Those of us specializing in palliative care strive to manage symptoms and support patients and their loved ones on how to live with and manage chronic disease. We integrate the psychological, social, and spiritual aspects of care along with providing relief from pain and other distressing symptoms. The focus of care is tailored to support each unique individual with the complex questions and scenarios arising from a chronic condition and are provided in an outpatient setting.
Is palliative care right for you, someone you love, or a patient you are treating? Here are some questions to think about:
On August 23 the Swedish Multiple Sclerosis Center hosted a summer barbeque in honor of the Young Adults with MS Support Group. With nearly 140 patients, family members, friends, and MS Center staff in attendance, the luncheon occupied the clinic’s lounge, wellness studio, and exterior terrace. Speeches were given by Dr. James Bowen, Medical Director and Neurologist at the MS Center as well as members of the Young Adults with MS Support Group. Patients and visitors had the opportunity to socialize and connect with others in the MS community while enjoying appetizers, burgers, hot dogs, and dessert.
Having grown from five individuals to over 20, the support group, led by Janice Huertas, MS Center Medical Assistant, is held every 3rd Thursday of the month, 6:30-8:30 PM at the Swedish MS Center. The support group welcomes those diagnosed with MS between the ages of 20-45 and any supporting family or friends. Members dine together at local restaurants, listen to guest speakers, and enjoy games and activities at the MS Center. Whether the sessions are taking your mind off of the hardships of the disease or allowing everyone to openly discuss ....
Both of my grandmothers died from cancer. Grandma S. died of stomach cancer when I was in college. As far as I know, she was never told that her cancer had recurred after surgery. Her second husband and family wanted it that way. “Knowing that she has cancer will devastate her, let her have her hope,” we were told. When my cousins and I visited, we were under strict orders to not ask too many questions about her “gall stone” problems. She knew though. You could see it in Grandma’s eyes. But the web that had been woven kept her from being able to grieve and gave no opportunity for good byes. As she slipped away she became withdrawn and depressed.
Grandma B. was diagnosed with an aggressive lymphoma when I was just out of medical school and in my training. She was fully informed by her doctors. She had opportunity to seek second opinions. She conferenced with her children. When she chose to not leave her little ranch valley in Idaho for desperate treatments far from home, and to die in her own home, her family rallied around her in support. For six weeks, she narrated her life history, wrapping up a legacy of lasting value for her family. She was the recipient of an outpouring of love from her community and she died fulfilled, with a smile of satisfaction on her face.
The science and art of medicine are ...
Why is it important to talk with my child?
Talking to your child is an important first step in helping them understand and process any life event and especially a large scale traumatic event. Your child may have already heard about the event through school, social media, friends or other sources. Taking the initiative to talk with them allows you the opportunity to clarify the facts, answer questions and provides them a chance to share their own feelings.
What should I tell my child?
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD): Do you know what it is? Do you know what symptoms people suffer from? Do you know that 1.4 million Americans have IBD, and that it can affect both children and adults alike? The gastroenterology team at Swedish takes care of both children and adults who suffer with this chronic, disease of the gastrointestinal tract.
As the pediatric gastroenterology nurse who works intimately with the pediatric IBD patients at Swedish, I know all too well that many can suffer with the “ups and downs” of this sometimes debilitating disease. Often, I tend to hear from kids when they are “down”, but my favorite time to hear from them is when they are excited about upcoming special events like the “Take Steps” walk, or Camp Oasis (a camp just for kids with IBD), both events sponsored by the CCFA. It’s often at these events, that children first say that they start to feel “normal”.
This year, we want to invite you to ...
Each year, the Swedish Cancer Institute (SCI) partners with local and national organizations in an effort to help spread awareness of cancer, associated treatments, and resources available in our communities.
Summer 2014 is no different. We’ve signed on to take part in more events than ever before—and we want you to join us! As an active patient, survivor, family member, friend or advocate, your voice and participation matter.
American Cancer Society Relay for Life
These overnight community fundraising walks help raise money to fund cancer research, education, and support services like Hope Lodge®, Road to Recovery®, Look Good, Feel Better®, and Reach to Recovery®, all American Cancer Society-run programs. The Swedish Cancer Institute patients gain access to these programs throughout the Swedish network. There are several Relay for Life events going on in the Puget Sound. The Swedish Cancer Institute is taking part in: