March 2012
Blog

March 2012 posts

Swedish Heart & Vascular Institute Electrophysiologist Interviewed for KING 5 TV Story on LifeVest

SEATTLE, March 30, 2012 - Seattle NBC affiliate KING Television (Channel 5) aired a story during their 5 p.m. PT newscast tonight about a relatively new, FDA-approved medical device called LifeVest ®. The wearable defibrillator is a treatment option for sudden cardiac arrest that offers patients advanced protection and monitoring as well as improved quality of life.

LifeVest is the first wearable defibrillator. Unlike an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD), the LifeVest is worn outside the body rather than implanted in the chest. This device continuously monitors the patient's heart with dry, non-adhesive sensing electrodes to detect life-threatening abnormal heart rhythms. If a life-threatening rhythm is detected, the device alerts the patient prior to delivering a treatment shock, and thus allows a conscious patient to delay the treatment shock. If the patient becomes unconscious, the device releases a Blue™ gel over the therapy electrodes and delivers an electrical shock to restore normal rhythm.

Happy Doctors' Day, and thank you to all doctors!

Doctors' Day was officially designated as a national day of recognition in 1990 to honor our physicians.  We thank the members of our talented medical staff for their compassionate care of patients and their enthusiastic pursuit of safety, quality and the highest standards in the delivery of medical care.

I want to thank all of our doctors for what they do, and give special thanks to those who are blogging and providing information online.

 

 

Here are some of my personal favorite videos by our physicians from our YouTube channel:

 

 

And of course, the physicians who participate in our livestreams are pretty incredible as well:

 

I've also captured a few tweets and Facebook posts from people who wanted to thank our doctors - see below, and if you want to share any, comment here or on Facebook, and we'll share them with our amazing doctors!

Prostate Cancer Screening

This week a large European consortium updated the data on a huge study on prostate cancer screening. The study included over 160,000 men in eight European countries followed for an average of 11 years. The men were randomly assigned to prostate cancer screening with the PSA blood test or no screening. The primary endpoint of the study was death from prostate cancer. The current report in the New England Journal of Medicine gave an additional two years of follow-up data over the prior reports.

As expected with longer follow-up, the benefits from screening have become more clear. The study now shows a 29% decrease in the number of men dying from prostate cancer in the screened group. This confirms the expected benefit for early detection.

This publication comes at a time of great controversy regarding prostate cancer screening here in the United States...

Swedish Uses Colon Cancer Live Stream to Fight Disease; Physicians will Respond on Camera to Questions During Live Streamed Colonoscopy on March 28

SEATTLE, March 27, 2012 – Colorectal cancer doesn’t broadcast its presence until it’s too late. Swedish Health Services hopes to change that by getting the word out about safe and effective prevention options.

On Wednesday, March 28, 2012 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. (PST), Swedish physicians and staff will host its first-ever online chat and video stream of a colonoscopy procedure. The stream will be made available online at www.swedish.org/colonlive.

In the United States today, colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths for both men and women. It is estimated that 51,000 people will die of the disease this year and 143,000 new cases will be diagnosed.

Celebrate Child Life Month – What is a Child Life Specialist?

Child Life Specialists are teachers, support, advocates, therapeutic touch, art buddies, child development specialists, story tellers, positive influences, toy drive organizers, de-coders of medical language, empathizers, distraction providers, cartoon experts, volunteer managers and skilled listeners.

Child Life Specialists aim to reduce any negative effects of hospitalization on children and their families by reducing stress and anxiety. When I asked one of Swedish's child life specialists about their work, she said they feel very lucky to work in a healthcare system that cares so well for our young patients and families.

To help illustrate the work of Child Life Specialists, enjoy this poem (by Steve Slowinski).

What I’m not:

A nurse.
A doctor.
A social worker.

A “Keeper of the Toys.”
A magical “make-this-kid-not-cry” person.
Only someone to play with the kids.

I’m not superfluous.

What I am:

I am a teacher,
A helping hand,
A support,
An advocate,
An active listener,
A therapeutic touch,
And a child development specialist
Every.
Single.
Day.

I am an OR prep-er,
An IV teacher,
A de-coder of PICC, VCUG, MRI and NG,
A distraction provider,
An inpatient support,
And a guide and voice for siblings
All in the same day.

I am calm despite cancer, CAT scans, and catheters.
I am strong in the face of syncope, sickle cell, and surgery.
Kids can’t always do these things for themselves.
That’s why I’m here ...

Mercer Island Half Marathon and Colon Cancer Prevention

On Sunday, March 25, 2012, the Mercer Island Rotary Club will be hosting the 40th Annual Mercer Island Half Marathon. Children and adults of all ages participate and we anticipate more of the same this year. In addition to the half marathon race around the Island, there will also be a 10K Run, a 5K Run and Walk and a Kids’ Dash. So anyone can participate!

Swedish and the Swedish Cancer Institute are sponsors of this signature event. We are so excited to be part of this event again. One of the main purposes of the day is to raise awareness of colon cancer prevention.

In addition to the various runs and walks, you can still visit, have fun and maybe learn something new. You can also visit the “COLOSSAL COLON”! For the first time you get to walk through the colon and see what the inside looks like! Just don’t get lost in there. Don’t worry, it doesn’t smell!

This year will be particularly special as the 40th anniversary run. In honor of the anniversary, the Mercer Island Rotary Club has collected the “40 Faces of Colon Cancer”. This is a terrific idea. It’s a way to make colon cancer personal and real. Patients of all ages, races and backgrounds have agreed to share their personal stories and cancer experiences. Each story is unique as are the individuals with cancer. What they have in common is a passion to raise awareness of colon cancer and the need to get screened.

Colon cancer is unique among cancers in that nearly all can be prevented with appropriate screening.

Swedish Advances the Art and Science of Endoscopy; New Center Now Open on 2 SW at First Hill Campus

SEATTLE, March 21, 2012 – In the closing weeks of 2011, Swedish opened the largest, most advanced endoscopy center in the Pacific Northwest on the First Hill campus in Seattle. The 21,600-square-foot, state-of-the-art unit serves as the procedural space for a broad range of minimally invasive cases performed by gastroenterologists, colo-rectal specialists, thoracic and bariatric surgeons and pulmonologists on patients with a broad range of digestive and respiratory diseases.

“This uniquely designed space offers physicians and surgeons from diverse specialties and practices the opportunity to bring their patients the highest level of care in a collaborative, safe and comfortable environment that is easily accessed, spacious and welcoming,” said Swedish Chief Medical Officer John Vassall, M.D.

The new unit was completed just over a year after Swedish Medical Group formed Swedish Gastroenterology – a new, employed gastroenterology, hepatology and endoscopy service that brought together several local gastroenterologists in one Swedish-based group dedicated to providing patients with the highest level specialty and subspecialty care available. Founded by Drs. Drew Schembre and Jack Brandabur, Swedish Gastroenterology was created to bring ...

Results 1-7 of 26