AuthorDetail
Dana Lewis

Dana Lewis

Digital Media & Internal Communications | Swedish Blog Administrator

Dana Lewis manages the digital/web marketing, social media, and internal communications at Swedish, and also manages the Swedish blog. She writes about innovation and happenings at Swedish and social media in health care. Contact her regarding the blog at Blog@Swedish.org.

Blog Posts by Dana Lewis

Early warning device for heart attacks

The symptoms of a heart attack can vary from person to person, but what if you had an early warning system that would alert you to go to the hospital before the first sign of trouble? Doctors here at Swedish are testing out a new device they hope could do just that.

In early January 2010 Swedish became the first medical center in western Washington to begin participation in the ALERTS Pivotal U.S. Trial for the AngelMed Guardian implantable cardiac monitor and alert system. The system is designed to reduce the time it takes patients to get to an emergency room during an impending heart attack.

The AngelMed Guardian System ® is designed to track significant changes in the heart’s electrical signal and then alert patients to seek medical attention. The objective of the ALERTS Pivotal Study is to provide an assessment of the safety and effectiveness of the AngelMed Guardian System.

“If the Guardian system proves to be effective in the early detection and warning of potentially life-threatening heart conditions, we may be able to shift the paradigm for early treatment at the onset of heart attacks,” said Swedish Heart & Vascular Institute interventional cardiologist Mark Reisman, M.D., principle investigator for this study at Swedish.

According to the American Heart Association, one of every five deaths in the United States is attributable to coronary heart disease. Further, 50 percent of heart-attack fatalities occur within one hour of symptom onset and occur before the patient even reaches the hospital.

Surgical precision and painted pumpkins

Forget 'will it blend' - you should be asking, can my robot paint a pumpkin? (It can!)

Dr. Kristen Austin, OB/GYN (obstetrics and gynecology) physician at Swedish/Issaquah paints a Jack-O-Lantern on a miniature pumpkin using the da Vinci robot to demonstrate how this device gives surgeons greater surgical precision and dexterity over existing approaches.


If you've been wondering what the setup looks like in the OR, here are a few behind the scenes photo from our video shoot:

Medicine comes in many forms

It's a well known fact that animals can reduce stress, lower blood pressure and promote healing. The Swedish/Edmonds Therapy Pups (STP) program, which began in early 2008, has expanded to include more than 10 teams of volunteer handlers and their Pet Partners®. Presently, the teams visit patients on surgery floors, but they can be stopped for a visit any time you see them in the halls. While their primary purpose is to see hospital patients, they often visit patients’ family and friends too – and our staff!

So what do handlers and their therapy pups do during a visit? I asked a few of our teams to share their stories. Also, make sure you watch the ‘dog cam’ below!

How do you find health information online?

Some people prefer to read. Some prefer to listen. And some watch videos.

Based on our YouTube channel, we know that many people find videos to be a helpful resource to learn more about their health, diseases, conditions, treatments, meet their physicians and more.

For example, Dr. Ludlam’s videos on the pituitary gland and some related diseases and conditions are some of our most viewed videos (after the flash mob and robotic videos):

We'd love to hear from you. How do you prefer to get your health information online?

Happy Labor Day (and thank you to our employees)

For those who have the day off today, we hope you enjoy it! While Labor Day is traditionally celebrated as a day off of work for many people, remember that it shouldn’t be a day to forget your health:

Labor Day is also a great day to acknowledge and thank our employees for their tireless work year-round on behalf of our patients. To all of our employees - thank you for all that you do!

New cancer web site

If you haven’t seen it yet, check out our new web site, www.seriouslykickingcancersbutt.com.

Since opening the first cancer-radiation treatment center west of the Mississippi more than 80 years ago, Swedish has helped more people fight cancer than any other provider in the region. Even today, we are committed to ensuring that our local community has access to the most advanced tools and treatments, and the nation's leading experts in cancer care. Click here to learn more about the Swedish Cancer Institute.

You can download a variety of podcasts about cancer by visiting www.swedish.org/cancerpodcasts.

Also, read other blog posts by physicians, nurses, and staff from the Swedish Cancer Institute:

Personalized medicine is the future of healthcare

If you were diagnosed with cancer or another disease, wouldn’t you want your treatment and medicines to be as unique as you are?

This is a growing trend in medicine where the type of treatment a patient gets depends on their DNA.

A few weeks ago, Dr. Hank Kaplan of the Swedish Cancer Institute spoke with KING5 about the I-SPY clinical trial (click here to watch the KING5 story).

The usual treatment for breast cancer may be surgery, followed by chemotherapy, possibly radiation and as a last resort, a clinical trial.

The I-SPY clinical trial turns that thinking upside down by actually extracting DNA from a tumor to figure out which new drug will likely work best, then giving it to the patient first, even before surgery.

"The goal of the I-SPY trial is really to develop a faster and cheaper way to develop new drugs for breast cancer . We're hoping that this is a new paradigm that will work for other kinds of cancer too," said Dr. Kaplan.

Results 29-35 of 42