Paste your Bing Webmaster Tools verification code here Paste your Google Webmaster Tools verification code here

Can I get the flu from the flu shot? A flu vaccine myth busted

Posted by | Posted in Physician Services, Videos | Posted on 30-09-2011

Flu season has arrived. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as many as 60 million people in the United States will develop influenza this year, leading to more than 200,000 hospitalizations from related complications.

Protect yourself and your loved ones by getting vaccinated.

“Vaccines to prevent seasonal influenza have a long and successful track record of safety and effectiveness in the United States,” Karen Midthun, MD, director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said in a statement. “It is important to get vaccinated every year, even if the strains in the vaccine do not change, because the protection received the previous year will diminish over time and may be too low to provide protection into the next year.”

Watch Rajesh Govindaiah, MD, Memorial Health System’s chief medical officer, bust a common flu vaccine myth below.

The flu vaccine is available for all patients of Memorial Physician Services. Go to to make an appointment.

Saving Lives and Strengthening Our Community: CPR Anytime

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Heart, Videos | Posted on 29-09-2011

According to the American Heart Association, less than 6 percent of people who suffer sudden cardiac arrest away from a hospital survive.

Kelly Corcoran, Memorial Medical Center’s AHA Training Center coordinator, wants to do something to increase that percentage.

“This is not a statistic,” she said. “This is a mother or father, a lifelong friend or the person standing in front of you at the grocery store.”  Read the rest of this entry »

Babies and Briefcases — Becoming a Working Mom

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Maternity, Women | Posted on 27-09-2011

This is our fourth and final installment in our New Mom series. Click here for Part 3, “Just the Baby Blues – or Something More,” here for Part 2, “4 Steps to a Healthier Post-Baby Body,” and here for Part 1, “How to establish a healthy breastfeeding relationship.”

Maternity leave is a special time for moms to bond with their new babes. But for the approximately 65 percent of women who work outside the home, that time eventually comes to an end (for some, more quickly than others).

Returning to work can be a challenge emotionally and logistically. Some working mothers at Memorial Medical Center, including Marlene Rahe, a registered nurse and lactation consultant on our Family Maternity Suites, as well as two mothers of newborn daughters who recently returned to work, share their tips on how to best juggle your many hats as a working mom: Read the rest of this entry »

3 Surprising Signs You’re Having Heart Problems – And What to Do About It

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Heart | Posted on 23-09-2011

We’re all familiar with the typical signs of heart disease – pain, tightness or pressure in the chest.

But there are other signs that may point to heart disease that are easy to overlook. If you experience any of them, you may want to talk to your family doctor. While it may be routine and unrelated to your heart, it doesn’t hurt to have it checked out. Read the rest of this entry »

Healthy Recipes that Won’t Hurt Your Wallet

Posted by | Posted in Bariatrics, Events, Nutrition | Posted on 20-09-2011

Springfield chefs Michael Higgins (Maldaner’s Restaurant) and Augie Mrozowski (Augie’s Front Burner and American Harvest Eatery) served up healthy, seasonal and affordable dishes Sept. 13 to nearly 150 community members during Memorial’s “Healthy Eating on a Budget” program, co-sponsored by Memorial Medical Center and Friends of Memorial. Below are some of recipes they shared:

Michael Higgins

Chef Higgins’ dishes centered on the versatile and affordable winter squash, particularly butternut squash. His butternut squash soup, quinoa with grapes and squash, and black bean and squash salad created a colorful spread.

Winter Squash Soup – Ingredients

Please note: this soup can be used with almost any type of winter squash.

  • 1 medium to large butternut squash (about 3.5 pounds), halved and seeded
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter or vegetable oil
  • 2 large yellow onions, chopped
  • 4 Tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • Bay leaves
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 6 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • Salt
  • Optional garnish: chopped fresh parsley or cilantro, croutons or baked squash seeds.

Preheat oven to 400 F. Bake the squash on an oiled baking sheet for one hour or until squash can be easily pierced with a fork. Let cool, then scoop pulp from the squash skins, discarding skins.

In a soup pot, melt butter (or heat oil) over medium-low heat. Add in onions, ginger, bay leaves and thyme. Stir until tender but not browned – about 5-10 minutes. Stir in the squash, along with 4 cups of stock. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring and breaking up the squash with a spoon, for about 20 minutes. Puree until smooth. Return to the pot and stir in 2 cups of stock and 1 ½ tsp salt. Heat through.

Augie Mrozowski

Chef Augie’s dishes — Couscous with a Cumin-Lime Vinaigrette and Healthy Egg Pie — featured low-fat, nutrient-rich ingredients that are easily accessible and big on flavor. Augie said he cooks with couscous frequently because of its versatility.

Couscous with Cumin-Lime Vinaigrette – Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked couscous
  • 1 ¼ cup chicken broth
  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 8 green onions, chopped
  • 1 small cucumber, diced
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro or mint, finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper

Bring broth to boil in large sauce pan. Stir in couscous. Cover pan, remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes. In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, vinegar and cumin. Add green onions, cucumber and cilantro or mint. Toss to coat. Fluff couscous well, breaking up any chunks. Add vegetable mixture and mix well. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve at once or refrigerate until ready to serve.

Healthy Egg Pie – Ingredients:

  • 1 frozen pastry shell such as Wholly Wholesome brand
  • 2 ½ tsp olive oil, divided
  • 2 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 (5-ounce) package prewashed baby spinach
  • ½ tsp salt, divided
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 1 (4-ounce) package assorted mushrooms
  • 2/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (about 3 ounces), divided
  • 1 cup plain soy milk or milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 large egg whites

Preheat oven to 375. Bake pastry shell in pie or quiche pan for 10-12 minutes or until browned. Remove shell from over, set aside. Leave oven on.

Heat 1¼ tsp oil over medium heat in a large nonstick skillet. Add shallots. Add spinach and cook 2-3 minutes or until wilted. Add ¼ tsp salt and a dash of pepper. Transfer to a plate and set aside. Using the same pan, heat the remaining oil and cook mushrooms for about 6 minutes or until browned on both sides. Remove from heat. Season with remaining ¼ tsp salt and ¼ tsp pepper.

Sprinkle 1/3 cup Parmesan over bottom of pastry crust. Top with spinach and mushrooms. In a separate bowl, whisk together milk or soy milk with egg and egg whites. Pour into shell. Top with remaining Parmesan and bake for 45-50 minutes or until top is firm and golden brown. Cut into wedges and serve.

Chef Augie prepares his Healthy Egg Pie

Just the Baby Blues or Something More? Signs of Postpartum Depression

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Maternity, Mental Health, Women | Posted on 19-09-2011

postpartumThis is Part 3 in our New Mom series. Click here for Part 2, “4 Steps to a Healthier Post-Baby Body” and click here for Part 1, “How to establish a healthy breastfeeding relationship”.

Feeling tired and emotional after having a baby is normal for women to experience. You’re happy, but tears fall anyway. You’re tired. And you’re wondering how you’ll measure up as a mom. In most cases, these thoughts are normal and can be considered the baby blues — if they fade away after a couple days.

But when those feelings evolve to those of hopelessness and irritability and begin to affect your eating and sleeping habits for two weeks or more, you may be experiencing postpartum depression. Read the rest of this entry »

How to Eat Healthy on a Budget

Posted by | Posted in Events, Expert Tips, Nutrition | Posted on 16-09-2011

Food isn’t getting any cheaper, and a large part of our population’s waistlines aren’t getting any smaller. Despite the notion that eating healthy isn’t always cheap, it’s easier to achieve than many believe. By shopping smartly and making a conscious effort to fill your home with healthy eats while staying within a budget, it’s possible.

Memorial Medical Center dietitian Katie Horstmeyer joined local chefs Michael Higgins (Maldaner’s Restaurant), Augie Mrozowski (Augie’s Front Burner and American Harvest Eatery), and nutrition services coordinator Stephanie Bess for the Illinois WIC program to share shopping and cooking tips Sept. 13 during a “Eating Healthy on a Budget” program at MMC.

Horstmeyer says we spend nearly 10 percent of our disposable income on food. Here are some tips she shared to keep food costs under control: Read the rest of this entry »

Prostate Cancer: What Men Need to Know

Posted by | Posted in Cancer Care, Events, Men | Posted on 15-09-2011

More than 210,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year and more than 32,000 will die, according to the National Cancer Institute (NCI). One in every six men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetimes.

But a simple blood test called a PSA test can help catch prostate cancer early. The PSA test measures the level of prostate-specific antigen (PSA), a protein produced by the prostate gland, according to the American Cancer Society. Read the rest of this entry »

Heart Attack Care Crucial in the Minutes After Onset

Posted by | Posted in Emergency, Expert Tips, Heart, Memorial Medical Center | Posted on 13-09-2011

heart attack careAs a registered nurse, Bill Ferrell knew what he was in for when he awoke to crushing chest pain in the early morning in November 2009. By the time the ambulance arrived, Ferrell couldn’t stand or talk. First responders sent his electrocardiogram (EKG) directly to a physician, and he was diagnosed with acute myocardial infarction, commonly known as a heart attack, before he even reached the doors of Memorial Medical Center’s Emergency Department.

Within 42 minutes of arriving, Ferrell was transported to the Cardiac Cath Lab and received a stent in his blocked artery, which brought immediate relief by the restored blood flow to his heart. The quick care was a result of Memorial’s Star 80 program, a team effort among caregivers and physicians in the Emergency Department and Cardiac Cath Lab to open the heart blockage in patients suffering heart attacks within 80 minutes or less. Read the rest of this entry »

4 Steps to a Healthier Post-Baby Body

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Maternity, Women | Posted on 09-09-2011

how to lose weight after babyThis is Part 2 in our New Mom series. Click here for Part 1, “How to establish a healthy breastfeeding relationship”

Soon after a new mom gives birth, her thoughts tend to turn to how they are going to get that pre-baby body back. Veteran moms Ruta Kulys, a licensed psychotherapist at Memorial Counseling Associates who specializes in mind-body therapy and is also a certified Hatha and prenatal yoga instructor, and Julie Finnell, a physical therapist with Outpatient Rehab Services at Koke Mill Medical Center, suggest four tips for moms on the pursuit of a healthy post-baby body: Read the rest of this entry »