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From the Physician’s Desk … Weekly Blog!

Don’t forget to visit … www.LegacyEducators.org  and click on “Cancer Information”

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At the end of this blog today, you will now know how to respond to 3 very common emergencies:

  1. Heart Attack (Myocardial Infarction – MI) – [http://www.legacyeducators.org/2012-11-23-23-49-54.html ]
  2. Stroke [http://www.legacyeducators.org/2012-11-23-23-49-54.html ]
  3. Choking (read below…)

Knowing how to respond to these emergencies BEFORE an incident occurs is BEST! In the moment, you will NOT have time to look it up on the internet. Take a few minutes to review all 3 emergencies! (at least watch the videos ;))

  • choking-first-aidDuring the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year season, most folks new hobby becomes eating! Good home cooked meals, prepared with love…cannot be beat! Well, until the New Year’s resolution kicks in, eating is a favorite past time!
  • Since eating occurs in social gathering, the “manners” of not eating while your mouth is full, tend to be disregarded. Choking can occur at anytime to anyone. Be on the lookout and be ready to help someone…or yourself!

Do you know the recommendation on how many time to chew before swallowing?

Though the number is often stated to be 32 times – only swallow food you have chewed enough so it becomes a paste. If you can still feel pieces of food, chew it a little more!

How to save yourself if you are choking

 

How to save others who are choking

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Remember …

Ipsa Scientia Potestas est    ———  Knowledge itself is power!

Don’t forget to visit my website … www.LegacyEducators.org 

Your Family Friendly Doc … Dr McGann!  

See you next week…

From the Physician’s Desk … Weekly Blog!

Don’t forget to visit … www.LegacyEducators.org  and click on “Cancer Information”

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STROKE

It is a busy time of the year and, undoubtedly, many of you will be traveling or around a lot of family members. Keep an eye out for signs and symptoms of Stroke. Stroke does not only affect the elderly population. In reality, stroke can happen to anyone, at any age, and at any time. Watch the 2 videos below for a quick review.

Do you  know the warning signs and symptoms of Stroke?  If you are experiencing the following (or see someone experiencing/having these symptoms) call 9-1-1 immediately! To identify the signs and symptoms – Think F.A.S.T!!  

- Face Drooping Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile.

Arm Weakness Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

Speech Difficulty Is speech slurred, are they unable to speak, or are they hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, like “the sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?

Time to call 9-1-1 If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately.

stroke

Beyond F.A.S.T. – Other Symptoms You Should Know

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of the leg
  • Sudden confusion or trouble understanding
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes 
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
  • Sudden severe headache with no known cause

Immediately call 9-1-1 or the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) number so an ambulance can be sent.  Also, check the time so you’ll know when the first symptoms appeared. A clot-busting drug called tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) may improve the chances of getting better but only if you get them help right away.

A TIA or transient ischemic attack is a “warning stroke” or “mini-stroke” that produces stroke-like symptoms. TIA symptoms usually only last a few minutes but, if left untreated, people who have TIAs have a high risk of stroke. Recognizing and treating TIAs can reduce the risk of a major stroke.

The above information brought to you from the American Heart Association.

Read more at the National Stroke Association website

What is a Stroke? Watch below…

What can you do? 80% of stroke is preventable…

From the Physician’s Desk … Weekly Blog!

Don’t forget to visit … www.LegacyEducators.org  and click on “Cancer Information”

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 HEART ATTACK (Myocardial Infarction [MI])

During the end of year holiday season, visits to the Emergency Department (ED) increases dramatically! Why? Overeating is quite common, as many tend to share in the festivities with the breaking of bread (pies, cakes, high calorie drinks, 3-4 servings/helpings at every meal [because home cooked meal is delicious!], etc.,). Overeating, can lead to indigestion, chest discomfort and/or pain. Is it a heart attack?

heart attackA heart attack can occur at any time, any season, any place. It may be experienced by you, a love one, a colleague while at work, or even a stranger while traveling. Knowing the signs and symptoms of a heart attack and what to do is essential information that everyone should know.

Hollywood does a great job of simulating the worse case scenarios, but it is important that you know that a heart attack does not always manifest itself by someone clutching at their chest and gasping for air. The symptoms of a heart attack can vary from person to person and may be mild in some cases, such that some people are surprise to learn that they had a heart attack. Also, if you suffered a heart attack before, your symptoms may be different if you experience another one.

MYTH: Heart attack only occur in old people, like my grandparents.

FACT: Heart attack age range can occur in the 30’s (special cases, even younger), and is based on lifestyle induced risk factors. With an increase in obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol (common risk factors), heart attack in the 40’s – 50’s is, unfortunately, not a rare occurrence as in decades past!

90% of heart attack patients displays a combination of the following common signs and symptoms:

  • heart attackbExperience of Chest discomfort or pain to left side (over the heart), or center of the chest. The discomfort usually lasts for more than a few minutes or comes and goes. It has been described as a pressure, fullness, squeezing, or pain that can be mild or severe. The feeling can be compared to indigestion or heartburn.
  • Shortness of breath may sometimes be the only symptom, or it may accompany the chest pain or discomfort. It usually occurs while doing little activity or even at rest.
  • Pain in the left arm or both arms, shoulders, jaw, neck, back or center of the chest/mid abdomen may also occur. Some patients report breaking out in cold sweats, nausea and vomiting, sudden dizziness or lightheadedness, or feeling unusually tired.
  • The more signs and symptoms you have, the more likely that you may be experiencing a heart attack.
  • Heart attack can start slowly (hours, days, or weeks) and cause only discomfort or it can be sudden and more intense. Even more complicating, is that the symptoms can come and go over a few hours.

The symptoms described above may not occur or be very mild if diabetic or a woman! 

SO WHAT TO DO?

  • SAVE A LIFE … call 9-1-1! Not the time to be embarrass. Let the professionals at Emergency Department determine it is indeed a heart attack or just bad indigestion.
  • DO NOT DRIVE! An ambulance is the safest way to get to the hospital. Not only is it safe, they may be able to give lifesaving care, if needed and they are usually received faster at the hospital too.
  • If not allergic to Aspirin, it may be advised to crush or chew an aspirin, as this has been shown to be lifesaving!
  • Do not delay calling 9-1-1 to call family member, take an aspirin or anything else you may deem important. When life is in the balance – every minute counts

heart-attack-3-300pxRegardless of whether you are alone or in the presence of others – the very first thing to do is to call for emergency medical help. You need specialised treatment to be delivered to you as quickly as possible in order to save your heart muscles. If you are alone when a heart attack occurs, stop whatever you’re doing, proceed to a safe place to rest and call for medical help. For example, if you’re driving, first pull to the side of the road and call for help! For more information visit the American Heart Association website.

 

ARE YOU AT RISK? Complete the heart attack risk assessment HERE!

BASICS OF HEART ATTACK

RAW WWE – Jerry Lawler

UNTOLD STORIES OF THE ER

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Remember …

Ipsa Scientia Potestas est    ———  Knowledge itself is power!

Don’t forget to visit my website … www.LegacyEducators.org 

Your Family Friendly Doc … Dr McGann!  

See you next week…

From the Physician’s Desk … Weekly Blog!

Don’t forget to visit … www.LegacyEducators.org  and click on “Cancer Information”

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Thanksgiving is here…yeah!  For some its about the food, for others its about family and for some its about the shopping afterwards or football game. The tradition of asking everyone to name 2-3 christmas-vs-thanksgivingthings they are thankful for at the dinner table, seem to have fallen by the way side. Worse yet, when asked what they are grateful for, many seem to stumble about what to say. The horror!

Learning to be grateful, can start by looking at your life, where you are now, where you have been, the things you overcame this year, the things you were allowed to do this year, etc., See video below for motivation.  A varied sample of what I am GRATEFUL for include:

  • Waking up this morning – I recently heard of someone in my age group, who came home tired from work. Went upstairs to take a nap before dinner and just never woke up…dying in her sleep.
  • (What I think are…) My ugly toes – I recently did a presentation on healthcare cultural competence in taking care of disabled veterans. There are many wounded warriors who are able to function with the assistance of prosthesis…what do I have to complain about?thankful-printable
  • My truck – I grew up in the islands and walking over a mile to catch the bus to school was the norm. A sturdy vehicle that can handle well in the rain and snow, is indeed a blessing!
  • Relationship with my Mom and Dad – a miracle, but I think they have finally come around to realize I am an adult (smile). Our relationship and understanding have grown in leaps and bounds over the past decade.
  • Ability to give – though it is often said it is better to give than to receive, many have the desire to give, but is not able to do so. I thoroughly enjoy being a blessing to others.
  • Travel opportunity – visiting 6 international countries this year, mostly for work, but able to take a few vacation days to enjoy the area too. WOW, absolutely awesome!

What are you grateful for? Still not sure? See the video below.

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Remember …

Ipsa Scientia Potestas est    ———  Knowledge itself is power!

Don’t forget to visit my website … www.LegacyEducators.org 

Your Family Friendly Doc … Dr McGann!  

See you next week…

From the Physician’s Desk … Weekly Blog!

Don’t forget to visit … www.LegacyEducators.org  and click on “Cancer Information”

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winter-exercise

There is Dedication and then there is this….??

It is getting really cold outside and I absolutely love it! Growing up in the Caribbean islands there are only 2 seasons – summer and hurricane season…giggles. However, for me, there is nothing like experiencing the 4 seasons…it always brings me wonder and joy! The beauty of autumn, the wonder in a snowflake, the life in spring…and the beautiful long days of summer!

Unfortunately, millions of people are usually depressed, disappointed, or in despair during the holiday season. Either because it reminds them of a loved ones’ death, seemingly having no love  in their lives, being lonely and/or alone, or due to seasonal depression.  Season Affect Disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that is related to changes in seasons, usually in the winter. It is often referred to as “The Winter Blues” or “Seasonal Depression”. See video below to learn about treatment approaches for SAD.

SADSmile at someone today, give someone a hug if the opportunity arises (a friend, child, parents, etc.,). As my God-father told me…. “Camille, your smile is a blessing. You just don’t know, but your smile and warmth may be the only genuine greeting someone may see or have that day, or in weeks!”  Hard to believe ugh?! Sad, but you can help make a change…

There are some things that a tweet, text, Instagram or email cannot do (too impersonal). Break the media-only-relationship chain.  Make an effort to reach out to someone today, this month, or for the season. If you cannot be there in person, pick up the phone and give a call. You never know! You may be someone’s sunshine during a gloomy situation!

Sending Hugs and Sunshine your way!

 

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Remember …

Ipsa Scientia Potestas est    ———  Knowledge itself is power!

Don’t forget to visit my website … www.LegacyEducators.org 

Your Family Friendly Doc … Dr McGann!  

See you next week…

From the Physician’s Desk … Weekly Blog!

Don’t forget to visit … www.LegacyEducators.org  and click on “Cancer Information”

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Recently, I was asked to speak on Health Care Disparities. No problem. As a “triple minority” I stand ready to assist in this area whenever called upon (triple = immigrant, black, female). However, the audience interest lies in the healthcare disparities as it relates to the disabled. Oh?! That is different. Truth be told, I really never thought of the disabled as a “diverse” population per say, or one with a different culture. Have you? I had the privilege of treating physically and mentally challenged patients for cancer, but had no difference in treatment (adjusted to minor requirements)….so, I did not take into account Healthcare Disparity for this minority group. Not blinded to the possibility…just not confronted with it.

disabled vet

Living above limitations!

Diversity at its roots simply means “differences”, and an attempt to understand and incorporate these difference in different facets of life, leads to “cultural awareness and/or cultural competency.” Of course, this should be applied to any place of business (for profit companies, not-for profit business, hospitals, etc.,)

Diversity, Health disparity and cultural awareness has a long history of association with under-served population, minorities, race, gender, religion, etc.,

Disabled diversityThere is a wide array of diversity among the disabled, as well as different types of disabilities, as well as different degrees of disabilities. There appears to be 3 main disability groupings: Genetics (be it from childhood or adulthood), Accident caused (civilians) and the Disabled Veterans. It was surprising to learn that many who are disabled do not necessarily identify with with each other (disabled), but may choose to identify with other parts of their culture.

We are forever grateful to our Veterans!

Disability Identity defined – “The population of people who experience disability is extraordinarily diverse and, therefore, the idea of a common disability identity isolates disability artificially from intersecting identities related to race, gender, and other axes of social significance” from Gill C, Cross W (2010). Disability Identity and Racial-Cultural Identity development: Points of Convergence, Divergence and Interplay. Rehabilitation Science and Practice

diversityThere is no simple relationship between race and disability, gender and disability, religion and disability, etc., So, what should a healthcare provider take into consideration when addressing the needs of a 30 year old, Hispanic female, left below the knee amputee, veteran? Is there a difference? Should there be a difference?

How do you relate to people with disabilities? Take a look at the videos below and see if any of the information rings true…for you.

See Me….talk to me! 

No excuses!

Disability Attitudes

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Remember …

Ipsa Scientia Potestas est    ———  Knowledge itself is power!

Don’t forget to visit my website … www.LegacyEducators.org 

Your Family Friendly Doc … Dr McGann!  

See you next week…

A Right To Die??

From the Physician’s Desk … Weekly Blog!

Don’t forget to visit … www.LegacyEducators.org  and click on “Cancer Information”

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As a physician, I take the Hippocratic Oath seriously – First Do No Harm.  So, without thinking about it, I sometime assume that it is automatic that patients will not harm themselves either. I am proven wrong time and time again….and it saddens my heart. I recently blogged about Robin William when he unfortunately committed suicide…he was loved by many and I am a great admirer of his work.

A recent headline caught my attention, “29-year-old Newlywed with Brain Cancer, Brittany Maynard, writes own obituary before taking her life on Sat.”  WHAT?? Did I read that correctly?  (read more HERE ) This brought more questions to the forefront that is suitable for “active debate/discussion?”

The Beautiful Brittany

The Beautiful Brittany

 

  • Is Robin William’s case of suicide any different from Brittany Maynard’s?
  • What lesson is there for our community from both cases?
  • Do parents discuss this kind of event with their children? Should they?
  • How does this affect children diagnosed with Cancer? (normal age for pediatric cancer is usually 2-21 – so conversely, if they are old enough to vote or drive or be independent from their parents by court, is there provision for such a decision if terminally ill also?)

I do not believe in suicide.  But as proven here … this is made a personal decision based on situation…and residence. On immediate survey of colleagues sitting close by at a conference, the responses were very diverse (great conversations…).

What I do believe in, is the frank discussion of life and death with everyone. Yes, everyone. Seize the opportunity when the gold fish dies, when the family dog dies, when grandparents dies…death is a part of life. As Mr. Anonymous states, “Being born is a death sentence. After birth, you are slowly dying…each…and every…day.”  Should a person  be able to choose how and when to die if terminally ill? The debate and controversy continues…

“I do not fear death. I had been dead for billions and billions of years before I was born, and had not suffered the slightest inconvenience from it.”
― Mark Twain

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Remember …

Ipsa Scientia Potestas est    ———  Knowledge itself is power!

Don’t forget to visit my website … www.LegacyEducators.org 

Your Family Friendly Doc … Dr McGann!  

See you next week…

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