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March Madness? How About Vein Vitality?
Set aside your March Madness brackets for a time this month to consider your vein health. March is Deep Vein Thrombosis Awareness Month so it’s the perfect time to brush up on this common and often dangerous condition. “People tend to underestimate the importance of vein health,” said Anil Kumar, MD, FAAC, RPVI, Medical Director of the Vein Center at Yavapai Regional Medical Center in Prescott Valley. “They may dismiss vein issues as cosmetic, rather than a health problem.” While the exact number with deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is unknown, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates as many as 900,000 people could be affected each year in the United States. Among people who experience DVT, half will have long-term complications because of the condition. DVT is a blood clot that forms in a deep vein of the leg, which can be caused by lack of exercise, pregnancy, smoking, oral contraceptives, age, obesity, family history and more. No matter the cause, these blood clots can obstruct blood flow and lead to other complications, including: Pulmonary Embolism – This happens when a blood clot breaks free, travels through the bloodstream and eventually becomes lodged in a vessel of the lungs. The blood clot in the lungs will restrict blood flow, causing chest pain and breathing difficulties. Post-Thrombotic Syndrome – Blood clots can damage the valves of the veins that control the direction of blood flow in the body. This can lead to pain and swelling as fluid leaks from the veins and pools in the extremities. What are the signs and symptoms of DVT? The most frequent is swelling in the affected leg. Cramping or soreness that begins in the calf is also a common symptom. Some people experience a feeling of warmth in the affected leg as well as red or discolored skin on the leg. “There are ways to lower your risk for DVT,” Dr. Kumar said. “If you’re in a situation – whether that’s your job or travel – that requires you to sit for long periods, it’s important to move around every two to three hours.” Dr. Kumar also recommends doing leg lifts, flexes and bends while you are sitting. Loose-fitting clothing as well as compression stockings are excellent ways to reduce the risk for DVT. “Maintaining a healthy weight through diet and exercise are also key,” he said. “Both of these should be monitored by your physician and based on your individual risk for DVT.” For more information about DVT, talk to your primary care physician or call YRMC’s Vein Center at (928) 759-5890. The Vein Center at YRMC is located at the Del E. Webb Outpatient Center, 3262 North Windsong Drive in Prescott Valley.
YRMC’s Vein Center: New Painless Vein Treatment
The Vein Center at Yavapai Regional Medical Center (YRMC) is the first provider in northern Arizona to offer VenaSeal™ ablation therapy to treat varicose veins, spider veins and other symptoms of the vein disease, chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). “Patients are very happy with VenaSeal ablation therapy,” said Anil Kumar, MD, FAAC, RPVI, Medical Director of the Vein Center at YRMC in Prescott Valley. “This new therapy does not require multiple injections to numb their legs, which can be painful or uncomfortable for people. Also, after VenaSeal ablation therapy, most people do not need to wear compression stockings.” CVI occurs when the valves in the veins of the lower leg no longer function properly. This makes blood flow backward, which leads to enlarged or varicose veins as well as other painful symptoms. “Chronic venous insufficiency can result in lifestyle-limiting lower leg pain, swelling, skin damage and ulcerations,” said Dr. Kumar. “It’s a serious condition that affects many people in our community.” During VenaSeal ablation therapy, Dr. Kumar places a small amount of VenaSeal™ – a medical adhesive – into the vein through a narrow catheter. Once VenaSeal™ closes the vein, blood is immediately re-routed through other healthy veins in the leg. “The procedure takes approximately one hour from the time the patient arrives at the Vein Center,” Dr. Kumar said. “Immediately following VenaSeal ablation therapy, the patient is ready to resume normal activities.” Depending on the extent of the CVI, the patient may need to undergo VenaSeal ablation therapy a number of times. “The good news is that VenaSeal ablation therapy works,” said Dr. Kumar, “and the patient is comfortable during and following the procedure.” For more information about VenaSeal ablation therapy, talk to your healthcare provider or contact the Vein Center at YRMC at (928) 759-5890. The Vein Center at YRMC is located in the YRMC Del E. Webb Outpatient Building at 3262 N. Windsong Drive in Prescott Valley.
A Prescott Resident Remembers a Childhood with Polio
Joan Michelbrink grew up in Ohio on the shores of Lake Erie, but she doesn’t have many memories of splashing in the water with friends. “You didn’t dare swim in the lake,” she said. “We were all afraid of getting polio.” A child of the 1940s and ‘50s, Joan experienced the world before the polio vaccine. When polio struck a community, movie theaters shutdown, camps and schools closed, and everyday life came to a halt until the epidemic passed. “I grew up with polio and had friends who came down with it,” she said. “It was a sad time.” Fast forward to 1970. Joan, her husband Jerry and their children had settled in Prescott after exploring several other Arizona communities. “As soon as I saw downtown and the Courthouse Square, I said, ‘This is it,’” she recalled. “It reminded me of what we had left in Ohio.” In 1974, Joan was hospitalized at Yavapai Community Hospital – now Yavapai Regional Medical Center (YRMC) – for a medical procedure. In the hall outside of her room, Joan saw a piece of equipment she recognized from her childhood: an iron lung. The device – long since retired – was on its way to storage. While resting in her hospital room, Joan heard a group of high school students discussing the iron lung. It was apparent they didn’t know what it was or that it had helped people their age breathe when their lungs were paralyzed by the polio virus. “I remember being amazed and thinking that because of the vaccine, their generation didn’t have to worry about polio,” said Joan. “I thought it was wonderful.” Joan also has seen healthcare change in her community. “When we moved here, I was told the hospital had 34 beds,” she said. “Now they have the Heart Center, the BreastCare Center, oncologists and other specialists. It’s amazing.” Joan and Jerry are grateful these healthcare services are available to their children, grandchildren and great grandchildren – all living in Prescott except for one grandson. “He’s moving back to Prescott from Texas,” she said. Because, like his grandmother, he knows Prescott is home.
Yavapai Regional Medical Center’s Diabetes Education Program Merits American Diabetes Association Recognition
The prestigious American Diabetes Association (ADA) Education Recognition Certificate for a quality diabetes self-management education program was recently awarded to the Pendleton Center at Yavapai Regional Medical Center. The ADA believes that YRMC’s Diabetes Education Program offers high-quality education that is an essential component of effective diabetes treatment and management. The Association’s Education Recognition Certificate assures that educational programs meet the National Standards for Diabetes Self-Management Education Programs. These Standards were developed and tested under the auspices of the National Diabetes Advisory Board in 1983 and were revised by the diabetes community in 1994, 2000, 2007 and 2012. Programs apply for Recognition voluntarily. Programs that achieve Recognition status have a staff of knowledgeable healthcare professionals who can provide participants with comprehensive information about diabetes management. “The process gives our highly-trained professionals a national standard by which to measure the quality of services they provide,” comments Andrea Klein, Director of Preventive Medicine, Wellness and Cardiac Rehabilitation at YRMC. “It also assures our patients that they will receive high-quality service when they participate in our diabetes management programs.” According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2017 National Diabetes Statistic Report there are 30.3 million people or 9.4 percent of the population in the United States who have diabetes. While an estimated 23.1 million have been diagnosed, unfortunately, 7.2 million people are not aware that they have this disease. Each day more than 3,900 people are diagnosed with diabetes. Many will first learn that they have diabetes when they are treated for one of its life-threatening complications – heart disease and stroke, kidney disease, blindness, nerve disease and amputation. About 1.5 million new cases of diabetes were diagnosed in people aged 18 years or older in 2015. The American Diabetes Association is the nation’s leading non-profit health organization supporting diabetes research, advocacy and information for health professionals, patients and the public. Founded in 1940, the Association conducts programs in communities nationwide. For more information on recognized education programs in your area or other American Diabetes Association programs, call the ADA office at 1.900.DIABETE (342-2383) or contact the ADA online. To learn more about the diabetes education programs at Yavapai Regional Medical Center, please call the Pendleton Center at YRMC at (928) 771-5794.
A Matter of Balance Classes Set for March, 2018
According to the Center for Disease Control, one out of every four adults in the United States aged 65 or older suffers a fall each year. While this statistic is alarming, it is reassuring to know that many falls are predictable and preventable. Education and activity are essential components of preventing falls, particularly as we age. Knowing how to build balance, strength, stamina and coordination is key. A Matter of Balance is an award-winning program designed to manage falls. Sponsored by Yavapai Regional Medical Center and Area Agency on Aging NACOG, the class allows you to safely increase your activity level so you can enjoy life without the fear of falling. A new A Matter of Balance session begins March 6th. There are eight, two-hour sessions, led by trained facilitators. The class is ideal for anyone who is concerned about falls and wants to improve their balance, flexibility and strength. Those who have fallen in the past, as well as anyone who has restricted their activities because of falling concerns will also benefit. You will learn to: view falls as controllable set goals for increasing activity make changes to reduce fall risks at home exercise to increase strength and balance The class will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays, March 6th through March 29th, from 3 PM to 5 PM at the YRMC Wellness/Pendleton Center, 930 Division Street in Prescott. For more information or to register, please call (928) 771-5794.
YRMC Celebrates 75 Years on March 1, 2018
On March 1, 1943, Prescott Community Hospital – now Yavapai Regional Medical Center (YRMC) – opened its doors to care for patients. By 9:00 p.m. on that date, Florence Yount, MD, had delivered the first baby born at the new hospital. “This marked the official launch of a 75-year relationship between YRMC and the community,” said John Amos, President and CEO of YRMC. “From the beginning, the people of this community understood the importance of creating a healthcare delivery system to meet their unique needs. They believed firmly that lots of good would result from neighbors caring for neighbors.” A History of Community Support That belief was clear as many community members pitched in to ensure Prescott Community Hospital – converted from Jefferson Elementary School on Marina Street – was equipped and ready to care for patients. Longtime Prescott resident and community leader Elisabeth Ruffner was involved in efforts to establish the hospital as a nonprofit provider, available to all people in the community. Ruffner recalls that Jefferson Elementary School was purchased for $1,000. A group of community members, including Ruffner, wrote the cornerstone document – Prescott Community Hospital Association Inc., a Non-Profit Corporation in the State of Arizona – that designated the hospital as a community-based, not-for-profit provider. These same people and many others in the community were involved in ensuring the hospital was equipped and ready to provide care. “We furnished the school cafeteria as an operating room,” Ruffner said. “Dr. Yount traveled the region looking for beds, stoves, tables – any kind of hospital equipment she could buy. Physicians’ wives went door-to-door for donations. All of the businesses stepped up so we could open a hospital in that abandoned school building.” A Milestone Vote Fast forward several decades and the community was again at a crossroads that concerned healthcare. In 1960, the community voted to establish the Central Yavapai Hospital District. This was followed in 1962 by a vote to build a new hospital that would replace Prescott Community Hospital. Ruffner recalls the excitement surrounding the vote and the community conversations about it. “I believe it was the first time, at least in Arizona, of a non-profit local association taking over a government hospital,” said Ruffner. “We provided a clinic for the county and then with a Hill-Burton Grant from the federal government, we built the wing to the south, which is now Yavapai Regional Medical Center.” An article in the Prescott Evening Courier characterized the vote as part of a larger effort that would allow the community to “…attract new industry and other economic assets, including a college and tourists, so that local residents will benefit from more job opportunities and a higher standard of living …” In 1964, the hospital relocated to its current location on Willow Creek Road and changed its name to Yavapai Community Hospital. The hospital underwent another name change in 1984, becoming Yavapai Regional Medical Center. This change reflected the scope of its advanced medical services and growing service area. YRMC Heads East to Prescott Valley The rapid growth of Prescott Valley helped spur another important milestone for the community: the opening of YRMC East in 2006. “People were waiting for YRMC to open. They wanted it here. They needed the medical services,” said Prescott Valley Mayor Harvey Skoog, who had long advocated for the hospital. “We had the opening of the hospital and here I thought it would just be a hospital, but we have all these other services, like the BreastCare Center and Imaging Services. Today we have 45,000 people and this is just a phenomenal part of our growth.” YRMC’s Journey: Moving Forward, Maintaining Original Values For Robbie Nicol, MBA, CFRE, Executive Director of Community Outreach and Philanthropy at YRMC, the organization’s journey illustrates the community’s commitment to locally operated healthcare as well as its support for advanced facilities and services. “This is part of the DNA of our community,” she said. “I think about how the community coalesced to equip the cafeteria turned operating room at the first hospital on Marina Street. Then I think about the support YRMC received for its hybrid surgical suite at YRMC West. Both were possible because the people we serve believe in community-based healthcare and support state-of-the-art services.” In 2018, YRMC accomplishes this through a vast network of healthcare services throughout the community. In addition to YRMC West and YRMC East, the community has access to excellent healthcare through a total of 24 primary and specialty YRMC PhysicianCare Clinics in Prescott, Prescott Valley, Chino Valley and Bagdad. “YRMC also cares for people with chronic and specialized needs,” Nicol said. “The BreastCare Center at YRMC and the James Family Heart Center at YRMC are examples of lifesaving, specialty services.” Help Tell the Story of Healthcare in Our Community YRMC’s 75th anniversary celebration theme “Yesterday – Today – Tomorrow” highlights the meaning of community-based, not-for-profit healthcare. YRMC is giving people the opportunity to join this conversation by sharing anecdotes from their lives that involve the hospital. Video interviews, stories and images are being gathered for the YRMC Memory Catcher project. Visit YRMC HealthConnect to explore YRMC’s history as told by the community. The Memory Catcher project features familiar people, including for example: Jean Phillips, Community Leader Elisabeth Ruffner, Community Leader The Olsen and Sischka Family, Business and Community Leaders Harvey Skoog, Mayor of Prescott Valley JC Trujillo, General Manager of Prescott Frontier Days and Bareback World Championship Rider “Memory Catcher visitors also will meet folks who have grown up in the community or are new to the area. They have wonderful, interesting and amusing stories to share,” said Ken Boush, Director of Marketing and Communications at YRMC. “All of these anecdotes create a tapestry that tell the story of YRMC and its 75-year relationship with the community. We’re encouraging people throughout our community to share their stories.”
Roasted, Seasoned Nuts and Seeds: A Perfect Go-To Snack
What does Registered Dietician and Diabetes Educator Rita Carey Rubin reach for when she needs a quick, healthy snack? “Nuts and seeds are the perfect snack!” says Rita, host of YRMC’s Your Healthy Kitchen, “They’re filled with protein, fiber, healthy fat and a little carbohydrate and they tend to be filling.” Rita explains to Sandy Moss, host of AZTV’s Sandy and Friends, that the healthy fats in seeds and nuts give you a sense of satiety so you don’t have to eat much to feel satisfied. They offer an energy boost between meals without the energy ‘crash’ that can happen with sugary or highly processed snacks. This is key to avoiding overeating between meals. Some people prefer plain, raw, unsalted nuts and seeds. However, Rita has several suggestions on how to boost their flavor and add variety. It begins with simply toasting the nuts or seeds in a pan on the stovetop or on a baking sheet in the oven. From there, seasoning nuts and seeds is only limited by your imagination. Rita’s go-to seasonings include soy sauce, tamari, or Umeboshi plum vinegar, one of her favorite seasonings. “If you want to sweeten things up a bit, you can toss the nuts and seeds with a sweetener like honey or maple syrup and combine with some spice,” she suggests. You can also try tossing walnuts with maple syrup, smoked chili and a little salt for a tasty and unusual snack. Click here for Rita’s Maple Glazed Walnuts with Rosemary and Lemon Zest recipe, available for downloading and printing. Learn more about cooking simple, fresh and delicious meals and check out all of Rita’s videos and recipes at yrmchealthconnect.org. You can also follow Rita on Facebook at YRMC’s Your Healthy Kitchen. YRMC’s Your Healthy Kitchen is one of the many ways that Yavapai Regional Medical Center, your not-for-profit hospital, provides health education and support to the citizens of Western Yavapai County.
Patients Celebrate Their Providers
On National Doctors’ Day, it’s patients who are the “medical experts” in Yavapai County. Each March 30, the Yavapai Regional Medical Center (YRMC) Foundation invites residents throughout the region to submit notes recognizing individual physicians for the exceptional care they provide. These patients also have the option of making a donation in honor of the physician. “The notes we receive from patients demonstrate the significance of the physician-patient relationship,” said Robbie Nicol, MBA, CFRE, Executive Director of the YRMC Foundation. “It’s apparent to me these people believe a strong patient-physician partnership is important to healing. It’s also clear our physicians are listening to the people they serve.” On Doctors’ Day 2017, more than 85 YRMC physicians were recognized with heartfelt messages from “Grateful Patients.” Additionally, patients collectively gave more than $10,000 to the YRMC Foundation in honor of their respective physicians. On behalf of these exceptional doctors, the YRMC Foundation thanks these patients for their inspiring messages and generous support. YRMC doctors recognized on National Doctors’ Day receive a Grateful Patient lapel pin. Here’s a sampling of notes of recognition doctors received in 2017. Anthony Brown, DO, Internal Medicine “Dr. Brown is exceptional – friendly, informative and kind. He knows I have a fear of elevators and sends someone with me to labs.” Donald Golen, MD, Neurology “Blessings this Doctors’ Day to Dr. Golen. We acknowledge your caring and directness even when giving us bad news.” Robert Kec, MD, Emergency Department Physician “Dr. Kec, you and your staff created such a calming atmosphere as you listened to the unknown difficulties of an individual in the wee hours! You are outstanding. Thank you.” Michael Lacaze, DO, Family Medicine “Dr. Lacaze is very professional, kind, and listens to you. Always makes the patient feel he’s doing his best to care for you at each visit. I’m glad to have him as my primary care doctor.” Arabinda Pani, MD, Emergency Department Physician “Dr. Pani, you helped my husband in the East Campus ER in March. He had great unexplained pain, and you gently but directly explained the various possible causes and likelihood of each. Wonderful knowledge and bedside manner!” Jonathan Parrack, DO, Gastroenterology “Dr. Parrack adds the personal touch of keeping in touch.” Fernando Soto, MD, Cardiology “Dr. Soto is always there for me. When my primary care physician left, he helped me find a new doctor and arranged for some tests I needed for a different specialty.” Keith A. Plamondon, MS, PA-C, Physician Assistant “Keith Plamondon, PA-C, is always knowledgeable, a good listener and gentle. He takes interest and time with me, and does not over medicate. He is really great!” Alan Walters, MD, General Surgeon “Dr. Walters was concerned, kind, honest, and always came by to see me while in the hospital. Very trustworthy.” To recognize a physician who has made a difference for you or a loved one, please send your expression of appreciation to: Yavapai Regional Medical Center Foundation 1003 Willow Creek Road Prescott, AZ 86301