Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Screening Mammography Recommendations

With the changes and differing views on how often screening mammography should be performed what you need to know is that mammography screening is no longer a cookie cutter approach, but it’s still affordable and there have been no changes in insurance coverage.

The Coverage: In December, congressional passage of a new bill, the Consolidate Care Act of 2015, ensured women’s coverage for mammography will remain the same through 2017. Women 40 years and older enrolled in most insurance plans will continue to be covered every one to two years without copays, coinsurance or deductibles. Click here for the full story according to the US Department of Health & Human Services.

The Changes: While several professional associations still recommend screening mammography for all women beginning at age 40, the American Cancer Society recently updated their screening recommendations. The new recommendations encourage women to make an informed choice, and are as follows:

  • Women should be able to start the screening as early as age 40, if they want to and continue to have annual mammography based on their level of comfort. It’s a good idea to start talking to your health care provider at age 40 about when you should begin screening.
  • Women with an average risk of breast cancer – most women – should begin yearly mammograms at age 45 and should continue annual screening until age 55. But they should have the option to begin annual screening at age 40.
  • At age 55 and over, women should have mammograms every other year – though women do still have the option to continue annual mammograms should they wish.
  • Screening mammograms should continue for as long as a woman is in good health.
According to board certified breast surgeon, Dr. Nova Foster, “it all depends on your personal thoughts and a discussion with your doctor.” But know that if you’re 40 and you decide that screening mammography is for you, it’s very likely that you will be covered.

Refueling Post Workout

During the 30 to 60 minutes after exercise, an athlete’s body is extra primed to restock and repair muscles and other tissues. If an athlete waits much longer to refuel, the body doesn’t absorb key nutrients nearly as easily. This problem can lead to longer recovery times, more training time lost to nagging injuries and illnesses and a lack of motivation.

Refueling Basics

Athletes should aim to consume at least a half gram of carbohydrates per pound of body weight, preferably within the first 30 minutes after exercise. If possible, consuming some protein at the same time makes good sense.

The key is to consume roughly three to four grams of carbohydrates for every one gram of protein. It’s not necessary to heavily focus on a specific recovery ratio or formula. Instead, a simple and effective solution is to eat a balanced meal that includes lean quality protein-rich foods like meat, poultry, fish, eggs, low-fat milk, yogurt, cheese, cooked beans or soy foods like tofu.

If your workout leaves you feeling queasy or without an appetite – refueling with an appropriate sports drink or energy bar is a smart alternative.



Another excellent option is chocolate milk – a “liquid food” that naturally supplies the desired recovery ratio of 4 grams of carbs to 1 gram of protein.


Rehydrating is a key component of the recovery process. When dehydrated, the body has to work much harder to perform critical functions such as bringing nutrients and oxygen to cells and flushing waste products out of muscles. When adequately hydrated, urine will be pale yellow, like the color of lemonade. Darker-colored urine, or if the athlete hasn’t gone for a few hours after exercising, is an indication of the need to drink more. Frequent bathroom breaks and urine that appears clear like water indicate that an athlete is over-hydrated.

Bottom Line

Recovery nutrition involves adequately replacing what the body has lost or used up during exercise. Following these simple guidelines can help improve your performance and keep your body fueled to take on the rest of your day!

This information has been brought to you by Sportsology. Sportsology is the collaboration between certified athletic trainers from Southern Illinois Healthcare’s Rehab Unlimited and Sports Medicine physicians and fellows from SIU School of Medicine.

Questions? Call Sportsology at 877.656.4999 or get more information at

Memorial Hospital of Carbondale earns Baby Friendly

As you enter the Birthing Center at Memorial Hospital of Carbondale these days, the curtains to the nursery are drawn, leading many to ask, “Where are all the babies?”

The babies are with mom.

Memorial Hospital of Carbondale recently completed a two-year journey on a re-birth of its own – designation as a Baby Friendly ® hospital. Gone are the days when the infant is whisked away to the nursery for bathing, shots and hearing tests. Today, babies bond with mom and dad immediately during the “Golden Hour,” the first hour of life, with uninterrupted time and skin-to-skin contact. In fact, many babies begin breastfeeding right after birth. Testing is performed bedside, and fathers often participate in giving baby his/her first bath. Baby and mom room together continuously as a “couplet,” with lots of help from nurses and lactation specialists. This helps builds confidence in learning the baby’s cues, making the transition home much easier.

The World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF launched Baby-Friendly in 1991 to emphasize the health benefits of breast-feeding, which include lower rates of diabetes, childhood leukemia, asthma and other illnesses. Memorial Hospital of Carbondale is one of only seven hospitals in Illinois to earn the accreditation.


Jenny Ting of Carbondale delivered her son, Samuel, two-months ago, shortly after the hospital received Baby Friendly status. Ting has a unique perspective in the “before” and “after” Baby-Friendly journey. She’s a nurse at the Birthing Center and a mom of three. Her first child was born at Memorial Hospital of Carbondale 13 years ago.

“In the past, we took care of mom and baby separately. With Baby Friendly, we’ve transitioned to taking care of the family as a unit; it’s all about the bonding experience. My son was skin-to-skin with me for the first hour, and I got to see him weighed, receive his hearing screen and shots, and get his first bath. It’s so much more intimate. I think what’s important is you are able to be part of your baby’s care, you are taking care of your baby, and the nurses are there to help,” said Ting.

Memorial Hospital of Carbondale provides support to new moms even after they leave the hospital, and provides outpatient lactation consultants 24/7. For moms who are unable to breast-feed or find that it’s not the right fit for them, bottle help is also available. Lactation and support nurses work with each new mom to provide her with the best resources to support her choice.

For a closer look at the “10 Steps to Baby Friendly,” click here.

Just a Simple Breath Hold

A simple breath hold can protect your heart during breast cancer treatment. Radiation therapy is commonly used to reduce the chance of breast cancer recurrence following surgery. However, when the breast cancer is located on the left side, clinicians face a challenge because breast tissue is close to the heart. When the heart is exposed to radiation, it can increase risk for cardiovascular disease.

There is a solution.

At the SIH Cancer Institute, we take care to minimize radiation exposure to the heart using a simple breath-holding technique and some highly sophisticated technology.

The deep inspiration breath-hold technique, (or DIBH) is the latest method in protecting the heart from radiation exposure. “Internal imaging techniques show that when a person takes a deep breath, the heart moves to the right and back, away from the breast tissue,” said Lori Cohen, manager of Radiation Treatment at the SIH Cancer Institute. “When the heart is in that position is when we want to deliver the radiation.”

As one might imagine, it can be difficult to know the heart’s location at any given moment given its central location in the body. But doctors at the SIH Cancer Institute use real-time, 3D surface monitoring of the breast tissue and chest wall, called VisionRT.

This consists of three cameras suspended above the radiation treatment table. With the visual feedback generated from this, clinicians can guide the patient and monitor their position throughout treatment. This allows them to make sure radiation is only delivered when the patient is holding a deep breath (DIBH) and the heart is in a safe position.

As soon as the patient takes a deep breath and their position is perfect, the radiation beam is automatically enabled. When the patient breathes out, the coordinates will change; automatically halting the radiation beam. The above process is then repeated until the full dose of radiation is delivered.

“This revolutionary technique allows us to safely deliver the required radiation to the breast by moving the heart out of the field of treatment,” said Dr. Michael Little, Radiation Oncologist.

The VisionRT cameras only use optical information, so no additional radiation is used during treatment.

Demystifying Interventional Radiology

Interventional Radiologists at Memorial Hospital of Carbondale and Herrin Hospital provide a number of minimally invasive procedures that, over time, have replaced many open procedures. These minimally invasive procedures provide you with surgical solutions that offer less pain, fewer risks and reduced recovery time.

Interventional Radiologists are physicians that use their expertise in diagnostic imaging—such as reading x-rays, ultrasound and other medical images—to accurately guide their medical instruments through tight spaces throughout the body in order to treat a variety of health problems.

An example of one such minimally invasive procedure performed by interventional radiologists is renal cryoablation. If diagnosed with a kidney tumor, our IR physicians would use their skills to guide their instruments to the exact location of the tumor to simply freeze and destroy the tumor tissue. Typically patients have a shorter recovery time and a quicker return to normal activity than with traditional kidney tumor-removal surgery.

An interventional radiologist performed a renal cryoablation procedure on patient Robert Bordenave. Robert underwent his minimally invasive cryoablation procedure at Memorial Hospital of Carbondale and was home by that evening. He was able to get back to his normal routine in just a few days.

“It was a quick outpatient procedure and the biopsy I had of the tumor came back as benign—and that was a big relief.” expressed Robert. “I was very impressed by the interventional radiologist before and after the surgery. Everyone who was on the team was very helpful.”

About his procedure, Robert added, “I would definitely choose this option again. I really think it’s a great procedure and I think others should be aware of this option.”

Interventional radiologists offer a number of other procedures including:

  • Angioplasty
  • Chemoembolization
  • Embolization
  • Kyphoplasty
  • Needle Biopsy
  • Port Placement
  • Stents
  • Tumor Ablation Therapies
  • Uterine Fibroid Embolization
  • Varicose Vein Treatment
  • Venous Access (Port, Hickman, PICC)

To learn more about our Interventional Radiology team and the conditions that they treat, visit Interventional Radiology or talk with your physician about a referral.

Happy PA Week!

According to the American Academy of Physician Assistants, a PA is a medical professional who works as a part of a team with a doctor. A PA performs physical examinations, diagnose and treat illnesses, order and interpret lab test, perform procedures, assist in surgery and provide patient education.

PAs work in physician-PA teams and are educated in a collaborative approach to healthcare, which improves coordination of care and can improve outcomes. PAs extend the care that physicians provide and increase access to care.

Physician Assistant, Rick Kleinschmidt, at Center for Medical Arts in Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery states that,“PAs are important because we help increase access to high quality healthcare for our patients. In this region, it is a much needed role as physician recruitment can be challenging for rural areas. Healthcare access and quality in southern Illinois has improved over the years and PAs have played a vital role in that growth.”

We would like to thank all the Physician Assistants for the dedication and compassion they show their patients today and throughout the year.

WORKcare.ready.well: Tools to Protect Your Employees

The WORKcare.ready.well program functions cohesively for companies and their employees by combining the strength of our occupational health, rehabilitation and wellness programs. Together, WORKcare administers occupational health services, WORKready offers rehabilitation and WORKwell provides employee wellness programs.


Your company’s most valuable assets are your employees— and that’s why WORKcare.ready.well focuses on preventative services and on equipping your company with tools to improve the health and wellness of your employees.

Each employer experiences unique challenges when establishing worksite health programs. Our wellness program is designed to meet the needs of employers of all sizes while emphasizing the value of a healthy worksite culture.

Although we focus our attention on injury prevention, in the event of a worksite injury our team works collaboratively across WORKcare, WORKready and WORKwell, providing injury navigation management while assessing and treating your injured worker—getting workers back to work as soon as possible.

For more information or resources including a blog with articles on the challenges of managing today’s workplace environment, please visit, talk with our team by calling 844.988.7800 or connect with us through

SIH, SIU Team up for fourth year to “Black Out Cancer”

Saluki Athletics and Southern Illinois Healthcare (SIH) are once again teaming up for an event called “the best charity promotion in college football.” On Saturday, September 26, the SIU Saluki football team will once again wear commemorative black jerseys during Family Weekend at the Salukis Black Out Cancer game.

In the weeks leading up to game day, fans participate in online bidding for the namesake jerseys in honor of a friend or family member impacted by the deadly disease. It’s the fourth year proceeds from the jersey bidding will benefit the new SIH Cancer Institute, which opened earlier this year.

SIH Vice President of Community Affairs Woody Thorne credits former Saluki standout Mike McElroy for initiating the “Black Out Cancer” game at SIU.

“Mike’s vision, and the ongoing partnership between SIU Athletics and the SIH Foundation, has proven to create a lasting and significant benefit to cancer patients and the communities served by SIU and SIH across the region,” Thorne said.

The symbolism of strength and courage has been especially poignant for players over the years, as they’ve donned jerseys bearing the names of their own mothers and grandmothers, fathers and grandfathers, and other close friends and family. Southern Illinoisans battling the disease and SIU Alumni from across the country also join in on the bidding, where the top 80 bids are matched with the player of their choice.

“It is an honor for Saluki Athletics to play a part in SIH’s efforts to deliver life-changing health care and cancer treatment to our community,” said SIU Director of Athletics Tommy Bell

The Salukis were the first college football team in the nation to develop and implement the “Black Out Cancer” game. To date, the event has raised nearly $132,000 for the SIH Cancer Institute.

For more information on the history of the game and ways to bid,

Vascular Services Evolve

Vascular services are growing as Dr. Mohammad Al-Zoubaidi, a board certified, fellowship-trained, vascular/endovascular surgeon, joins SIH Medical Group in Carbondale. Southern Illinois Healthcare’s Prairie Heart Institute already has a strong endovascular program (managing the arteries and veins outside the heart using minimally-invasive techniques). The addition of a vascular surgeon completes the comprehensive range of services.

What is Vascular Surgery?

Vascular surgery is a specialty of surgery which deals with diseases of the vascular system (arteries and veins outside the heart.) A vascular surgeon uses medical therapy or minimally-invasive catheter procedures (endovascular) as well. However, he also has the ability to do open surgical vascular reconstruction if needed.

According to Al-Zoubaidi, “This service raises the bar for SIH because we can now utilize minimally invasive techniques, an open surgery option or a hybrid of the two.”

Do you have a vascular problem?

  • Pain in the legs when walking
  • Swelling of the veins
  • Wounds that won’t heal

You’re looking at the only generally noticeable symptoms related to vascular issues. The other symptoms are much more vicious; and when they strike, the situation is critical.

  • Stroke
  • Ruptured aneurysm
  • Cold or discolored feet

Conditions treated by Vascular/Endovascular Surgery

Because vascular diseases are mostly gradual problems, the symptoms can be so subtle they go unnoticed. That’s why it’s so important to be established with a primary care physician and have regular check-ups. Be sure to share if you have the symptoms above. That, along with your risk factors (blood pressure, height, weight and other medical issues) can be the trigger for your doctor to order some simple tests that can find the sleeping giants listed below.

Once found, vascular specialists take into account your medical history to determine whether medical therapy, minimally-invasive or an open surgical technique will be the best approach. If you have multiple vessel issues, it may actually be a combination…hence the word “hybrid.”

Below is a list of diseases and the physicians at Prairie Heart Institute Southern Illinois Healthcare who can treat with minimally invasive measures and/or open surgery.

Endovascular Surgery (performed in the cath lab):

Mohammed Al-Zoubaidi, MD, Raed Al-Dallow, MD, Son Le, MD,
Varadendra Panchamukhi, MD,Magdalena Zeglin, MD

  • abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA)
  • varicose veins
  • peripheral vascular disease (PVD)
  • carotid artery disease
  • temporary & permanent dialysis access
NEW! Open Vascular Surgery (performed in an operating room):

Mohammed Al-Zoubaidi, MD

  • Abdominal aortic aneurysm
  • varicose veins
  • peripheral vascular disease
  • carotid artery disease
  • dialysis access troubleshooting

Memorial Hospital of Carbondale Auxiliary Celebrates 50 Years of Service

The dictionary describes a volunteer as being a person who freely offers to take part in an enterprise or undertakes a task. Memorial Hospital of Carbondale Auxiliary & Volunteers has over 100 members who have done just that for the past 50 years.

The group was honored during a luncheon last Thursday. Hospital Administrator Bart Millstead lauded the group for all they do. “You are all amazing,” he told them. “On behalf of myself and the staff, thank you for being such an important part of our hospital and community.”

Reading from a large paper scroll he had prepared, Millstead said the group began 50 years ago with a mobile candy cart. Over the years money raised by the auxiliary has helped to provide thousands of dollars in renovations at the facility and provided scholarships for local high school students planning to pursue careers in the medical field. They recently donated $150,000 towards the new SIH Cancer Center.


Peggy Henson, Director of Volunteers at the hospital said the group works primarily Monday through Friday between the hours of 9 am and 5 pm. “We are also fortunate enough to have a small handful of persons working in the Gift Shop on select weekends,” said Henson. They man the hospital’s gift shop, run errands, deliver flowers, direct visitors and host various fundraisers throughout the year.

Cindy Frenkel, Nursing Administration said the volunteers and auxiliary members add so much to the hospital. “For the number of hours you all put in, to the donations you raise for this hospital, we can’t thank you enough,” said Frenkel.

Ludine Chamness of Murphysboro has been a volunteer at the hospital for 32 years. Her mother, Violet Cecil, was a volunteer before her.
“The people here become like your family,” said Chamness. “I really enjoy being a volunteer.”

Robb Summers is coming upon his tenth year volunteering with the auxiliary. “I’ve always been active in community service,” said Summers. “Not only does being a volunteer enable me to help others, it also provides me a chance to get out and be around other people.”

Henson said she loves her job. “I get to come to work every day and work with a great group of people,” said Henson.