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APRIL 6, 2012

THE SKINNY ON THE JOSEPH M. STILL BURN CENTER WHERE DO MOST PATIENTS COME FROM? Most come from Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, Florida, North Carolina, Mississippi, and Alabama.

Nurse

by Daniel Pearson

is an RN in Doctors Hospital’s Joseph M. Still Burn Unit. That means she spends every day treating patients who are suffering through what is probably the most painful of all reasons to wind up in a hospital. As tough as it is for patients, it’s no walk in the park for the nurses and other burn center staff, either. “You either love it or hate it,” says Gray. Having been in the burn unit for four years, she obviously loves it. Why? For anyone who goes into

nursing to help people, this is the place to be. “You really get to know your patients and their families,” she says. “A lot our patients are here for months. You really get emotionally attached to patients and their families.” But not always, at least when it comes to families. “Some patients don’t get visitors. That makes it difficult” — for patients and staff alike. It isn’t that some people don’t care that a family member is languishing in a hospital bed for months on end. It’s more like

reality intrudes. “We get patients from all over,” Gray says. “They may be from Mississippi or Alabama or beyond. They want to stay, but at some point they have to get back to their lives.” Burn nurses become the new family for patients in their care. With limited visiting hours as part of infection control, even a family hovering just beyond the unit’s doors can spend only so much time with their loved one. (The exception being pediatric burn patients; their parents can Please see BURN NURSE page 2

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WHAT PATIENT CAME THE FARTHEST? A patient from South America was treated at JMS, but JMS personnel have consulted on burn cases throughout the world, including combat burn injuries. WHAT TYPES OF BURNS AND INJURIES ARE TREATED? Thermal (heat) burns represent 85% of JMS patients; electrical burns: 10%; chemical burns: 5%. WHAT TYPES OF BURNS AND INJURIES ARE TREATED? Thermal (heat) burns represent 85% of JMS patients; electrical burns: 10%; chemical burns: 5%. HOW MANY PATIENTS ARE SEEN EACH YEAR AT JMS? Advanced Wound and Burn Clinic visits per year: 22,000. Admissions per year: 2,300. JMS is the largest burn center in the United States.

ake a look at Ronda Gray. That’s her above. She looks nice enough, doesn’t she? Attractive. Friendly. Pleasant. Outgoing. But trust me when I tell you this: Ronda Gray is not someone you ever want to meet — at least not in her professional capacity. Don’t get me wrong; she’s a perfectly nice person. She’s probably great to hang out with — unless you’re her patient. As you already figured out from the headline above, Ronda

HOW MANY PATIENTS ARE CHILDREN? One-third of JMS patients are pediatric patients. +

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APRIL 6, 2012

AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

BURN NURSE… from page 1

Gray wraps new bandages on the leg of a patient who was seriously burned in a house fire that claimed the life of her husband. stay in the room 24/7.) Another major factor that unites burn nurses and their patients is the daily regimen of care. It’s no accident that nursing shifts are 12 hours long. There is a lot of work to be done in the business of helping burn victims heal. “You don’t sit down a lot,” says Gray. Although one might think of burn injuries as being tough to look at, some patients look perfectly healthy: burns can be inhalation injuries that affect the lungs more than anything external. Individual burn unit rooms can be fully functional operating rooms, so when the need arises doctors on the team can perform various procedures on the spot: skin grafting, debridement, and more. Even without anything surgical going on there are major chores to be done for most patients several times a day.

Bathing and bedding changes are at minimum a daily event. Some procedures are done each shift, meaning twice per day. Daily dressing changes can consume lots of time. I watched Ronda go through her paces with one patient whose burns were extensive: her entire right arm and leg and to a lesser extent her left arm and leg were severely burned, as were her hands, face and shoulders. The culprit: a house fire that she survived; others in her family weren’t so fortunate. Bedding and dressing changes are the least of the duties performed by burn nurses. Hands are a frequent location of burn injuries. Those exquisite tools we use all day every day are bandaged and out of commission. As a result, says Gray, “we have to feed patients. We brush their teeth. We comb their hair. We shave them. We

wipe their backsides.” Yes, the relationship between burn patient and burn nurse is without a doubt the closest in all of medicine. Nurses are obviously a key component in burn treatment, but the overall program is all-encompassing. Depending on the individual case, Gray says treatment often includes numerous surgeries, skin grafts, extensive pharmaceutical intervention, occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech therapy, psychological care and counseling, respiratory therapy, sessions inside hyperbaric chambers to enhance oxygenation of tissues to speed healing, whirlpool treatments, even learning how to walk again. Some might wonder who is more fortunate: those who perish in fires or those who survive. Recovering from a burn can be a marathon of agony, although people like Ronda Gray are in place to minimize the pain to the extent possible. “Pain is one of the worst aspects, but there are drugs we use to make everything we do as pain-free as possible.” Unfortunately, drugs enter the burn unit picture in other ways. There is nearly always at least one patient burned in a meth lab explosion, says Gray. They can

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BUCKET LIST STUFF YOU DEFINITELY DON’T WANT TO DO BEFORE YOU DIE: #1. Be burned.

be among the more challenging cases. Because their activity is illegal, victims are not exactly eager to immediately call 9-1-1. They may wait a day or two before seeking any medical attention, often in some hospital down the road. Another drug-related challenge for the treatment team comes from drug addicts. Courtesy of their drug use and the tolerances they have built up over time, the pain medicines usually used in the

Medical Examiner publisher Dan Pearson checks out the cramped quarters inside a hyperbaric chamber. Patients may spend up to 90 minutes at a time inside the chambers. (Photos by H+D Photography)

burn unit are ineffective at normal dosages. Something else burn unit nurses wouldn’t mind never seeing again: babies and young children brought in with scalding water injuries inflicted by parents or guardians as punishment for trivial and completely age-appropriate offenses. Those aren’t easy cases to treat, but people like Ronda Gray are up to the task. “I want the sickest patient. I want that challenge. When those patients come in,” says Gray, “for me it’s game on. I am going to do everything within my power to make sure they get better.” It takes a special attitude like that to be a burn nurse. “You have to keep the mindset that you’re working toward a goal, to get them where they need to be.” Sometimes that destination is miles down the road, but with dedicated burn nurses on the job, no patient has to make that long and painful journey alone. +

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If I can do it... his month is my 1 year running anniversary, thanks to Tami, my BFF, side kick and the best running partner a girl could have. The start of my running story was not a happy one. On March 6, 2011, my mom called to tell me that my uncle passed away the night before from a heart attack. After his funeral, I decided I needed to make some changes because we never know what our future holds. I knew one thing; I definitely was not stacking the deck in my favor. Over the years, I put other people and work before myself. That left me stressed and WAY overweight. I was the heaviest I had ever been in my entire life. One day soon after I was talking to Tami and telling her how I needed to change my ways, get back into exercising and start eating better. (It was really embarrassing to be a fat vegetarian. Talk about an oxymoron.) So, Tami tells me that we

“I will never forget that day.” should train for a 5K. My first thoughts were: “Yeah right, me RUN — and how far is a 5K anyway?” But I thought about it and figured I may as well give it a try. I told my mom about our plans. She laughed and told me that I couldn’t do it. I think her exact words were: “you will pass out and someone will have to drag you across the finish line.” I am so glad she reacted that way because it added fuel to the fire that I needed. Anyone who knows me knows that was all I needed to be motivated to do it. I really think she made a point to laugh at me and tell me that I couldn’t do it because she knew that I would have to prove her wrong. We decided that our first 5K would be the Cove Lake 5K last

June. Our goal was to train for this 5K so that we could run the entire thing without stopping. We officially started our training on April 10, 2011. I will never forget that day. Wow!! I knew I was out of shape, but I felt like an old geezer out there trying to run while desperately gasping for air. I couldn’t even run for a minute. Honestly, I don’t think I even lasted 30 seconds. It was so discouraging, but at the same time I was determined to do this. I just remembered thinking: “I can’t even run anywhere near a mile without stopping. How am I going to run 3.1 miles in June?” Well, I kept on, and the day finally came when we were able to run a mile without stopping. You would have thought we had just completed a marathon. I still think back to that day, and it makes me smile because I am so proud of that first mile. We continued to train and improved to 2 miles, 3 miles and then finally 3-1/2 miles. Two weeks before for the 5K, Please see FIRST PERSON page 9

Why subscribe to the Medical Examiner? Why would anyone pay for a subscription to a free newspaper? That’s certainly a legitimate question. The answer: as a major regional medical center, patients come to Augusta hospitals and physicians from all over the Southeast. The MCGHealth Medical Center alone sees patients from every single county in Georgia, not to mention South Carolina, Florida, and beyond. Add to that the regional reach of Eisenhower Army Medical Center and both Veterans Administration hospitals, the Joseph M. Still Burn Center at Doctors Hospital, MCGHealth Children’s Medical Center, Walton Rehab and University Hospital, and it’s clear that many people seeking treatment in Augusta are not local residents. Furthermore, some of our most loyal readers are in town only occasionally. Or their treatments and visits to Augusta are only temporary. Even local residents may find it more convenient to walk to their mailbox than visit one of our many newsstands. Subscriber copies are mailed the day prior to the issue date so they will be received by most readers no later than the publication date printed on the paper. Copies are sent by First Class mail in a sealed envelope so they’ll arrive promptly and in crisp condition. Rates are $16 for a 6-month subscription (12 issues), $32 for a full year (24 issues). Complete the form below and drop it in the mail with your payment. Thank you! +

What’s your story? Nearly all of us — even doctors and nurses — are sometimes patients. Perhaps you were recently injured playing your favorite sport, or years ago you somehow got hurt without even leaving your favorite recliner. Maybe you were diagnosed with a dreaded disease, mugged in a dark and lonely parking lot, or you stubbed your toe in the safety of your own bedroom. On the other hand, perhaps you needed medical attention 5,000 miles from home. Whatever your medical experience, we’d like to hear your story for our Medicine in the First Person feature. It can be frightening or funny, ordinary or extraordinary, just a few paragraphs long or quite a lengthy tale. We’ll publish your encounters with the medical profession as often as we receive them. + Send your submissions for Medicine in the First Person to the Augusta Medical Examiner via e-mail: info@AugustaRx.com or to PO Box 397, Augusta, GA 30903-0397. (The Medical Examiner reserves the right to accept, reject, or edit any submission at its sole discretion.)

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AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

Hope IS Possible

It’s time for a fresh new beginning

Helen Blocker-Adams hhh, the sounds of birds chirping in your open window early in the morning. A wonderful sound, isn’t it? It’s the sign of spring. A new season. The biggest golf tournament on the planet. And spring sometimes signals a new attitude. A fresh mental outlook. It’s fascinating to me how everything that surrounds us – politics, the economy, environment, people, culture,

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and education – affects our mental health and our emotional well-being in so many ways. Someone can lose his job, hate his mother, kill his mother, set his house on fire, and after all of that is found to have been depressed prior to doing those things. Certainly that is extreme, but that kind of scenario occurs seemingly more than ever these days. Of course, if a person has severe mental health problems, something as simple as a change of weather may not help much. That’s when the experts need to come and perhaps make a diagnosis and prescribe medication to help them cope. Research suggests weather may not have a major effect on mental health, but the overall weight of evidence says weather can have more than just a little effect on your mood or overall mental health. Pleasant weather is related to higher mood, better

“I thank you god for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees and the blue true dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes.” — e.e. cummings memory and broadened cognitive style during the spring as time spent outdoors increases. Augusta is known for its suffocating humidity in the summertime. I remember living in San Antonio, Texas in the 70s. The temperature got very hot there, but it was a dry heat. That state’s heat was nothing like the humidity here. I can tell you that I’ve gotten a little irritated on some humid days. I’m sure you have too. But in my research, I discovered that scientists have found a significant effect on mood correlated with humidity. Now how about that? One study found high

humidity was a predictor for lack of vigor, elation and affection, while another study found that humidity, temperature and hours of sunshine had the greatest effect on mood. High levels of humidity actually lowered scores on concentration while increasing reports of sleepiness. Okay, so we won’t get too bogged down with negative aspects of weather so that it doesn’t affect our emotional well-being. Here is what we can do. As long as springtime weather continues, open your windows. Let the breeze come through. Listen to the birds

sing. They are God’s creatures and they don’t have a care in the world. But they sure are refreshing and relaxing to listen too. Springtime in Augusta is beautiful. The dogwood trees are in full bloom. You know there is something else in the spring that helps with our attitude: The Masters. We lay out the red carpet for thousands of visitors who come to the Garden City. So here’s to your mental health! Have a wonderful springtime day! + Helen Blocker Adams is President/ CEO of The HBA Group, Intl and Executive Director of the Southeast Enterprise Institute, Inc. Visit her website at www.helenblockeradams. com. If you like politics, visit her blog at www.projectlogicga.com. You can reach her via email at hba@hbagroup-intl.com Helen’s new book, Unlikely Allies: 8 Steps to Bridging Divides that Impact Leadership can be purchased by visiting www.hbagroup-intl.com or www.authorhouse.com

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There are a billion people in China. It’s not easy to be an individual in a crowd of more than a billion people. Think of it. More than a BILLION people. That means even if you’re a one-in-a-million type of guy, there are still a thousand guys exactly like you. — A. Whitney Brown, The Big Picture


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AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

WHAT EVERYBODY OUGHT TO KNOW ABOUT CHANGES MISTAKENLY CALLED IMPROVEMENTS by Bad Billy Laveau We got electricity in our home when I was 6. A year later, my father bought a TV. People in town had TVs with a single antenna atop a tall, 2-inch metal water pipe. Their channel changer was simple. The man of the house went outside and, regardless of the inclement weather, fitted a two-foot monkey wrench on the pipe, braced both feet, and with the full weight of his body turned the entire apparatus until his wife beat on the window to let him know it was pointed toward either Jacksonville or Albany, the only two stations strong enough to reach that far out in the flat woods. With directions from the wife, the man-and-monkeywrench channel changer worked perfectly. But my father could not leave well enough alone. He had to innovate. He mounted two antennas on a single pole, one pointed toward Jacksonville and the other toward Albany. When my mother wanted the channel changed, she simply told me to run over to the TV and turn the knob from 2 to 8 or vice versa. Would modern wonders ever cease? Therefore, by the time I was 7, we rendered obsolete the full-grown-manand-monkey-wrench channel changer. We were decades ahead of technology. Nowadays we have remotes of every size and shape imaginable. And we have more channels than a Hollywood starlet has had pelvic affiliates. You can change channels with

the mere flexion of a single finger. But does that make TV better? Probably not. Oh sure, the picture and sound quality is better, but is the content or the effect on our children better? Are our kids better off learning from Roy Rogers and Superman? Or from Dog the Bounty Hunter and Housewives reality shows? If you have to consider more than 15 seconds to answer that, you have failed the first of only two questions on the Bad Billy Laveau Survey Test for Moral Stupidity. (The second question is unimportant and not counted in your final score.) Our world is like that. When we have something that works perfectly, some fool will figure out a way to “improve” it without careful consideration for the unintended consequences. Take buggy whips and horse-drawn carriages. They worked just fine. But then along came Henry Ford and his assembly line black Model A Ford cars. The buggy whip industry disappeared. So did carriage manufacturers. Granted, cars are faster, cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. But now we are dependent on imported oil. We have a new form of death and mayhem: MVA. For those of you who failed the first question above, that stands for Motor Vehicle Accident. Then came DUI. Both led to several new industries: Emergency Rooms. Court appearances. Delinquent car payments. Repo Joe. Car insurance. Muffler shops.

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t s e B Quick oil change shops. Window tinting shops. Rubber tires. Let’s not forget eventual deafness secondary to mobile mega-decibel radios and CD players with subwoofers so low and powerful they are measured on the Richter scale. All are high dollar penalties we pay for progress. (We won’t go into drive-by shootings, high-speed chases, illegal drug transportation, etc.) Would we be better off if we went back to the era of buggies and monkey wrench channel changers? Certainly we would be more inconvenienced, but we might be the better for it. Just look at the Amish. They seem to be doing OK without many worldly conveniences. Have you ever heard of an Amish drive-by shooting? A multiple buggy pileup due to fog? Fatalities due to a high speed buggy chase? A child chasing a ball getting run over

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by a buggy? Medicine is vulnerable to innovation, too. Used to be, if you smoke cigarettes you eventually got chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and/or lung cancer and spent a year or so smothering to death if a heart attack did not end your misery and get you first. Technology has given us all sorts of new medications, X-rays, blood tests, pulmonary function studies, nuclear scans, etc. So what is our benefit from all this progress? These days if you smoke cigarettes you will eventually get chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and/or lung cancer and spend two or three years smothering to death if a heart attack does not end your misery and get you first. Sound familiar? You get to live with a terminal disease longer. Your family gets to watch you die more slowly. It

costs a lot more. But dead you still are. The only change is the financial cost, the technology, and the emotional cost to your family. Bottom line: if you do stupid things like smoking cigarettes, now as then you will get your just reward. But now it takes longer and costs more. Am I being too morbidly fatalistic here? I think not. Death is a normal part of life. We all do it. The only difference is how we do it and what the trappings are. Death is a perfect, dignified end to a terminal disease: no more pain; no more suffering; no more financial or emotional toll. Modern technology makes death more high tech, but does it change or improve the outcome? You must answer that one for yourself. No one said I had to tell you everything you ought to know. + Bad Billy Laveau is a retired MD with a pointed sense of humor. Bad Billy speaks and entertains at public and private events for audiences not subject to cardiac seizure secondary to overwhelming laughter and glee BadBilly@knology.net or 706306-9397

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AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

Health 101 by Sandy Turner, RN, EdD, Family Nurse Practitioner, and Assistant Dean for Administration in the GHSU College of Nursing WHAT KIND OF PROBLEMS CAN A GALLBLADDER HAVE? here used to be a rule of thumb in medicine when looking at gallbladder problems. The typical patient was 4F – Fair, Fat, Female and 40. That rule is not even close to being true today. We have teens and even preteens who have had gallbladder disease and you certainly don’t have to be overweight to feel those pains. It does seem to be more common in females, though. So let’s look at this problem. The gallbladder sits behind the liver up under the rib cage on the right side of the upper abdomen. It is a little sack that holds the bile that is made in the liver to help digest fats in our diet When fatty foods enter the stomach, the gallbladder is stimulated to contract and push bile out into the duodenum, the upper section of the small intestines, to begin the breakdown of fat into glucose for storage. The more fat we eat, the more bile is produced by the liver to handle that work. The gallbladder, then is a storage place for the bile. Two main problems can occur with the gallbladder. First, it can become irritated

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and inflamed or even infected leading to cholecystitis. Remember “itis” means inflammation and “cyst” denotes sac. Gallbladders can develop stones from the bile salts. That is cholelithiasis, “lith” meaning stone. If the gallbladder itself becomes irritated, inflamed or infected, pain is usually felt in the back and can even shoot up to the left shoulder. Pain may come and go, but if the gallbladder becomes really irritated it will cause nausea and vomiting. The person may develop a fever and be very tender near the liver. On X-ray or ultrasound, the gallbladder will be enlarged. It may or may not have stones. Blood tests may also be needed to check for function and infection. Most people develop gallstones as they age. These are formed from the sediment of the bile or salts that may sit in the bladder. A person can develop several small stones or one or 2 big ones. They may pass on out through the bile duct without a problem. Pain will develop when the bladder contracts around the stones and they

get pushed out. Gallstones can block the tubes running from the gallbladder. This can cause what some call yellow jaundice. Eyes and skin can turn yellow when stones block the bile duct. Jaundice actually means yellow so it is a bit of a double statement. How do you avoid gallbladder pain? The main way is to avoid the foods that stimulate the gallbladder to contract. Year in and year out the #1 day people go to the ER with gallbladder problems is Thanksgiving. Typical Turkey Day fare requires lots of bile for digestion. If you have your gallbladder removed your body will need to readjust so it may take some time for your liver to learn the proper amount of bile to make to digest foods properly. Bile causes the brown color in our stools. Too little bile makes stools chalky white and too much will turn stools green and may cause diarrhea. A temporary blockage will have stools change color for a day or so and then change back to normal. An irritated or infected gallbladder can be treated with rest and antibiotics. But if there is a stone blocking the duct, surgery may be needed to remove the stones or the whole gallbladder. There are several ways of doing the surgery now, but how involved the surgery may be depends on how many stones there are and what other organs may be having problems. + HEALTH 101 – Information to help you make positive changes in your life to improve your health by Sandy Turner, RN, EdD, Family Nurse Practitioner, Director of the Good Samaritan House, A Free Community Health Center Open Mondays 15 pm. 213 N Main St., Dearing, GA 706-556-9080.

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Editor’s note: Exceptional Living appears exclusively in the Medical Examiner each month, addressing issues that all of us can benefit from involving people with special — let’s call them exceptional — needs.

Exceptional Living

Perception isn’t reality by Naomi D. Williams, MPH, CHES, CIC® As I drive into work now I’m a little more cheerful. Is it a conscious decision? Slightly, but I think it has more to do with the new plants and trees that have added a warm and welcoming feel as I drive off Riverwatch Parkway, meandering my way to St. Sebastian and eventually to my job’s parking lot. For those visiting Augusta for the first time and venturing onto the downtown end of Riverwatch, they might think this section has had this look since it was designed. Those who live here know that this is not the case. The city got things together and the landscaping was completed just in time for our visitors and for Augustans to reap the benefits of the new décor. This may not be how everyone thinks of the landscaping, ~ Martina Navratilova but that’s my perception. People also view personal changes in various ways too. I recently changed my hairstyle from a medium-sized afro to a traditionally straight bob. I received several different comments and reviews, but what stuck out to me the most was that many people perceived me to be unprofessional because I didn’t wear my hair in a traditional style. I learned that it didn’t matter that my afro was combed, maintained, clean and neat, but because it was in its natural state people’s perception of me and my abilities were subject to conversations — and not always in a good way. This instance helped me to see how people’s stereotypical views influence their perception of people they don’t know and things that they don’t understand. Another example is a news anchor’s comments regarding a woman with Down syndrome. The anchor said “…the woman suffered from Down syndrome.” As the story unfolded over several days the anchor would sometimes say “…the woman murdered had Down syndrome” and at other times they would just mention her name and say nothing about having Down syndrome. I listened to the story, and the comment of “suffering from” Down syndrome bothered me for days, so much so that it was the catalyst for this article on perception. In my opinion, people suffer when they experience a heart attack, a stroke, a traumatic brain injury, a broken leg, a death in the family, or when someone they care about suffers. We don’t “suffer” from the way we’re born, even if that’s with a missing gene (as with Down syndrome). Do you think someone born blind suffers from blindness when they’ve never had sight? People who are differently-abled adapt to their situation and circumstances. As a caregiver of a differently-abled child, I can say I’ve suffered certain things, but again that suffrage turns into adaptation and a new way of life. So what is my point for bringing this all up? I’m not trying to be politically correct. I want to help people be aware that what you perceive is not always another’s reality, and perception often influences interactions with others. When you see a member of the Armed Forces in uniform, what do you think? What about when you learn that someone is a doctor, a priest or reverend? What tends to be your thought when you see or encounter people who are deaf, blind, in a wheelchair, or of a different race or culture than your own? To those who are differently-abled or just noticeably different, understand that most people tend to fear what they don’t know or don’t understand and gravitate to what’s familiar. In the words of Anne Wilson Schaef, “differences challenge assumptions,” and Bob Riley “For too long, we have focused on our differences – in our politics and backgrounds, in our race and beliefs – rather than cherishing the unity and pride that binds us together.” What do you perceive? +

“Disability is a matter of perception. If you can do just one thing well, you’re needed by someone.”


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AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

Ask a Dietitian The Power of One

Have you ever wondered about the power of one? In the grand scheme of things one seems like a small, insignificant figure with the inability to impact anything at all. One grain of sand, for instance, hardly makes a beach, just as one drop of water certainly doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t make an ocean. Yet, if we stop and think about it for a moment, change is quite often impacted by the singular act of one. One inventor illuminated our world by replacing the candle with the light bulb. One researcher changed the course of infections with his discovery of penicillin. Unfortunately, the power of one can also make a profound negative impact. One peanut can lead to an anaphylactic reaction for those with an allergy. Just one use of an illicit drug can lead to addiction and a downward spiral. It seems

that what is ordinarily thought of as the puny sum of one can actually packs quite a wallop. Imagine then, if we applied the power of one to our health. One singular change of habit could potentially impact the cost of healthcare nationwide. For an overweight individual, the loss of one pound of body weight doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t seem significant. But what if it was repeated every month for a year? A twelve pound weight loss is something to celebrate. If this same person happens to be diabetic, that loss could also mean a reduction in blood sugar and, potentially, a reduction in complications. Just one less complication in the life of a diabetic would spare much suffering and expense nationwide. If 12 pounds doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t sound like much, ask yourself how happy you would be if you gained that same amount. One donut a day can

easily lead to this type of weight gain over time (as could excess calories from any source). That one little donut could mean a rise in blood pressure, a risk of developing diabetes, and possible mobility issues. How about that one convenience pastry you fed your child for breakfast, the one piece of candy you packed in the lunch box, the one soft drink you provided after school, the one energy drink during soccer practice, the one fast food dinner that same evening, and the one cookie just before bed. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a lot of ones! Unfortunately, all those little ones are a very realistic day in the life of our nationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s children. How about one day in the life of our seniors? You may be surprised to learn that many of them live on such limited incomes that they often just eat one meal a day. Sometimes that

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even if a child screams for a soft drink. Athough convenient and sometimes cheaper, fast food in the long run is better replaced by healthier food from home. It only takes a little planning. Keep in mind that manufacturers wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t produce what the public doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t buy. If you are tired of unhealthy food options, use your purchasing power to demand better . Whatever your one step, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m confident that you too will realize the tremendous power of one! +

meal is at a senior community center, maybe the one located in your neighborhood. What if one person were to sponsor one senior through a program such as Golden Harvestâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Brown Box Program? That would mean that one senior would have one more box of food every month, possibly meaning more than just one meal a day for that individual. By now you have the idea that you hold the power to make small but important changes, from your own life to something on a grander scale concerning public policy or manufacturer practices. This means taking a firm stand and maybe sometimes having to endure comments by others, even family members. For instance, water and milk are perfectly acceptable beverages

SOLID

Author Cindy Elia, M.S., R.D., C.D.E. is the Nutrition Specialist for the CSRA Area Agency on Aging, your gateway to aging resources. Got a question? Drop us a line: info@AugustaRx.com.

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P harm acy 41 1

OUR NEWSSTANDS Medical locations: • Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Ctr, 15th St., Main Entrance • Dept. of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Uptown Div., Wrightsboro Rd., main lobby • Doctors Hospital, 3651 Wheeler Rd, ER Lobby Entrance • Doctors Hospital, 3651 Wheeler Rd, Employee Entrance (near the Joseph M. Still Burn Center entrance) • Eisenhower Hospital, Main Entrance, Fort Gordon • George C. Wilson Drive (by medical center Waffle House and mail boxes) • GHSU Hospital, 1120 15th Street, South & West Entrances • GHSU Medical Office Building, Harper Street, Main Entrance • GHSU Medical Office Building, Harper Street, Parking Deck entrance • GHSU Hospital, Emergency Room, Harper Street, Main Entrance • GHSU Children’s Medical Center, Harper Street, Main Lobby • GHSU, Laney-Walker Boulevard transit stop, Augusta • Select Specialty Hospital, Walton Way, Main entrance lobby • Trinity Hospital, Wrightsboro Road, main lobby by elevators • Trinity Hospital Home Health, Daniel Village, main lobby • University Health Federal Credit Union/ University Hospital Human Resources, 1402 Walton Way, Main Lobby • University Hospital, 1350 Walton Way, Emergency Room lobby area • University Hospital, 1350 Walton Way, Outside Brown & Radiology/Day Surgery • University Hospital - Columbia County, 465 N. Belair Road, Main Lobby • University Hospital Prompt Care, 3121 Peach Orchard Road, Augusta

Around town: • Barney’s Pharmacy, 2604 Peach Orchard Rd. • Birth Control Source, 1944 Walton Way • ASU Student Bookstore • Blue Sky Kitchen, 990 Broad Street • Columbia County Library, main branch lobby, Ronald Reagan Drive, Evans • Enterprise Mill (North Tower), 1450 Greene Street, Augusta • Daniel Village Barber Shop, Wrightsboro Road at Ohio Ave. • Hartley’s Uniforms, 1010 Druid Park Ave, Augusta • International Uniforms, 1216 Broad Street, Augusta • Marshall Family Y, Belair Rd, Evans • Mellow Mushroom, 12th and Broad Streets, Augusta • Southside Family Y, Tobacco Road, Augusta • Surrey Center, Surrey Center Pharmacy, Highland Avenue, Augusta • Top-Notch Car Wash, 512 N. Belair Road, Evans • Wild Wing Cafe, 3035 Washington Road, Augusta

Plus... 500+ doctors offices throughout the area for staff and waiting rooms, as well as nurses stations and waiting rooms of area hospitals.

APRIL 6, 2012

AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

EDITOR’S NOTE: Very little if anything about healthcare is inexpensive, and that includes medicine. Tiny pills can command large prices. Over-the-counter medications may be less expensive, but are they also less effective? Find the answers to lots of your drug store questions in this column written by Augusta pharmacists Chris and Lee Davidson exclusively for the Medical Examiner.

PHARMACY ERRORS Every year the pharmacies in Augusta and throughout the nation get busier and busier. As the volume and pace of work increases, there is a greater possibility for mistakes. After all, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians alike are only human. We strive to be perfect in all transactions, but know we will fall short of that lofty goal. Mistakes are inevitable. So what should you do when there is a pharmacy error? How are mistakes prevented and who can prevent them? Can customers help protect themselves from a mistake in the pharmacy? Fortunately, compared to the number of prescriptions processed every day there are very few pharmacy errors. Most can be corrected before they leave the pharmacy simply by everyone being vigilant and working together. As we wrote about in a previous article, pay close attention when picking up your medications. Don’t be on the phone or busy chasing kids. Know what’s inside that little white bag and what you are signing for at the register. If you sign for four prescriptions, let’s say, you are certifying that you received - you guessed it - four prescriptions. If you discover at home that you only have three and you’ve signed for four, you may not be able to get the fourth one later. The pharmacy and your insurance company will see that you signed for it and therefore you must have lost it. Also, if you have prescriptions with special storage instructions, make sure that those conditions have been followed by the pharmacy. Most pharmacy vials are light protective, but that’s far from the only issue. Some medications need to be stored in a refrigerator or in the manufacturer’s original bottle. If you have one of these medications and one time it comes to you different from these requirements, check with the pharmacist. Insulin is an example of a medication that must be refregerated. If the pharmacy fills your insulin prescription and then puts it on a storage shelf awaiting your arrival instead of in the refrigerator, they can discard the room temperature vial and quickly label another vial for you. Problem solved before you leave the register. Mistakes which can be resolved before you even leave the pharmacy counter are by far the most common. Much less common is the wrong pill in the wrong bottle,

but that’s certainly not impossible. If you are ever confronted with a familiar or long-time prescription that has a new look, definitely check with the pharmacist. Have him or her verify that it is simply a different manufacturer of your same old pill. Let’s imagine the worst has happened and you have been given the wrong medication. Never take a pill that looks different from what you expect. Call your pharmacy and ask before assuming anything. Read your label and make sure that the directions sound right and that the name on the label is correct. If you do receive the wrong medication, return it to the pharmacy and get the correct product for your condition. Pharmacies are eager to remedy any situation involving a mistake on their part and will gladly correct any error. Here’s a helpful tip: if a mistake occurs, don’t go back to the pharmacy all threatening and belligerent. This just puts everyone on the defensive and will needlessly delay the quick and efficient service you have come to expect. I can assure you that no pharmacist would ever knowingly give anyone the wrong medications. Although human perfection seems to be an impossible goal, pharmacists are particularly obsessive people when it comes to accuracy. We strive for perfection and when we miss that mark, you can rest assured we want to correct the mistake. By working together we can prevent mistakes and their consequences. Every reputable and conscientious pharmacist is dedicated to accurately filling the prescriptions with which they are entrusted and pharmacists and patients alike should see each other as members of the same healthcare team. We should all work together to achieve a good outcome with every prescription transaction. Questions about this article or suggestions for future columns can be sent to us at cjdlpdrph@bellsouth.net + Written for the Medical Examiner by Augusta pharmacists Chris and Lee Davidson (cjdlpdrph@bellsouth.net )

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AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

FIRST PERSON… from page 3

i’ve learned to ignore that little voice in my head that says i can’t.

I can honestly say that I have run a majority of my butt (and my gut) off. I still have work to do, but I am proud of the progress that I have made so far. I have learned to ignore that little voice in my head that says I can’t because I can and will. For all of you who think you can’t do it, you can. All you have to do is get out there and try. Trust me; if I can do it, you can too. It also helps to have a great running buddy who will help keep you motivated and hold you accountable. I would not have made it this far without Tami. We have had a great time and some really good laughs during this first year. We have even experienced some not so good times, like the heat wave known as the Fireball 5K, but we learned from those experiences and now laugh about them. We have also met many cool new people, as well as seeing old friends again. There is nothing cooler than running into old friends at races. So, here is to Year One of our running journey!!! +

]

We are now preparing for our very first half marathon in North Carolina later this month (April 21). We will be doing the Flying Pirate Half Marathon Challenge. That means we will run the First Flight 5K on Saturday and then the Flying Pirate Half Marathon on Sunday. Thinking back to the very first time we went out for our very first attempt at running, I never would have imagined that we would be here. I am extremely excited about my running goals for this year. I am looking forward to rerunning many of the races from last year; especially, the 4Kay (Yow) 4K and the Cove Lake 5K because that is where it all started. I can’t wait for next year; I see a full marathon and maybe a triathlon in my future.

by Shameka Pollard Evans, Georgia (currently living in Knoxville, Tennessee)

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accomplished. After that we were hooked. I am happy to report that after one year of running, we have finished 15 races (one 4K, eight 5Ks, two 8Ks, two 10Ks and two 10-mile races).

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we decided at the last minute to do a 4K. We thought this would be a smart way to prepare for the 5K. This was a great idea and would be our introduction to racing. I am so glad Tami was with me because I would have been so intimidated by the other runners that I may have said forget it and just gone home. We learned a lot from that race, had a great time and we even got some really cool shirts. I learned how adrenaline and being in a crowd of runners will help you pick up the pace. I also saw the most amazing thing. There were people in their 70s and 80s RUNNING. Not just jogging, but hauling *** (you fill in the blanks). There was even a 92-year-old man with a walker. Now, that is what I am talking about! I hope that I will be able to be that active when I am in my 70s, 80s and even 90s. The day finally arrived for our very first 5K. I had just two goals for this race: 1, run the entire distance without stopping, and 2, finish in 42 minutes. Well, we ran the entire thing without stopping, AND we finished in 35:09. I could not believe what we had

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AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

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APRIL 6, 2012

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AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

The blog spot From THE Bookshelf Posted Feb. 26, 2012 at http://mdwhistleblower.blogspot.com/

Are doctors honest? “...resolve to be honest at all events; and if in your own judgment you cannot be an honest lawyer, resolve to be honest without being a lawyer.” No need to identify the authorship of the above quotation, which should be known by all discerning readers, such as those who feast on the weekly Whistleblower offering. For those who have suffered a cognitive lapse, I will provide 4 identity clues. Take a guess after each clue. If after the 4th clue you are still clueless, you may need to resort to Google.

Honesty is an absolute virtue.

1) He had a high pitched voice. 2) He was prone to depression and melancholy. 3) He was an ambitious and successful attorney. 4) He was known as “the rail-splitter.” Honesty in medicine is a fundamental pillar of our profession. However, physicians and scientific investigators have the same moral failings as the rest of our species. While we have moved beyond the atrocities of the Tuskegee syphilis “research,” we are actively combating plagiarism, fraud, corporate misconduct and ethical erosion. Most of us believe that our physician’s exam room is a sanctuary from dishonesty. Our own doctor, we believe, while imperfect, is honest and would not knowingly give false information to us. A recent survey published in Health Affairs challenges this assumption and suggests that a new battlefront against medical dishonesty needs to be waged. Nearly 20% of about 1800 physicians surveyed did not soundly reject the notion that patients should never be told a lie. About 10% admitted to having done so themselves. We don’t know the specifics of their truth-stretching, which may have been a well meaning massaging of medical facts or sanitizing a prognosis. Nearly a third of physicians did not agree that medical errors should be disclosed to patients. Keep in mind that while patients have a right be informed about medical mistakes, the current medical malpractice system is a major impediment blocking physicians from admitting error. It’s a little tough for a doctor to tell a patient he messed up when this admission will be used as a legal cudgel against him. I think that honesty is an absolute virtue, and not an elastic concept that can be stretched over questionable behaviors. How would I measure up? Here are examples of advice that I’ve given patients over the years. • Recommended fiber as a treatment for irritable bowel syndrome, although there is no scientific basis for this. • Ordered CAT scan for defensive purposes to minimize my legal vulnerability. • Placed feeding tubes in patients at the request of attending physicians when the medical benefit of this intervention is questionable. • Kept silent when patients were being subjected to overtreatment by me or my colleagues. How do I reconcile my view that I am honest with the above examples? Are my standards of honesty too high, or is my performance too low? Although my level of honesty may be sufficient to practice medicine, according to the unnamed author of the quote that begins this post, it would surely disqualify me from the practice of law. +

The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least. —Author unknown

Let’s do something different this time. Instead of reviewing a book — in this case, Intern: A Doctor’s Initiation by Sandeep Jauhar — let’s see what a random sampling of other reviewers say.

“Jauhar, like most of us, is neither a saint nor an apostle of medicine. He is a little sarcastic, a little bitter, a little naive, a little smarter, and a little stupider than everyone else; in short, the character he writes for himself is the perfect protagonist for a medical internship. As he flinches from the gauntlet run, the grace of his prose allows us to feel every blow. To this young physician, it brought back visceral feelings, and I hope this is not the last literary gut punch we receive from Jauhar.” -Noah Raizman, The Lancet Review “Although after reading his story, it certainly doesn’t urge me in any way to enter the medical field, however, it does give me a better perspective on what a doctor has to go through before reaching that status in life. The stories of both the patients and students were touching, infuriating, heartwarming and tearful. They

explain clearly the emotional and physical roller-coaster these (sleep-deprived in most cases) students must traverse through if they ever hope to reach their desired objective. Unfair though it is, until the medical field catches up with new and innovative ideas in training there will be those who become casualties in seeking to rise above the “boot camp” experience. In the meanwhile, may we come to appreciate the struggles and dedication of doctors like Dr. Sandeep Jauhar.” —Judi Silva at Lokvani.com “Jauhar’s skills as both storyteller and compassionate physician are at their best;

his encounters illustrate the complexity of real-life clinical decision-making. The overall feeling that emerges is that of struggle: patients struggle against the illogical oddities of a broken health care system and less frequently they struggle against their clinicians, but most often they struggle along with their clinicians to reach an acceptable or at least meaningful compromise with the injustices that come with illness. There are no easy answers, and few writers have conveyed this truth more forcefully than Jauhar. ...Those who enjoy good writing for its own sake will savor the crafted texture of this narrative. ...Jauhar captures the essence of how it feels to be a present-day physician in residency training. Memoirs like this serve an important role in exploring and explaining this process to the patients that physicians serve and to physicians themselves.” -S. Ryan Gregory, MD, The Journal of the American Medical Association + Intern: A Doctor’s Initiation by Sandeep Juahar 320 pages, published Jan 6, 2009 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux

the

Clipping File Sugar is toxic That’s the stark conclusion from some research finding just released this week. According to a Fox News report, a University of California (UC) pediatric endocrinologist says obese kids are getting sick in greater numbers for one basic reason only: the amount of sugar in their diet. The report also cites research from UC-Davis showing that high fructose corn syrup causes an increase in “a type of arteryclogging cholesterol, small, dense LDL” which increases the risk of heart disease by forming plaque in arteries. Not that corn syrup is the lone villain: metabolically, sugar and high fructose corn syrup are, in the words of the aforementioned endocrinologist, “equally toxic.” What’s worse, Americans consume about 130 pounds of added sugars per year. Want to know why? Because sugar is extremely addictive. A neuroscientist at the Oregon

Research Institute compared sugar to cocaine after finding through MRI scans that the more sweet foods study subjects eat, the more they build up a sugar tolerance. The more sugar a person consumes, the lower their satisfaction level is, resulting in eating more and more. Are we all going to swear off sugar cold turkey starting now? That’s doubtful. Can we resolve to look for ways to cut sugar consumption every day? Yes. Labor: more laborious At least it is as measured by the time spent engaged in it: pregnant women are now in labor on the big day two to three hours longer than their counterparts in the 1960s. According to new data from the National Institutes of Health and published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, much of the extra labor is spent in the early stages of labor, before pushing begins. The possible reasons are many:

compared to 50 years ago, the average delivering mother today is older, and both moms and babies weigh more than they did in the Sixties. Epidurals for pain relief are known to slow labor down by anywhere from 45 to 90 minutes, and epidurals are given in 55 percent of deliveries today versus a mere 4 percent half a century ago. Fast-acting fat Studying mice, researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine found that a high fat diet can cause artery damage far sooner than previously believed — as quickly as six weeks after being placed on a high-fat diet. First to suffer damage are smaller vessels, which doesn’t bode well for avoiding events like strokes and heart attacks. It’s not that we have to avoid every ounce of fat. That wouldn’t be healthy. But healthful, prudent eating should be our habit, not an exceptional event. +


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APRIL 6, 2012

AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

THE EXAMiNERS

THE MYSTERY WORD

+

Your doctor recommended a radical mastectomy?

by Dan Pearson

That’s correct. And then I’ll have reconstructive surgery.

I’m so sorry. I hope everything will be okay.

What exactly was the official diagnosis?

They’re confident I’ll be just fine.

Temporary mammary loss.

The Mystery Word for this issue: GELARYDMOTO

© 2012 Daniel Pearson All rights reserved.

PUZZLE ACROSS 1. Cup holder? 6. Prepare for publication 10. 2002-03 outbreak (abbrev.) 14. Marx brother 15. Miraculous food (var.) 16. Farm implement 17. Footwear 18. Word in many school names (informal) 19. Talk show host Kelly 20. Up in the air 22. Nearby trials venue 23. _____ Speedwagon 24. Affliction 26. Fate 30. Mammoth tooth 31. Hidden, medically 32. Brain scan letters 33. Golfer Tony (1934-1966) 37. Studies at the last minute 38. __ Course at St. Andrews 39. Alcohol syndrome beginning? 40. Pacific island nervous system disease 41. Spastic colon, for short 42. Vedic god of moral law 43. Some nurses 45. Temperature scale 46. Salted cracker 49. Curve 50. Reuben ingred. 51. Hat with a large brim 57. Remarkable, unusual 58. Area abbrev. 59. Logical prefix 60. Stead 61. Old Chevy 62. 32-D partner 63. To a smaller extent 64. Capital of Yemen 65. Flowers with their own parade

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A E N R

E I I G A O D I D S G B G A L A V N — Henny Youngman

DIRECTIONS: Recreate a timeless nugget of wisdom by using the letters in each vertical column to fill the boxes above. Once any letter is used, cross it out

by Daniel R. Pearson © 2012 All rights reserved. Built in part with software from www.crauswords.com

DOWN 1. New acronym (but soon to be history, in all likelihood) 2. MCG prez (2001-2009) 3. Greek god of love 4. Fencing sword 5. Nares 6. Use 7. Drug program acronym 8. Not revised; unpublished 9. Faucet 10. Fairway heads 11. Similar 12. National gallery restraints 13. Graceful birds 21. Scorer’s ______ 22. Lou Gehrig letters 25. Pull laboriously 26. Pier 27. Beige 28. Surgery leftover 29. Uproarious 32. Carded two Sunday eagles at Augusta in 2004

in the lower half of the puzzle. Letters may be used only once. Black squares indicate spaces between words, and words may extend onto a second line.

34. Sewing case 35. NBA’s Ginobili 36. Exclamation of sorrow and regret 38. Overly preoccupied (usually “with”) 39. Hawker 41. Partridge _____ 42. Part of speech 44. Axilla (in slang) 45. The land of promise 46. Cranium 47. Army leader? 48. Shoe ties 52. Exhort 53. Emperor of Rome 54-68 54. Sisters 55. Small Great Lake (but not the smallest) 56. Lower digits 58. Stroke abbreviation

Solution on page 14.

by Daniel R. Pearson © 2012 All rights reserved

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by Daniel R. Pearson © 2012 All rights reserved. Built with software from www.crauswords.com

U D O K U

DIRECTIONS: Every line, vertical and horizontal, and all nine 9-square boxes must each contain the numbers 1 though 9. Solution on page 14.

Solution p. 14

Use the letters provided at bottom to create words to solve the puzzle. All the listed letters following 1 are the 1st letters of each word; the letters following 2 are 2nd letters of each word, and so on. Try solving words with letter clues and entering unique and minimal choice numbers (such as 5 thru 10 in this puzzle). A sample is shown. Solution on page 14.

S E 1 2 1 2 3 4 5 C 1 2 3 1 2 1

C L 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 2 3 X A B Y 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1 2

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1.ABBCTTMINEW 2.EESNYXAAHHO 3.PCNLVCIA 4.TLRECOI 5.CHAMIR 6.PIEB 7.NEE 8.TE 9.DE 10.N 11.C 12.E

SAMPLE:

1. ILB 2. SLO 3. VI 4. NE 5. D =

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by Daniel R. Pearson © 2012 All rights reserved

BY

All Mystery Word finders will be eligible to win by random drawing. We’ll announce the winner in our next issue!

VISIT WWW.AUGUSTARX.COM TO ENTER! 1

WORDS NUMBER

Simply unscramble the letters, then begin exploring our ads. When you find the correctly spelled word hidden in one of our ads — enter at AugustaRx.com


APRIL 6, 2012 GUEST COLUMN

The Patient’s Perspective

You do have time for good nutrition by Sandra Savell I am a self-employed massage therapist. Most of my clients come to me for stressrelated pain. As I discuss their condition, it is apparent that many of us are overly scheduled and too busy. Work, children, caregiving elderly parents, taking care of home and yard, church activities; all add up to a life that is “on the go.” A schedule of this scale can wreck havoc on family time, the pursuit of hobbies, adequate sleep, exercise and especially.... good nutrition. I often discuss self-care with my massage clients. Good nutrition is vitally important to counteract what stress does to the body. When I broach this subject, I often hear the same complaints. No time to grocery shop. No time or energy to prepare nutritious food. No interest in spending time in the kitchen. No idea of how to make dietary changes. As for consuming five fruits and vegetables daily, I can guarantee that most people will say it’s impossible. In truth, it’s much easier than you ever imagined.

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AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

A serving is usually 1⁄2 cup. That doesn’t amount to having to eat a tub of fruits or veggies. Here are some suggestions on how you can begin putting those vital five fruits and/or vegetables a day into your diet. Everything suggested can be bought at any grocery store, is simple to prepare, and most are easily portable for a busy person. • One 11.5 can of V-8 or tomato juice will provide one serving. A pint of orange juice will provide two servings. Both are loaded with Vitamin C. • One banana will provide two servings and is packed full of potassium. • One small bag of baby carrots will provide two servings and supply beta-carotene. • Individual fruit cups and applesauce are available in grocery stores and provide one serving each. The produce section of all grocery stores now offer fresh, cut fruit of all types. • 1⁄4 cup of raisins or cranberries provide another serving. • Dried fruit of all kinds come in resealable bags and have tons of fiber.

• Many frozen lunches include a serving of vegetables. • A cup of vegetable soup will provide a serving. • Bags of ready-to-eat salad greens, coleslaw mix and shredded carrots make quick and easy salads for dinner. One large salad can provide 3 servings. Add a tomato and some cucumber to that for 4 or 5 servings at one meal! • Frozen veggies are simple to prepare at dinner. Eight minutes in the microwave. Sample Menu: Breakfast: Cereal or oatmeal with 1⁄4 cup raisins and a glass of fruit juice (2 servings). Snack: Fruit cup and 1/3 bag of baby carrots (2). Lunch: Sandwich with a sliced tomato (1). Snack: 1 banana (2). Dinner: Add a small salad to dinner (1). Total for the day: 8 servings of fruit and vegetables! With just a little imagination, a little planning, some conscientious shopping and a desire for improved health; good nutrition is possible even if you are on the go from sunrise to sunset! +

SAVE THE DATES

Earth Day event Golden LivingCenters will host a vendor table at the Georgia Health Sciences University Earth Day Event on Friday April 20, 2012 from 10:00-2:00, at Pavilion 3 (CJ Bldg) & Student Center Courtyard. Stop by and see what Golden Living has to offer. For more information on Golden LivingCenters, contact Frances Winburn at 706-5504846. You may also contact each facility directly. Golden Living Augusta, 706-7383301, Golden Living Windermere, 706-860-7572 +

APRIL FRIDAY

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Nursing Showcase nears The 13th annual Nursing Showcase will be held April 27 at First Baptist Church APRIL of Augusta Fellowship Hall. This event precedes the national observance of Nurses FRIDAY Week, to be commemorated this year May 6 - May 12 with the theme “Nursing: Advocating, Leading, Caring.” Nursing Showcase is an event that brings together hospitals and healthcare agencies throughout the CSRA to recognize and reward registered nurses who excel in their profession. At Showcase, nurses receive special honors for their “Spirit of Nursing” as recognized by their supervisors and peers. Nominees for “Nurse of the Year” receive recognition for providing care beyond expectations. One nominee will be announced as recipient of the “Nurse of the Year” award. Showcase begins at 6:00 p.m. with a reception and poster presentations that will provide continuing education credits. Dinner tickets can be purchased from any Georgia Nurses Association (GNA) board member or by mail request to PO Box 1936, Evans, GA 30809. The GNA’s CSRA Chapter website address is www.csra-gna10.org. +

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by Marcia Ribble One of the big concerns for patients with disabilities, especially when mobility is an issue, is socialization necessary to prevent isolation and subsequent depression. Older folks often think of socialization as a solely face-to-face set of ongoing interactions with others. But today more and more seniors are becoming tech savvy. This allows for seniors to remain connected in ways our parents couldn’t be with relatives, long term friends, as well as former workplace friends and colleagues. We might tend to think in terms of the phone and mail, things our older relatives employed, but today we need to add cell phones, computers with email, Facebook, and other internet resources for remaining in touch with people we care about and with the world around us. Our children and grandchildren often have the knowledge that will let them help us to learn to use these innovations. Also some senior centers, churches, and nearby colleges offer classes in using computers and the internet specifically for seniors who may have a need for a slower learning pace and lots of repetition. Today computers are not as expensive as they once were, so a computer can be a nice gift as long as help with hooking them up and starting to use them is given along with the computer. Cell phones are another connector for older people, especially those with mobility issues. Again, some may need help and support when they begin to use cell phones. A cell phone in my pocket means I can go places and remain connected to all kinds of sources of help if I need them. This allows me to get out more often and more safely. But more important still is the role these technologies can play in helping us to remain a contributing member of society long after we have lost some of our mobility. Email allows me to remain active in politics by communicating with my

Talk is cheap. Not talking can be deadly.

political representatives. I can influence votes in the House and Senate. Email makes it possible for me to maintain connections with the field I retired from. I can be informed about new ways of teaching, support new teachers, and discuss issues. Email connects me to individuals I would not have met otherwise through sites like SeniorPeopleMeet.com. Email helps me to keep informed about the lives of people I care about. I have old friends I communicate with via email to keep us aware of one another’s lives, movements around the country, and other facets of our lives. I can listen to their concerns and respond to them. I can help them to feel loved and cared for. I can even play games on the computer to keep my mind sharp and make Alzheimer’s less of a likelihood. I also write using the computer, whether articles like this one or works the size of novels. When I communicate via electronic technologies, no one I’m talking with knows that I have mobility issues or any other physical problems unless I tell them. This frees me and allows me to live normally, remaining both necessary and useful as I age. I recommend this approach to all who want to remain active despite physical problems. + Marcia Ribble received her PhD in English at Michigan State University and recently retired from the University of Cincinnati where she taught composition. She has taught writing at the college level since 1985, and loves giving voice to people who have been silenced. She can be reached with comments, suggestions, etc. at marciaribble@hotmail.com.

+ +

WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR MEDICAL EXAMINER? +

Augusta

Among our many delivery destinations: the Richmond County Health Department, the Lucy Laney Craft Museum, and the MCGHealth Cancer Center, all on LaneyWalker Blvd., Walton Options on Walton Way, and Christ Community Health Services in Olde Town. +


+ 14

APRIL 6, 2012

AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

THE MYSTERY SOLVED The Mystery Word in our last issue was: FATIGUE ...carefully hidden in the page 10 ad for EVANS CHRISTIAN ACADEMY

EXAMINER CLASSIFIEDS HOMES, APARTMENTS, ROOMMATES, LAND, ETC. GETAWAY 14 acres natural wooded with beautiful rocky creek flowing through. Available immediately to enjoy while planning future devel. Hiking trails cleared, hunting, fishing, golf near outstanding Glascock school system. Call owner: 706-798-4359

WEST AUGUSTA Luxury 3 BR / 2 BA Townhouse, 1-car attached garage located off Pleasant Home Road $725 /mo 706-228-4655 TOWNHOME 3 bedroom, 3 full bath townhome. 2 master suites, like new, end unit with extra parking, single garage, covered patio, $125,000. 706-799-0394

81712

Congratulations to Frankie Nevins, who scores a $20 Wild Wing Cafe gift certificate, two free movie passes courtesy of Health Center Credit Union, a free Top Notch Car Wash gift card, and anything else we may be able to scrape together on short notice. Win this stuff! The new Mystery Word is on p. 12. Start looking!

The Celebrated MYSTERY WORD CONTEST ...wherein we hide (with fiendish cleverness) a simple word. All you have to do is unscramble the word (found on page 12), then be the first to find it concealed within one of our ads. Click in to the contest link at www.AugustaRx.com and enter. If we pick you in our random drawing of correct entries you’ll score our goodie package: gift certificates from Wild Wing Cafe, Top Notch Car Wash, Cheddar’s, and movie passes from Health Center Credit Union! SEVEN SIMPLE RULES: 1. Unscramble and find the designated word hidden within one of the ads in this issue. 2. Visit the Reader Contests page at www.AugustaRx.com. 3. Tell us what you found and where you found it. 4. If you’re right and you’re the one we pick at random, you win. (WInners within the past six months are ineligible.) 5. Prizes awarded to winners may vary from issue to issue. 6. A photo ID may be required to claim some prizes. 7. Other entrants may win a lesser prize at the sole discretion of the publisher.

The new scrambled Mystery Word is found on page 12

SENDING US A CLASSIFIED? USE THE FORM BELOW AND MAIL IT IN, OR GO TO WWW.AUGUSTARX.COM AND PLACE & PAY CONVENIENTLY AND SAFELY ONLINE. THANKS!

Augusta Medical Examiner Classifieds

HOUSE FOR SALE 3 bedroom, 2 full bath, 2-car garage. Off Dyess Pkwy near Ft. Gordon. $99,900. Call 706-3395548 or 706-210-4334 TOWNHOME large furnished room (dresser, bed, night stand, linens) for rent with private bathroom in convenient and very nice neighborhood near Doctors Hosp. $445 a month includes utilities and Internet service. Please contact 706589-0238 ask for May.

SERVICES HOME HEALTH CHECK-UP Biological and chemical contamination will make you sick. Help your doctor! We Cure Sick Homes. 706-772-9898 www.commandonow.com LYNN’S CLEANING SERVICE over 20 years experience in the CSRA with an eye for detail. Call 706.833.2658 or email lynn_dubose@hotmail.com 1612

APARTMENT One bedroom, one bath garage apartment, $595/mo. TOWNHOME Two bedroom, 1.5 bath townhome, $645/mo. Quiet West Augusta area. 706.951.3598 or 706.855.5986

SAY IT THE WRITE WAY Online editing, proofing, writing and drafting service. Visit http://sayitthewriteway.webs.com or email proofing-editing@live.com

TOWNHOME Great location, everything new, 2 master suites, sunroom, all appliances. $98,000 (706) 504-4023

SPARKLING CLEAN Looking for offices to clean. No contract req. Husband & wife team have years experience and give FREE on-request estimates. Call 706.831.8552 or 706.831.8553

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HOMESBYOWNER.COM Sell • Buy • Rentals • 706.564.5885

BIBLE BY PHONE - Free daily Bible

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(Copy this form or continue on additional sheet if more space needed.)

Send this form with payment to:

AUGUSTA MEDICAL EXAMINER, PO BOX 397, AUGUSTA, GA 30903-0397 Total ad cost by number of words as shown above: $

PERSONAL TRAINER Certified by United States Sports Academy in Science of Bodybuilding and Strength Training for Athletes. Significant improvements for all sports at all ages. Natural techniques for relief of all common sports-related injuries employing positioning and myofascial release. Rapid recovery and strength gains. One free session to 1st 10 applicants. E-mail Hme3065805@aol.com or call 803-257-5421 CAREGIVER/COMPANION Need a ride to the doctor, store, etc. or someone to come in to visit and help you. Great References, reasonable rates. Call (706) 589-1698 or email msmagic4@yahoo.com.

WHAT’S YOUR DRUG OF CHOICE?

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SEE PAGE 12

QUOTATION QUOTATION PUZZLE SOLUTION: Page 12: “When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading.” — Henny Youngman

AD COPY (one word per line; phone numbers MUST include the area code): .50

LAWN SERVICE Commercial, residential. Call Vince: (704) 490-1005

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In case we need to contact you. These numbers will not appear in the ad.

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NOTICE! ATTENTION! If any current or past employer has failed to pay you min. wage or time and a half overtime pay, you may be entitled to an order from US Federal Court awarding you twice the amount of your unpaid wages plus atty. fees. For info, call Arthur H. Shealy, Attorney at Law, 803-278-5149, 1010 Plantation Rd, North Augusta SC 29841. You may be entitled to a similar award for unpaid wages if your employer required you to perform duties during your lunch hour, before clocking in, or after clocking out.

THE PUZZLE SOLVED

CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING FORM Name Address Work number (if applicable) ( ) Home phone ( ) Category of ad (leave blank if unsure):

readings; for Spiritual Encouragement and Growth. Call 706-855-WORD (9673)

The Sudoku Solution

COFFEE IS GOOD MEDICINE VISIT DRUGOFCHOICECOFFEE.COM FOR YOUR REFILLS TODAY

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WORDS BY NUMBER “Never ascribe to malice that which can be explained by incompetence.” — Napoleon

Multiply by number of times ad to run: x Total submitted: $

The Augusta Medical Examiner publishes on the 1st and 3rd Friday of every month. Your ad should reach us no later than 5 days prior to our publication date.

Thanks for reading!

www.AugustaRx.com


APRIL 6, 2012

15 +

AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

SWC… from page 16 Now the onus was on him. He knew the consequences of not taking his medication, but because he felt he would be fine without it his entire life has been derailed. Unfortunately there are many more examples of similar scenarios. If you have pneumonia, COPD, or even lung cancer, stop smoking!!! I understand it can be difficult to stop, but I’ve seen miracles with even the heaviest smokers who’ve used nicotine patches, medications and counseling. It works, and there are support systems in place to help you stop. Plus buying cigarettes is expensive and the costs are going to continue to increase. Use that money to buy yourself something special or go on that vacation you’ve been dreaming about. Maybe even spend that money on groceries or medications you may need. That’s something else I’ve seen numerous times as well: money that needs to be spent on medications is being spent somewhere else. While cigarettes are the classic example of where money is going instead of medicine, the latest expense I’ve seen is on iPhones. If you can afford one and pay the monthly data plan that’s needed for it, and especially if your children have their own smart phones, why can’t you afford your medications? It can be very hard

for me to understand that you are unable to afford medications that are on the $4 list or even free at big box stores while that expensive phone is in your hand. And what’s frustrating is knowing how quickly medical conditions can become dangerous when they’re ignored or untreated. I’ve seen uncontrolled hypertension turn into a paralyzing stroke. I’ve seen a urinary tract infection in a child turn into full blown sepsis. I’ve seen uncontrolled diabetes turn into renal failure. Unfortunately, that’s the reality of medicine today and it’s upsetting. I

don’t know if it will change for better or continue to get worse. But I take solace in knowing that as frustrated as I’ve become, there are patients out there that I can form a relationship with — and with some I already have — to work together and improve their health and their lives. +

Hevil Shah, MPH, is a senior medical student at GHSU’s Medical College of Georgia. He may be reached at hevil. shah@gmail.com.

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For more information or to make a referral, please contact us: KNOB HILL ASSISTED LIVING CENTER Ryan Hunt • huntglobalinc@gmail.com 2822 Knob Hill Farm Road • Evans, GA 30809

706-860-0541

39

$

COMMANDO SERVICES

LOCAL HOME INSPECTION CALL TODAY!

706-772-9898

ADVERTISE HERE! It’s inexpensive and effective and provides exposure on paper and online. CALL 706.860.5455 FOR INFORMATION TODAY!

FAMILY MEDICINE CPC-EVANS

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CPC-AIKEN

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410 HITCHCOCK PARKWAY NEW CPC OFFICE AS OF AUG. 1

706.922.6600

803.649.6941

Evans, South, Crossroads, Central and North Augusta offices open 8:30 am-8:00 pm Monday thru Thursday and 8:30 am-5:00 pm Friday Aiken office hours: 8:30 am-8:00 pm Mon & Tue and 8:30 am-5:00 pm Wed thru Fri CPC-Crossroads open weekends for CPC patients with acute care needs. Please call ahead.

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D.O.C.S. HELPING DOCS T H O R O U G H • D E P E N DA B L E • D I L I G E N T • H O N E S T • • • DA I LY • B I -W E E K LY • W E E K LY • P R N

7 0 6.2 8 4.7 2 8 7

FREE E ST I M AT E S

TO ADVERTISE HERE CALL 706.860.5455


+ 16

APRIL 6, 2012

AUGUSTA MEDiCAL EXAMINER

The Short White Coat by Hevil Shah

M

y life as a medical student is almost at the end. In a little over a month, I’ll be walking across the stage with my diploma in hand. Come this summer, I’ll be starting my pediatric residency at Arkansas Children’s Hospital. And while I’m happy, excited, elated (and any other synonym you can think of) about starting the next stage in my medical career, I cannot help but feel heavy hearted knowing I’m leaving school slightly more cynical than when I started. Don’t get me wrong. I wouldn’t trade the opportunity to be in medicine for the world. But when I came into medical school, in my naïveté I believed that in end I would be helping patients out during their greatest need. While that is the case sometimes, at other times it seems that for today’s physician, patient care is at odds with two obstacles: administrative tasks and battling patients’ attitudes toward self-responsibility. Paperwork is the bane of a physician’s existence. It seems for every minute that a

patient is seen, up to double that time is spent taking care of paperwork. There are no doubt good reasons for this. As litigious as society has become and how quickly healthcare policy has been changing, it has become very important to document every detail. But as patients, you’ve seen the consequences of that. To help pay for administrative costs and not be in the red, the number of patients seen and wait time has increased, while the time spent with physicians has decreased. The work seems to have multiplied despite the transition to electronic medical records. Different systems don’t communicate with each other as they should and occasionally, as with any computer, the system crashes, requiring us to go back to paper charts. As vexing as all of that can be, the more disconcerting thing I’ve noticed is how quickly self-responsibility is declining. I recently met a young man who had a kidney transplant when he was an adolescent. For ten years, he had been doing great with no other health problems. The only thing he had to do — and was told to do at every checkup

A med student’s notebook he ever had — was to take his medications so his body wouldn’t reject his donated kidney. In college, seeing his friends not tied down with medications and being healthy himself, he stopped his daily regimen. A few weeks later he was admitted to the hospital. He was in renal failure. He completely destroyed his transplanted kidney and will now have to be placed back on the transplant list. Because he is more than 18 years old, he will be placed on the adult list, where there are many more patients waiting for a kidney than the pediatric list. I think this all comes down to taking ownership of your life and actions. He wasn’t living at home anymore where his parents kept a close eye on him.

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“YES”

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