April 2012
Blog

April 2012 posts

First Hill Streetcar Project: Stay Informed Here

Read the “Weekly Project Update” to find out what to expect each week during construction.
Visit Seattle's First Hill Streetcar page for more information about the First Hill Streetcar project.

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The City of Seattle is constructing the new First Hill Streetcar Line. This line will cover 2.5 miles and serve Capitol Hill, First Hill, Yesler Terrace, Central Area, International District and Pioneer Square; improving connections and access to businesses, medical centers and schools. The First Hill Line will have 10 stations, 6 streetcars, and connect with bus lines, Link light rail, commuter rail, ferry and water taxi, and the local bike network.

The First Hill Line is the next step in the Seattle Streetcar project after the successful opening of the South Lake Union Line in 2007. Our goal is to keep you informed on how the construction may impact your travel to and from the First Hill and Cherry Hill campuses. We will keep this blog post updated throughout the project and let you know of any planned traffic detours or lane closures, until the opening of the line in mid-2014.

Here are some useful links to learn more about the First Hill Streetcar Project:

Stay tuned for updates posted here as we keep our patients, visitors and staff informed on the construction progress of the First Hill Streetcar Line. We'll also post relevant updates about impacts to our campuses on Facebook and Twitter.

 

The Journey of A Thousand Miles

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step,” and the same goes for your health. Sometimes the process of improving or maintaining health may seem difficult, if not impossible. It may seem like a journey of more than just a thousand miles even. But keep in mind, there are little things—baby steps—that you can do every day to make that journey to health an achievable and enjoyable one.

The key is to think small and realistically. Ask yourself, what is your overall goal? Do you want to manage diabetes? Do you want to be able to run a 5k? Do you want to quit smoking? Whatever your goal, even if you don’t have a map, it helps to know your destination and have your shoes strapped on before you head out on the journey.

To figure out if you’re ready to take steps towards your health goals:

  • Make a list of pros and cons, such as “pro: eating more vegetables will help me lose weight, con: I don’t know how to cook vegetables that I like."

  • Get a journal or find a friend and walk through all the pros you listed. They don’t just have to be health-related. For instance, will increasing the amount of sleep you get each night help you do better at work?

  • Try to imagine how you will handle the cons that come with change and make a plan. For example, if your goal is to exercise at least thirty minutes a day but you find it difficult to make time, physically block out time on your calendar (at work, on your phone, etc.) If you miss a day, what will you do to make up for it?

When the pros outweigh the cons, you’ll have a better chance at successfully making that change. Just remember that the larger journey is the product of many smaller steps and often some wrong turns or setbacks. Thinking ahead about what you will do when you take a wrong turn and breaking down your goal into small steps will help you achieve the bigger health goals you set for yourself. If you want to cut down on the number of sweets you eat, cutting them out all at once (trying to leap ahead a thousand miles) is going to be much harder than choosing to eat one cookie after dinner instead of five (taking a single step).

Here are some tricks to help take the baby steps that will move you forward on your journey to better health:

5 tips for a more comfortable allergy season

 Here are five things you should know to help you have a more comfortable allergy season:

Spring cleansing - Part 2

 (Read part 1 of this ‘Spring Cleanse' series here for more on how many calories you actually need, how to track your intake, and what you need to know about fluids.)

The Cleanse…

There are thousands of books out there, everything from an intensive fasting period to a detailed 21+ day program. Pick one that seems like it would yield the highest degree of success for you, but remember these basic parameters of all detoxes and cleanses:

  • Don’t go less than 1200 calories a day. (Doing so stimulates a decrease in your metabolism, which unfortunately won’t immediately correct once the cleanse is completed. )
  • Don’t expect more than 2 pounds of weight loss per week. If you see this on the scale, it means you are losing lean muscle mass (not a brilliant idea since this tissue is most metabolically active = your best friend in the battle of the bulge) or you are under-hydrated. The goal is gradual fat loss, hydration maintenance, and preservation of lean muscle mass if you want your results to last.
  • Avoid junk (caffeine, alcohol, sodium, artificial sweeteners, refined sugars and refined grains). You want to get the biggest bang for your caloric buck, so opt for whole grains, fruits and vegetables rather than processed food.
  • Assess your tendency for withdrawal. This can be from caffeine, alcohol, salt, refined grains/sugars, or simply the habit of heading for frozen yogurt on weekends.

What you should know about….

  • Caffeine:

Neuromodulation device success for patients with fecal incontinence

The Swedish Colon and Rectal Clinic successfully treated its first two patients with Medtronic’s InterStim neuromodulation device for fecal incontinence. Both patients have already been seen in follow up with an amazing and immediate improvement. One patient in particular was previously afraid to leave the house and had daily leakage. She is thrilled with the positive outcome. Since placement of the first-stage device four days ago, she has had no leakage.

The technology involves placing a permanent generator attached to electrical wires, which are positioned near sacral nerves in the lower back. The procedure requires two stages. First the wires are placed and attached to a temporary, external test generator. Once the desired positive effect is confirmed, the permanent generator is placed.

This is a new day for these patients. There are millions of patients who could potentially be helped with this new technology. Up until now ...

Spring cleansing - Part 1

Spring is finally here! Finally, the opportunity to congratulate Seattle for behaving according to season, and enjoy tulips that Dougie in the spring breeze, and the first panic wave reminds you that you’ve got only a few weeks before bikini season (you get the point). Your innocent neurons automatically fire “detox diet’ and “cleanse”. Well, let me warn you that I am not a fan of the “drink maple syrup and eat lemon wedges” diet. Not because nutritionally they are a joke, but if you follow one, you morph into a mix of Tasmanian devil and Garfield, a creature with a short temper, little patience, an appetite with no boundaries, yet profound laziness.

Instead, how about something realistic with sustainable results? Here are tips to clean up your eating behaviors and make sure you are on track to tackle your goals.

Track Your Intake:

Do you know how much calories, fat, sugar, fiber, fluids, etc. you are concerned about, that you are consuming these days? This is where you need to start...

There Will Be Blood…Donors

Every two seconds in the United States, someone requires a blood transfusion. That means over 5 million Americans will need blood every year. Unfortunately blood can only come from volunteer donors and only 3% of eligible donors donate every year.

What’s the good news? Over 9 million Americans donate blood every year and help save countless lives. Many people don’t donate blood simply because they don’t know where or how to do so. Are you one of them? Here are the who’s, what’s, where’s and when’s of blood donation.

Who?

You are likely eligible to donate blood if you are:

  • In good health,
  • Over 17 years old, and
  • Weigh more than 110 pounds.

Type O is the most commonly needed blood type and O negative-type blood is “universal” meaning most bodies will accept it instead of fighting it off like they would a germ or infection. If you have Type O blood, especially Type O negative, you are an ideal donor.

What?

Giving blood is safe, sterile and simple and can be done in about an hour.

When you show up to donate, you will:

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