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Archive for January, 2014

From the Physician Desk … weekly Blog!

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Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are caused by infections that are passed from one person to another during sexual contact.  These infections often do not cause any symptoms.  There are many kinds of STD’s and statistics show that over 50% of sexually active people (cannot limit it to adults anymore..sigh) will have one STD’s at some time in their life.

Did you guess the most common STD? If you guessed HPV, you are correct! Listen Up!

tongue_wartAbout 79 million Americans currently have HPV (Human papillomavirus), which is the most common sexually transmitted disease – and most of them do not know it! There are many “types” of HPV and  HPV is a major cause of cervical cancer.

BUT

HPV AFFECTS MALES TOO AND CAN CAUSE CANCER IN MEN!

Click below to watch video on Men and HPV

JANUARY IS CERVICAL HEALTH AWARENESS MONTH!

  • Encourage women to get their well-woman visit this year
  • HPV can be prevented with the HPV vaccine
  • Talk to parents about how important it is for their pre-teens to get their HPV vaccine (Males & Females)
  • Cervical Cancer can often be prevented with regular screening tests (Pap Test)
  • Let women know that the health care reform law covers well-woman exam visit and cervical cancer screening.

Take care of the females in your life…take care of you!

Press play below to watch video

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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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From the Physicians Desk…weekly Blog!

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Recently, I was asked my opinion about RFID’s being implanted in children. RFID? Last time I thought about such technology, or using it, was for my Long Haired Daschund as a tracking device. I can understand proported benefit for children, for medicine…BUT, what else would it be tracking? RFID is already in use for ID cards (CAC cards for government workers), some drivers license, passport, etc.,

In the palm - RFID vs Grain of Rice - tiny!

In the palm – RFID vs Grain of Rice – tiny!

It would seem to me that implanting a Radio-Frequency Identification device in a human (essentially a GPS) has both positive and negative implications. Sure, having immediate access to a medical record in an emergency situation would be priceless. However, what about a bracelet or dog-tag instead? An implanted RFID microchip would shred the transparent curtain of perceived privacy.

Additionally, an implanted RFID has grave socioeconomic and religious implications. Hhhmmm. Read more about RFIDs HERE. Still thinking… but inclined to an immediate  & emphatic – “NO”…no thank you, please!

What are your thoughts? Would you consider placing a RFID microchip in your child or yourself?

Click below to watch

CNN review…click below to watch

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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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From the Physician’s Desk…weekly Blog!

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Visiting the Doctor’s Office is never an easy thing…especially when you are ill and feel that you require immediate attention.  You are asked to wait…then taken to a room for your vital signs (blood pressure, temperature, pulse).

waiting-doctorsThen you are asked to wait some more…

then someone else may come in and ask and/or verify information about your past history (medications, surgeries, allergies, etc.,).  You are getting more irritated by the minute…watching the clock nervously…because that is NOT what you came in for).  Your irritability is reflected in a higher than normal blood pressure reading (some call this “white-coat” syndrome or white).    You are then placed in a room, asked to put on one of their fancy revealing gowns and asked to wait … again.  Moments later … the Doctor finally walks-in. Amen!

Sounds familiar? Did you know you can cut your wait time in half by being prepared?

Here is how!

Go to a local store and buy a book, if a family, preferably with 5-7 subject tabs. One tab for each family member…or a hard cover book for each family member.   Here is an example:

Scenario: Mrs Mary X is a mother of 2 and started to notice worsening headaches over the past few months, mostly waking her in the morning. She had migraines as a teenager.

NURSE INTAKE NOTES: The information that will ALWAYS be asked…be ready! (information for males included)

Doctor takes a patient's blood pressurePAST MEDICAL HISTORY:

  1. High blood pressure (also known as hypertension/HTN),
  2. Gestational Diabetes (Diabetes during her pregnancy),
  3. GERD = Gastroesophageal reflux disease (heart burn/reflux disease)
  4. High Cholesterol
  5. Migraine
  6. Seasonal Allergies

PAST SURGICAL HISTORY:

  1. Cesarean x 2 (C-section) in 1995 and 1999
  2. Tonsils removed at 6yo
  3. Appendix removed at age 25
  4. Left Breast biopsy (negative) in 2005
  5. (If male, vasectomy included here)

MEDICATIONS: (always keep a copy of this in your purse/wallet)

  1. Lasix for High blood pressure
  2. Nexium for GERD (heart burn/reflux disease)
  3. Lipitor for high cholesterol
  4. Motrin for Headaches, as needed
  5. Zyrtec for allergies, as needed
  6. (If male, and take Viagra or Cialis PLEASE mention here! This medication can interact with heart medications and be VERY dangerous, especially in an ER setting)
  7. List any herbal supplements, or over the counter medications as well (fish oil, flax seed, daily multi-vitamins, etc;)

DRUG ALLERGIES

  1. No known drug allergies (if you do have an allergy, be sure to say what occurs. example: break out in hives, face become swollen, difficulty breathing, etc.,)

FAMILY HISTORY:

  1. Mother has Diabetes, High blood pressure and was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004. She is alive and doing well age 76.
  2. Father had heart disease and prostate cancer. He died from a heart attack in 2008 at age 72
  3. Two younger brothers and 2 older Sisters.  All have high blood pressure. One sister had lymphoma as a teenager, but is doing quite well.

waiting roomOTHER QUESTIONS:

  1. Are you a smoker? If yes, how many packs do you smoke per day
  2. Do you chew tobacco?
  3. Do you drink alcohol? How many beers/glasses per day or week?
  4. Do you use illicit drugs? (Marijuana, cocaine, etc.,)

Questions regarding regular symptoms may also be asked, as it may pertain that specific visit (any shortness of breath while walking, chest pains, change in vision, etc.,)

Having a list, similar to the above, for everyone in your family will go a very long way!

** Please note: Using computers and/or hand held devices do not substitute! With a recent update for my phone, I lost majority of my notes…beware!**

Click below to watch video…VERY informative!

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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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From the Physician’s Desk … Weekly Blog!

It is STILL time to wish all a Happy New Year and all the best for 2014!

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I recently blogged about STRESS and some of its many physical side effects and symptoms.   Well, last year I too fell prey to “high stress” which resulted in a break out of shingles on my forehead/eye lid (if you had chicken pox as a child, you will always be at risk for Shingles). This break out prompted a visit to the Ophthalmologist with extensive evaluation of my eyes given proximity of the Shingles…when it was discovered I had early signs of open angle glaucoma. (read about previous blog about the basic function of the eyes HERE Ok, no problem. As a cancer Doc, I tend to have a “non-chalant” approach to other diagnosis…that is neither here nor there…just sort of is.

So, I started my research on Glaucoma. The medical books were straight forward. This is the cause, this is the treatment, and these are the possible outcomes should you opt for treatment, non-compliant with treatment, or have no treatment. Good got it!

{JANUARY is GLAUCOMA AWARENESS MONTH}

Then I browsed the internet and was amazed on just how scary the information was presented! If I were a lay person, I would be depressed and expect to be blinded in few weeks. Not that it is not serious, but sometimes the delivery could be a bit more tactful … straightforward, but sprinkled with some compassion.

Have you had a full comprehensive eye exam …recently … or ever? Not just visual acuity, but more in-depth requiring dilatation. Talk to your Primary Care doctor … especially if you have never had one and if you are having any changes in vision!  This diagnosis can also go undetected for a while … and though treatment does not cause reversal, it can stabilize symptoms and prevent possible blindness. You should care, because you can prevent blindness.

Press arrow below to watch brief videos on Glaucoma.

En Espanol

You can find more information below

National Glaucoma Awareness Month
Prevent Blindness
211 West Wacker Drive, Suite 1700
Chicago, IL 60606
(800) 331-2020
(312) 363-6001
(312) 363-6052 Fax
http://www.preventblindness.org
Materials available
Contact: PBA Vision Health Resource Center
info@preventblindness.org

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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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From the Physician’s Desk … Weekly Blog!

Don’t forget to visit … www.LegacyEducators.org  and click on “Cancer Information” Thanks in advance for your support!

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HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE! It is that time to make resolutions and by golly, I will do so! My resolutions are actually quite simple this year (well I think so;)

Happy-New-Year-2014

As Physicians, we sometimes tend to neglect our own health while we busy ourselves taking care of others.  I managed to ignore a partially torn rotator cuff injury in addition to a stressful 2013…crazy I know! My resolution is already in effect:

  1. I am now a Pescetarian! Yes, a vegetarian whose diet will allow seafood! (I could not give up sushi!) So no beef, pork, chicken (now that will be difficult – no chicken?). I can live without cows milk and eggs too! I had some really good vegan cheese the other day…yummy! *giggles*
  2. Decrease my stress. Plans are already in motion for that!
  3. Discover/read more on meditation and start low impact exercise more frequently.

That is it for me! How about your resolutions?

Wishing you all the best and GREAT health in 2014!

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Last year I had the opportunity to start reading for pleasure again … oh how sweet it is! In addition to the usual Medical Journals I read, The Four Agreements, The Untethered Soul, Wisdom of the Heart, 20,000 Days and Counting…and uhmm…halfway through another.

The Blog’s title was taken from book gifted to me by a dear colleague, “Wisdom of the Heart” by Alan Cohen.  The following is an excerpt from this book. (The thought alone is a great de-stressor too!)

RESIGNATION FROM ADULTHOOD 

I’ve decided that I’d like to accept the responsibilities of an eight-year-old again.

      I want to go to McDonald’s and think that it’s a four-star restaurant. I want to sail sticks across a fresh mud puddle and make ripples in a pond with rocks. I want to think M&M’s are better than money because you can eat them. I want to lie under a big oak tree and run a lemonade stand with my friends on a hot summer day.

      I want to think the world is fair, that people are honest and good. I want to believe that anything is possible. I want to be oblivious to the complexities of life and be overly excited by the little things. I want to live simply again. I don’t want my days to consist of computer crashes, paperwork, depressing news, more days in the month than money in the bank, doctor bills, gossip, illness, and the loss of loved ones.

      I want to believe in the power of smiles, hugs, kind words, truth, justice, peace, dreams, imagination, human-kind, and making angels in the snow.

      So …  here’s my checkbook, my car keys, my credit card bill, and my 401(k) statements. I’m officially resigning from adulthood. And if you want to discuss this further, you’ll have to catch me first, ‘cause … tag —you’re it!

P.S. I love you.

kids in field

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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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