2014

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What to do if your child swallows something

November 19, 2014
With the holiday season fast approaching, the environments around us are about to change. Glitter, lights, tinsel, ornaments, decorations, new toys and many other exciting trimmings are bound to be a part of daily life for a while. It’s no doubt that kiddos will be curious about all of this new shiny stuff!

Many kids will likely explore these things with their mouths. Exploring the world by mouth is a normal part of development for babies, but what should you do if your baby or child swallows an object? The answer: stay calm and think! There are some situations in which your child will require the help of a doctor, however many situations can be managed from home. Many items are small enough to pass through the digestive tract and out in a bowel movement, and in this instance your child will likely have no symptoms.

Here are the red flags to look for if your child swallows a foreign object. If your child exhibits any of these symptoms, seek medical help.

Ebola preparedness continues in Washington hospitals

November 17, 2014
Contacts: Joby Winans, DOH Communications Office (360) 236-4077
Clay Holtzman, Swedish Media Relations (206) 386-2748

OLYMPIA – Preparations for identifying, isolating, evaluating and treating patients with suspected or confirmed Ebola virus disease in Washington continues, even though the likelihood of the virus appearing in the state is still considered low.

Using guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hospitals throughout the state are making plans to rapidly identify, isolate and safely evaluate people with suspected Ebola.

In addition to standard preparation for screening and identification, eight hospitals have committed to working towards the level of preparation that is required for the ongoing care and treatment of a patient with Ebola, as needed. CHI Franciscan Health (Harrison Medical Center – Bremerton campus), MultiCare Tacoma General Hospital, Providence Regional Medical Center Everett, Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center and Children’s Hospital in Spokane, Seattle Children’s Hospital, Swedish Medical Center (Issaquah), Virginia Mason Hospital, and UW Medicine (Harborview Medical Center, UW Medical Center, Valley Medical Center) are taking additional steps in their preparedness activities to provide that care.

Swedish partners with DOH to support regional Ebola preparedness

November 17, 2014

Today, the Department of Health (DOH) announced that eight Washington hospitals have agreed to receive and provide ongoing care for Ebola patients. Swedish Issaquah is one of the eight hospitals.

Although all Swedish hospitals and clinics are preparing to identify and triage a patient presenting with symptoms of Ebola, Swedish Issaquah was selected for the dedicated inpatient unit because the hospital has the best combination of needed isolation space and technology, and because it serves a geographic population the DOH needed to have served.

It is important to remember that there are no confirmed cases of Ebola in Washington state, and that an outbreak is very unlikely to occur here.

At Swedish Issaquah ....

Medical Mission in Ethiopia: Week 7

November 16, 2014
Sunday, November 16, 2014

It is 05:30 in the morning.  I have been awake since 02:30am when Josh walked into our room, febrile and not feeling well.  He was ready for his next dose of Tylenol.  Yesterday he had his second febrile episode in as many weeks.  I freaked out (a little) and decided to bring him in to be tested for malaria.   For our $8.00 we were seen by the doctor in the urgent care clinic of the small hospital up the street, had labs drawn (CBC, malaria blood smear, typhus serum test), and were prescribed antibiotics for bacterial pharyngitis, probably strep throat.

But I digress. ...

A blood test to diagnose depression

November 13, 2014
Currently the standard protocol for diagnosing depression involves asking a patient a series of questions or administering a self-report questionnaire about a patient’s mood, energy level, interest and engagement in activities, appetite, sleep, and so on.  A patient’s responses as well as observations of mood and behavior would then be used as an indicator for depression.  Depression is often difficult to diagnose because diagnosis is dependent on patients being truthful in reporting symptoms and being clear in their description of symptoms. 
 
Researchers at Northwestern University (Redei et al., 2014) have developed a blood test that ...

On breastfeeding & breast cancer survivors

November 12, 2014

When I was a surgical resident, I donated 150 ounces of breastmilk to a woman I’d never met, a woman who had undergone a bilateral mastectomy for cancer. It was an easy decision – I had more than I could use, she had none that she could provide. This experience became a major one in my decision to specialize in breast surgery. The dichotomy of breasts fascinated me. Breasts are highly sexualized, yet the source of comfort and food to babies. Breasts can make life-sustaining milk, and they can develop a cancer in up to 1 in 8 women that can be life-threatening. It is no wonder that society’s relationship with breasts and breastfeeding is complicated.

I have had many patients (too many) in my practice who were young and pre-childbearing, or even pregnant or breastfeeding at the time of diagnosis. Most experience ...

The difference between service dogs and therapy dogs

November 11, 2014
A service dog is an assistance dog that has been specially trained to help someone who has a disability. Service dogs work only with one owner/handler. They are trained for the person’s specific needs. For example, an owner/handler may have mobility limitations, hearing loss or deafness, visual impairment, or autism.

A service dog may be provided to the owner/handler at no cost. In some cases, the owner/handler may purchase the dog.

Some service dogs wear a vest, working harness or a bandana to signify that they are trained. However, the Americans with Disabilities Act does not require them to do so. The ADA covers public access for service dogs ...

Celebrating Lung Cancer Awareness Month in a BIG Way!

November 11, 2014

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths for both men and women in our country and this far exceeds those deaths for breast, colon, prostate, and pancreatic cancers, combined.  85% to 90% of the people diagnosed with lung cancer are current or former smokers; the risk of lung cancer is directly related to tobacco smoke exposure (smoking).  Until recently, there was not a well-established means for detecting lung cancer and survival rates were dismal.

What you should know about dealing with migraines

November 10, 2014
Many people think that a migraine is “just a bad headache.” A migraine is a complex neurological disorder caused by abnormal brain biochemistry. A headache is just one of many symptoms that occur with a migraine. Other symptoms can include nausea, vomiting, light sensitivity, noise sensitivity, vision changes, numbness, tingling, speech changes, dizziness, and many more. In the past, migraines were thought to be a vascular disorder. It is now believed that changes in blood vessels may play a role in migraines but the pathophysiology of a migraine is much more complex than that, involving neurotransmitters and other chemicals in the brain, electrical impulses, inflammation and the trigeminal nerve.

There are many treatment options for migraines. Acute treatments are ones that are geared at taking the migraine away when it occurs. While over the counter medications such as Excedrin Migraine or Ibuprofen can work well for some people, many people with migraines need sp...

Swedish Edmonds recognized with 3rd consecutive 'A' grade for patient safety

November 10, 2014

Edmonds, Wash. — November 7, 2014 — Swedish Edmonds was honored for the third consecutive time with an ‘A’ grade in the Fall 2014 update to the national Hospital Safety Score, which rates how well hospitals protect patients from accidents, errors, injuries and infections. The Hospital Safety Score is compiled under the guidance of the nation’s leading experts on patient safety and is administered by The Leapfrog Group (Leapfrog), an independent industry watchdog. The first and only hospital safety rating to be analyzed in the peer-reviewed Journal of Patient Safety, the Score is designed to give the public information they can use to protect themselves and their families.

“We are pleased to receive this recognition on behalf of all our caregivers at Swedish Edmonds and the community we serve,” said David Jaffe, chief executive at Swedish Edmonds. “Patient safety and quality of care are top priorities at the hospital, and we are very gratified to see that our hard work is making a measurable difference.”