery. • “We treat all ages, from infants who have congenital hand conditions to elderly adults who have traumatic conditions who have broken bones from falls and non-traumatic conditions like carpal tunnel. • “A lot of patients with arthritis fear that if they participate in certain activities, They’ll make things worse. If they hurt, it doesn’t necessarily make it worse. It’s a condition like gray hair. We try to minimize their limitations, help them understand the process. Cracking knuckles or knitting are not related to arthritis. • “Visits go better when [patients] are as well educated as possible. We are doing some clinical research where patients are given certain information sheets about their condition and see if they can ask better questions and make more informed decisions. Many times, patients don’t know what the problem is when they come. Other times, they’re told they have carpal tunnel. If they have some education about their condition before they come, it’s helpful. •”Some websites are accurate, like that of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand, (www.handcare. org). If patients are living here in the summer and in the winter for the summer, that site can help them find a hand surgeon in other places. We also give educational brochures which can be helpful for conditions they were not aware of.”

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Clifton Springs

Hospital & Clinic


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of Hearing

Warren Hammert, orthopedic hand surgeon at University of Rochester Medical Center.

Deborah Jeanne Sergeant is a writer with In Good Health. “What Your Doctor Wants You to Know” is an ongoing column that appears monthly to give our area’s healthcare professionals an opportunity to share how patients can improve their care by helping their providers and by helping themselves. June 2013 •

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Lessons Learned From Patients Dr. Paul Griner writes a book recounting most memorable lessons he learned from patients he treated over the course of 60 years By Jay Scott


fter practicing medicine for 60 years, physician Paul Griner made a discovery about the special moments he experienced with patients throughout his long and distinguished career. It was not the accolades he received, the positions he held or the countless lives he benefited or saved over the years that struck him as an important thread of his life, it was the lessons and wisdom he took from his patients. And to Griner, 80, those lessons were so important he decided to capture the experiences in a book to pass on to medical students and their future patients. “I was reminded three or four years ago of a patient whose story resulted in an extraordinary learning experience for me and as I preceded to put that story down on paper, I began to think of these stories, of so many other patients that gave me an education,” he said. “Before too long I ended up with about 50 of those stories, and they had to do with ethics, professionalism and the importance of good bedside skills.” The name of the book is “The Power of Patient Stories: Learning

Page 18

Griner signing copies of his new book The Power of Patient Stories: Learning Moments in Medicine for students and colleagues at the University of Rochester School of Medicine following recent reading and discussion. Moments in Medicine.” And in a time when more and more of everyday health care is becoming about new advances in medicine, technology and possibly more distance between doctor and patient, the book concentrates on the importance of the human relationships and communication. To each of the 50 personal stories in the book, there is a lesson to be found. What do you do when a patient asks to keep her leukemia diagnosis from her grown daughter? What do you do as a doctor when a patient begs you to let him die in peace? Not easy questions to face or answer, but Griner said those are the kinds of ethical dilemmas doctors and other medical professionals face many times through their careers. In his book, he not only serves up the discussion, but also shares how he dealt with each situation. “I thought I would put the book together as a work-

book for medical students to help them take what might be abstract concepts and put them in an operational setting so they can understand what the concepts are all about,” said Griner. “It is to help them realize that all in medicine is not all black and white.” Physician Donald R. Bordley, associate chair of education at the University of Rochester Medical School, was one of Griner’s resident students at the university in 1976. “My thinking is that we will probably use this book in our residents program,” said Bordley, who now supervises and instructs residents at the medical school. “He was my mentor and he has been one the most influential people in my career.” It was the influence of a country doctor that set Griner’s career and life in motion. He grew up in a rural area near the Adirondack Mountains where he was allowed to make the house calls and rounds with the local doctor. “I was able to spend a lot of time making the rounds with the doctor and gained many experiences during that time,” Griner said. “I knew from then on that I wanted to be a doctor.” The decision turned out to be a good choice for the country boy from Upstate New York. Griner is a professor of medicine emeritus at the University of Rochester and was Strong Memorial Hospital’s general director and chief executive officer from 1984 to 1995.

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

He also served as a consultant for Massachusetts General Hospital from 2005 to 2011 and a senior lecturer at Harvard Medical School. He is currently a consultant with Western Connecticut Health Network. Griner has homes in both Rochester and Connecticut. A doctor who sees thousands of people — many at their worst when they are scared, sick and many times on their back in a hospital gown — experiences a great deal of life every day. In Griner’s book is also an account of the change and progression in the medical field. He practiced in a time before CT scans, ultrasound, arthroscopic surgery and the mass proliferation of drugs and vaccines available on the market today. But Griner said that doctor-to-patient communication is still a basic critical skill in medical care. In one of the stories included in his book he remembers when he was an intern he saw a patient who was having shivers and chills from a familial Mediterranean fever, a hereditary disorder. It was a good early lesson on the value of really looking at a patient with purpose and not just a glance. “When I saw the patient I was intent on determining if he had true rigor or just chilliness and I asked him if his teeth chattered,” Griner read from his book. “He looked at me, developed a silly grin and said ‘well let’s look in the drawer and find out.’ He opened the drawer and took out his false teeth.”

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How to Use Herbal Supplements Safely Dear Savvy Senior Are herbal supplements safe for seniors who are taking other prescription medications? I have a friend who swears by them, but I want to be sure before I take anything new. Cautious Carol Dear Carol,

Herbal supplements have become increasingly popular in recent years as millions of Americans are looking for natural and more affordable ways to improve their health. But it’s important to know that many herbs can also cause side effects and can interact with prescription medications, especially if you have hypertension, diabetes, kidney disease or liver problems. While the Food and Drug Administration does regulate herbal supplements, they don’t get the same scientific scrutiny that medications do. Herbal supplement manufacturers do not have to get FDA approval, and they don’t have to prove a product’s safety and effectiveness before it’s marketed. So, before you start taking any new supplement, no matter how natural or harmless it may seem, you need to talk to your doctor or pharmacist to make sure it’s safe for you. In the meantime, here are a few popular herbs you should know about that can cause problems when taken with certain medications. Aloe Vera: Used on your skin, aloe vera is perfectly safe. But taken orally as a laxative, it may interact with blood sugar-lowering medicines used to treat diabetes. Ginger: A gram or so of powdered ginger can help ease nausea, but it can also interfere with anticoagulant (blood thinning) medications like warfarin and even aspirin. And, if taken in large quantities could interfere with cardiac, diabetes and blood pressure meds. Garlic: Marketed as a pill, capsule or powder to lower blood pressure and cholesterol, garlic acts as a blood thinner. So, if you’re taking an anticoagulant, use with caution because garlic can make your blood too thin increasing the risk of excessive bleeding. Ginkgo: Taken to help boost memory and prevent dementia, as well as treat a variety of other ailments, this popular supplement can also raise your

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risk of bleeding when combined with blood thinning medications. It can also counteract the blood pressure lowering effect of thiazide diuretic drugs and can interfere with anti-seizure medications and insulin used to treat diabetes. Ginseng: Taken primarily to improve overall health and boost the immune system, this herb can reduce concentrations of the anticoagulant drug warfarin and can interact with some antidepressant medications too. People with diabetes should also use extra caution with ginseng if they are taking medicine to lower blood sugar. Kava: Promoted as a treatment to curb anxiety and stress, kava has been reported to cause liver damage, including hepatitis and liver failure. It can also interfere with antipsychotic and Parkinson’s medications, can thin the blood and should not be taken with anticoagulants, and can cause drowsiness so it should not be taken in combination with any sedatives. Licorice Root: Taken for ulcers, bronchitis and sore throat, licorice root can cause high blood pressure and salt and water retention, raising the risk of heart problems. It can also thin the blood and should not be used with blood thinning drugs. St. John’s wort: Marketed as an aid to treat depression, Saint John’s wort can reduce the effectiveness of a number of prescription medications, including anticoagulants, antidepressants, seizure-control drugs and certain cancer drugs. Zinc: Taken as a defense against colds, excess zinc can cause nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, stomach cramps, diarrhea and headaches. It can also interact with a variety of prescription drugs, including antibiotics and hypertension meds. To get more information on the safety, side effects and effectiveness of these and many other herbal remedies, visit the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center site on herbs, botanicals and supplements at mskcc-herbs. org, and see the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine “Herbs at a Glance” Web page at htm.

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit www.savvysenior. org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book. June 2013 •

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The Social Ask Security Office Column provided by the local Social Security Office

The Right Kind of Fishing

(And How Not To Be The Catch Of The Day)


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his Father’s Day, you may be inclined to spend some quality time with Dad, maybe take him out camping or fishing. But try to make sure that nobody else tries to “phish” with you or your father. These days, all people (including fathers and sons) need to be cautious of scams — Internet, mail, and even phone scams — which can damage your credit score and wallet. Scam artists have become shrewd. Any time someone asks for your personal information, you should be wary. Particularly cruel are swindlers who target Social Security beneficiaries. As a rule of thumb, Social Security will not call or email you for your personal information such as your Social Security number or banking information. If someone contacts you and asks for this kind of information and claims to be from Social Security, do not give out your personal information without first contacting Social Security to verify the validity of the person contacting you. It could be an identity thief on the other end phishing for your personal information. Just call the local Social Security office, or Social Security’s toll-free number at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778). If you receive a suspicious call, please report it to the fraud hotline. Reports may be made online at www. public_fraud_reporting/form.htm or by telephone at 1-800-269-0271 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. Please include the following details: • The alleged suspect(s) and victim(s) names, addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth, and Social Security numbers; • Description of the fraud and the location where the fraud took place; • When and how the fraud was committed; • Why the person committed the fraud (if known); and • Who else has knowledge of the potential violation. Identity theft is one of the fastest-growing crimes in America. If you,

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Q: How do I change my citizenship status on Social Security’s records? A: To change your citizenship status shown in Social Security records: • Complete an application for a Social Security card (Form SS-5), which you can find online at; and • Provide documents proving your: • New or revised citizenship status (We can only accept certain documents as proof of citizenship. These include your U.S. passport, a Certificate of

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

your father, or anyone you know has been the victim of an identity thief, the place to contact is the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at www.idtheft. gov. Or call 1-877-IDTHEFT (1-877-4384338); TTY 1-866-653-4261. Some people who receive Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits are victimized by misleading advertisers. Such companies offer Social Security services for a fee, even though the same services are available directly from Social Security free of charge. Especially upsetting are such ads that make it appear as though the ad has come directly from Social Security. By law, such advertisements must indicate that the company is not affiliated with Social Security. If you or your dad see what you believe is misleading advertising for Social Security services from a company that does not admit it is not affiliated with Social Security, send the complete mailing, including the envelope, to: Office of the Inspector General, Fraud Hotline, Social Security Administration, P.O. Box 17768, Baltimore, MD 21235. Also, advise your state’s attorney general or consumer affairs office and the Better Business Bureau. You can visit the Office of the Inspector General online at oig.ssa. gov and select the “Fraud, Waste, or Abuse” link. Learn more about identity theft at pubs/10064.html. Read about misleading advertising at www.socialsecurity. gov/pubs/10005.html. And finally, while you’re enjoying the right kind of fishing with Dad this Father’s day, you may want to tell him about Extra Help with Medicare prescription drug costs. If your father is covered by Medicare and has limited income and resources, he may be eligible for Extra Help — available through Social Security — to pay part of his monthly premiums, annual deductibles, and prescription co-payments. We estimate that the Extra Help is worth about $4,000 per year. That kind of savings buys a lot of bait and tackle. Learn more at

Naturalization, or a Certificate of Citizenship. If you are not a U.S. citizen, Social Security will ask to see your current immigration documents); • Age; and • Identity. • Next, Take (or mail) your completed application and documents to your local Social Security office. All documents must be either originals or copies certified by the issuing agency. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies of documents.

H ealth News Artemis Health doctor inducted as fellow of ACP Board-certified internist Valerie Newman was recently elected as a fellow of the American College of Physicians (ACP) for achievements in internal medicine, the specialty of adult medical care. Newman is part of the team of women physicians providing health care for women at Artemis Health, a Lifetime Health Medical Group practice. She was recognized in an awards ceremony during ACP’s annual scientific meeting, which took place in San Francisco in April. Fellows are elected upon the recommendation of their peers and the review of ACP’s credentials subcommittee. They often use “FACP,” for “Fellow of the American College of Physicians” after their names in recognition of this honor. According to the American College of Physicians, “Being an FACP is a mark of esteem from colleagues who recognize accomplishments and achievements over and above the practice of medicine.” “I’ve had the pleasure to work with Dr. Newman since 1999. Her recent election as a fellow of the American College of Physicians is well-deserved,” says Robert Cole, family medicine physician and medical director with Lifetime Health Medical Group. “Dr. Newman exemplifies the best of academic rigor combined with genuine caring for her patients. She has been and continues to be a regional leader in delivery of medical care and medical education. My colleagues and I applaud her continuing efforts.” Newman earned her bachelor’s

degree in biology from Swarthmore, where she was also inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. She earned her medical degree from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and completed her residency at Strong Memorial Hospital, in Rochester. She has previously served as a senior instructor in medicine and an assistant professor of medicine in the general medicine unit at the University of Rochester. She has been practicing at Artemis Health since 1999.

Thompson Hospital gets award for stroke care Thompson Hospital has received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes Thompson’s commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of stroke care by ensuring that stroke patients receive treatment according to nationally accepted standards and recommendations. To receive the Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award, Thompson achieved at least 12 consecutive months of 85 percent or higher adherence to all Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Quality Achievement indicators and achieved at least 75 percent or higher compliance with six of 10 Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Quality Measures during that same period of time, which are reporting initiatives to measure quality of care. These measures include aggressive

New Emergency Department at NewarkWayne Community Hospital Opens

The Daniel Alexander, M.D. Emergency Department opened to patients at 6:30 a.m. April 24. Named in honor of the Dr. Daniel Alexander Family Foundation, the new emergency department is the first major expansion to the hospital in nearly 20 years. The new ED is the centerpiece of a $13.1 million major modernization project at NWCH. The project is a direct response to a critical community need. Designed and built in 1971, the hospital’s previous ED, designed for 11,000 patient visits per year, actually provided care for more than 23,000 patient visits in 2012.

use of medications, such as antithrombotics, anticoagulation therapy, DVT prophylaxis, cholesterol reducing drugs and smoking cessation, all aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients. In addition to the Get With The Guideline-Stroke award, Thompson has also been recognized as a recipient of the association’s Target: Stroke Honor Roll, for improving stroke care. Over the past quarter, at least 50 percent of the hospital’s eligible ischemic stroke patients have received tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA, within 60 minutes of arriving at the hospital (known as ‘door-to-needle’ time). “With a stroke, time lost is brain lost, and the Get With The GuidelinesStroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award demonstrates that our staff is committed to providing care that has been shown in the scientific literature to quickly and efficiently treat stroke patients with evidence-based protocols,” said Thompson Health senior vice president of medical services, physician Carlos R. Ortiz.

Untity’s Robert Israel receives recognition award Unity Health System announced that physician Robert H. Israel, medical director of the Unity Sleep Disorders Center, is the recipient of Unity’s 2013 Physician Recognition Award. Given by Unity Hospital medical staff, the annual award honors a physician who demonstrates commitment to the goals and values of Unity Health System, active participation in the community and the hospital through service and excellence in patient care. Israel, who was nominated by his colleagues Israel at Unity, was chosen by a selection committee made up of administrators, clinical leaders, employee representatives and medical staff. “For many decades, Dr. Israel has devoted himself to providing exceptional patient care,” said Joseph Salipante, chief quality officer at Unity Health System. “He always makes the time to interact with others when he is needed by colleagues or patients. He has always treated everyone with compassion and respect, while being a patient listener. There is no finer or more worth recipient of this award.” Israel, a Brighton resident, started working in the pulmonary department at St. Mary’s Hospital in 1974. He has held several leadership positions. He is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine, the American Board of Sleep Medicine, and holds a certificate in Pulmonary Disease.

Gary Mervis receives Ellis Island Medal of Honor Gary Mervis, chairman and founder of Camp Good Days and Special

June 2013 •

Times, has been selected as one of the recipients of the prestigious Ellis Island Medals of Honor for 2013. Sponsored by the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations (NECO), the Ellis Island Medals of Honor are presented annually to American citizens who Mervis have distinguished themselves within their own ethnic groups while exemplifying the values of the American way of life. Past medalists include six U.S. presidents, one foreign president, Nobel Prize winners and leaders of industry, education, the arts, sports and government, as well as everyday Americans who have made freedom, liberty and compassion a part of their life’s work. Mervis was presented with the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, along with the other 2013 recipients, at a gala dinner this May 11 held in the restored Great Hall on Ellis Island. New York State Lieutenant Gov. Robert Duffy, an 2012 recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, nominated Mervis, noting in his nomination that Mervis “epitomizes the adage that one person can make a difference in the lives of others and in our world.”

Ward named director of Ferris Hills/Clark Meadows Aimee Ward of Canandaigua was recently named the director of sales and marketing for Thompson Health’s independent living community of Ferris Hills at West Lake and the adjacent enriched living community of Clark Meadows. Located on 57 acres off West Lake Road in Canandaigua, Ferris Hills has 84 one- and two-bedroom apartment homes. Clark Meadows has 48 apartments and is for seniors who need some assistance with daily tasks. In addition to having co-owned a successful downtown business from 2003 Ward through 2013, Ward is executive director of the Canandaigua Lake Music Festival, marketing committee chairwoman of the Finger Lakes Plein Air Competition and Festival and former president of the Canandaigua Downtown Merchants Association. She was a 2012 finalist for the Canandaigua Chamber of Commerce’s ATHENA Award. A native of Canastota in Madison County, Ward holds a bachelor’s degree in social sciences from SUNY Geneseo. In addition to her entrepreneurial background, she has extensive experience in sales. “We are thrilled to welcome Aimee to our senior communities,” said Thompson Health Senior Vice President of Senior Living Services Dona Rickard. “Her background and her extensive involvement throughout the

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper

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H ealth News greater Canandaigua area make her the perfect fit for the role of director of sales and marketing.”

President and CEO.

Lifetime Health welcomes Park Ridge at home director internist to Irondequoit receives award Physician Zhong Guo has joined Debra Lyda, director of Park Ridge at Home, Unity’s long-term home health care program, has been awarded the Employee of Distinction award by LeadingAge New York. She lives in Fairport. Nominated by Barb Gray, vice president of home and community based services at Unity, Lyda has been described as a visionary leader who initiates creative ideas to sustain quality of care, patient satisfaction and excelLyda lence in delivery of health care. Founded in 1961, LeadingAge New York, formerly the New York Association of Homes & Services for the Aging, represents nonprofit, mission-driven and public continuing care providers, including nursing homes, senior housing, adult care facilities, continuing care retirement communities, assisted living and community service providers. LeadingAge New York’s members employ 150,000 professionals serving more than 500,000 New Yorkers annually.

Lifetime Health Medical Group’s primary care practice in Irondequoit, currently located within the Wilson Health Center at 800 Carter St. An internal medicine physician, Guo has been working at urgent care by Lifetime Health since January. He received his medical degree from Shandong Medical University in Jinan, China, and completed his internal medicine residency at Rochester General HosGuo pital. He has worked as a clinical study coordinator in the department of investigational cancer therapeutics at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, and as a research assistant at the Center for Cell and Gene Therapy at Baylor College of Medicine, also in Houston. Guo has dual Master of Science degrees in cellular and molecular biology and computer science, both from Kent State University in Ohio. He has coauthored several medical studies that have been published in various medical journals, including Clinical Cancer Research.

Bethany Rague promoted at UofR associated dean for Visiting Nurse Service diversity selected as fellow Bethany Rague of Geneseo has been promoted to associate director, service coordination at Visiting Nurse Service of Rochester and Monroe County (VNS). Rague most recently served as home care coordinator manager and has been with VNS since 1986. In her new role, Rague will be responsible for the patient service coordination department and will continue to lead the home care coordination and intake teams. Consolidating these roles Rague will improve VNS’s ability to coordinate care from referral to service delivery. VNS originally hired Rague approximately 27 years ago as a registered nurse. She served as a home care coordinator from 2001 until 2008 when she was promoted to senior home care coordinator. Later that year, she was named manager. According to VNS, her promotion to associate director is in recognition of her reputation for strong management skills and her ability to work well with staff from many different departments. “In her more than 20 years here, Bethany has demonstrated outstanding managerial skills and dedication to VNS patients,” said Vicky Hines, VNS Page 22

Physician Linda H. Chaudron, professor of psychiatry and senior associate dean for diversity at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, has been chosen for the 2013 Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine program (ELAM). In becoming an ELAM fellow, Chaudron joins a venerable list of women administrators in academic medical centers across the nation, including the University of Rochester Medical Center. “We are committed to advancing women into senior leadership and, year after year, we put forth strong nominees for ELAM,” says Mark B. Taubman, dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry. “As our eighth fellow and senior associate dean for diversity, Linda Chaudron will add even greater depth to the decisions we make during these challenging times.” ELAM is the only program in North America dedicated to preparing women for senior leadership roles in academic health science institutions. Fellows receive training in strategic finance and resource management, personal and professional leadership, organizational dynamics, and community building. The curriculum centers around the development of an institutional action project designed to address a strategic institutional priority.

“The fellows’ projects not only help them understand the challenges facing academic health centers and the skills a leader must possess to address these challenges, but also often result in concrete, positive changes at their institutions,” says Diane Magrane, director of ELAM. “We’re doing a lot of strategic planning around diversity, so this training will help move that process to an even higher level,” says Chaudron, who begins her fellowship in May.

Eastman Institute for Oral Health has new director Eli Eliav has been named director of the Eastman Institute for Oral Health at the University of Rochester Medical Center and vice dean for oral health within the school of medicine and dentistry. A widely published expert in oral medicine and orofacial pain, Eliav has been serving as the chairman of the department of diagnostic sciences, director of the Center for Temporomandibular Disorders and Orofacial Pain, and Eliav is the Carmel Endowed chairman in algesiology at the New Jersey Dental School, part of University of Medicine and Dentistry at New Jersey. “Dr. Eliav’s demonstrated leadership abilities, combined with his extensive academic, clinical and research experience make him a perfect fit to lead the entire oral health enterprise within the medical center,” said Bradford C. Berk, chief executive officer of the University of Rochester Medical Center. Among many career highlights, Eliav has a longstanding history for gaining support from National Institutes of Health, as well as funding for industry research and service grants. He has served on the editorial and scientific boards for several major journals, presently serving as editor-inchief of “Quintessence International,” which provides vital information and special reports on clinical and research advances related to all dentistry disciplines. “When I was a resident in Jerusalem in the early ‘90’s, I heard great things about Eastman and its excellence in postgraduate education, research and clinical care,” said Eliav. “I would have never believed it if someone told me then that one day I would be director of this fine institution. I’m excited about what the future holds for Eastman Institute and the Medical Center.” Eliav earned his dental and post graduate degrees and completed his residency training in oral medicine at Hebrew University in his native Israel. He then completed a research fellowship at the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research related to pain and neurosensory mechanisms. He joined the New Jersey Dental School as an associate professor in 2004.

IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

Researchers Sound Alarm on the Role Fatigue Plays in Crashes


et more sleep. Have another cup of coffee before you drive to school or work. It could save your life. A 100-car naturalistic driving study conducted by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute has shown that fatigue is a cause of 20 percent of crashes, rather than the 2 or 3 percent previously estimated based on surveys, simulator studies, and test tracks. And 18- to 20-year-olds account for significantly more fatigue-related crashes than any other age group. Adolescents’ sleep patterns shift to later hours; however, the school day still tends to start early, resulting in daytime sleepiness. Older drivers can face similar issues with late nights and early work times, but have more experience coping with moderate fatigue — although, not always. “One of the most important results from the 100-car naturalistic driving study was the degree to which fatigue is a cause of accidents,” said Charlie Klauer, group leader for teen risk and injury prevention at the transportation institute’s Center for Vulnerable Road User Safety. “A finding that surprised people is the prevalence of fatigue during the day. We found significantly more crashes/near crashes due to fatigue during the day than at night,” she said. “The study allowed us, for the first time, to observe driver behavior just prior to a crash. In 20 percent of all crashes and 16 percent of all near crashes, the driver was showing fatigue. We saw eyelid closure, head bobbing, severe loss of facial musculature, microsleep — which is when your eyes drift shut and then pop up,” said Klauer. “This was not just yawning. The drivers were asleep.” One-hundred drivers who commuted into or out of the Northern Virginia/Washington, D.C., metropolitan area were initially recruited as primary drivers to have their vehicles instrumented or receive a leased vehicle instrumented for the study. Since other family members and friends would occasionally drive the instrumented vehicles, data were collected on 132 additional drivers. Researchers selected a larger sample of drivers below the age of 25, compared with the total population of drivers, and a sample that drove more than the average number of miles.

Nerve Blocks Offer Another Anesthesia Option By Deborah Jeanne Sergeant


wo decades ago, few people could imagine having surgery without general anesthesia. But within the past five to 10 years, nerve blocks serving as pain management during and after surgery have become a popular option. Instead of “going to sleep” with general anesthesia, patients can remain comfortable and aware during and after surgery without all the side effects common to general anesthesia. Warren Hammert, an orthopedic hand surgeon with University of Rochester Medical Center, said that many of his patients opt for a nerve block and with good reasons. “They don’t have to worry about being nauseated,” he said of one of the common side effect of general anesthesia. “They need fewer pre-op tests. It’s like being numbed at the dentist.” Local anesthetic blocks for hand surgery requires about 15 minutes for preparation, instead of the normal four to five hours in pre-op and post-op care with general anesthesia. Many patients recover from the anesthesia just an hour after surgery with nerve blocks.

For some types of surgery, it’s required to the surgeon to receive mid-surgery feedback from patients, so nerve blocks can help deliver a better outcome for these cases. Patients with risk factors associated with bad reaction with general anesthesia usually respond well to local anesthesia. Anesthesiologist Sonia Pyne, director of anesthesiology at the University of Rochester Medical Center, said that nerve blocks may be combined with sedation or general anesthesia, but that overall, less medication is required, even though two kinds of anesthesia are used. Some patients choose combining sedation or general anesthesia because they do not want to have awareness of the surgery, but they want the post-surgery numbness that nerve blocks offer. “It can offer superior pain control after surgery and let doctors treat pain with a nerve block instead of narcotic pain medication, which can have nausea, grogginess and other side effects,” Pyne said. Narcotic pain medication can also lead to dependence, unlike nerve blocks.

The two branches of regional anesthesia are ones that target the central nervous system, such as a spinal or epidural, which allows larger areas of the body to be numbed, and peripheral nerve blocks, such as what hand or foot surgeons often use. Deciding what type of anesthesia is used depends upon many factors, such as the kind of surgery, the patient’s medical background, the patient’s level of pain tolerance and his preference. A recent innovation is using ultrasound to guide the placement of regional anesthesia, instead of relying upon nerve anatomy alone. “We can watch in real time where the nerves are,” Pyne said. “It’s made the procedure quicker. It’s also less painful for the patient and more accurate in getting a block. We have up-

wards of 20 to 30 nerve blocks on any given day.” A few types of medications can contraindicate nerve blocks. Rare allergies to local anesthetics can also rule them out; however, most people tolerate nerve blocks well. Nerve blocks are also used for managing pain unrelated to surgery, such as childbirth (epidural), cancer, arthritis, low back pain, migraines and chronic pain problems.

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IN GOOD HEALTH – Rochester / Genesee Valley Healthcare Newspaper • June 2013

In Good Health  

The Healthcare Newspaper for Rochester and the Genesee Valley

In Good Health  

The Healthcare Newspaper for Rochester and the Genesee Valley