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Thanks to Our Docs

Posted by | Posted in Physician Services | Posted on 30-03-2012

They’re there in good times and bad. They pull long shifts with round-the-clock responsibility. And each day, they help improve the health of the people and communities we serve.

In honor of Doctors’ Day, we’d like to publically thank the 56 primary care physicians at Memorial Physician Services and the nearly 1,000 doctors who care for patients at our three hospitals and clinic locations. Their knowledge and skill enable us be a national leader in healthcare. But it’s their compassion, dedication and genuine concern that patients remember most.   

When Springfield resident Bryan Harvey was 30 years old, he went temporarily blind on a golf course. Seven years later, what he and his wife, Susan, thought was increased klutziness was diagnosed as primary progressive multiple sclerosis. The diagnosis is the rarer form of MS that doesn’t include relapse periods but worsens over time, gradually leading to disability.

At 43 years old, he had to retire from his job running a newspaper delivery agency. Eventually he was confined to a wheelchair. As a competitive former athlete, the transition was difficult physically and emotionally.

That’s when he went to see Nicole Florence, MD, at Memorial Physician Services’ Koke Mill Medical Associates. Read the rest of this entry »

Can What You Eat Affect Your Mental Health?

Posted by | Posted in Bariatrics, Expert Tips, Mental Health, Nutrition, Pediatrics | Posted on 28-03-2012

Remember the saying ‘You are what you eat?’ Well, it also rings true for your mood.

Nutrition plays an important role in physical health, but it also affects your behavior and brain function.

“The brain is a metabolically active organ that has a high demand for nutrients,” said Jude Clapper, a registered dietitian at Memorial Counseling Associates. “Being hungry can make us feel irritable and restless. An inadequate intake of nutritional foods may affect a person’s energy level, motivation, alertness and problem-solving skills.” Read the rest of this entry »

Get Your Arm in Pitch-Perfect Shape: Tips from SportsCare Trainers

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, SportsCare | Posted on 27-03-2012

Baseball pitcher throwing ballIt’s baseball season, and if you’re a baseball or softball player gearing up for your spring and summer leagues, it’s important to keep your throwing arm healthy, especially if you are a pitcher.

Cole Thornton, ATC, an athletic trainer for Memorial SportsCare who works with Athens High School athletes, said pitchers – or any athlete who throws something, such as a football player, javelin thrower or even tennis player — should keep a few key things in mind while trying to maintain proper throwing mechanics and achieving great results while keeping healthy. Read the rest of this entry »

MRI, CT, X-ray —What’s the Difference?

Posted by | Posted in Neuroscience | Posted on 26-03-2012

You’ve heard the terms – MRI, CT scan, and X-ray. Chances are you know these are imaging scans used to evaluate and diagnose patients. But do you know how and why they’re used?

Medical imaging has become a huge part of patient care, in both hospital and clinic settings. Whether it’s a bone fracture, heart complication or lump in the breast, your physician now depends on this technology for diagnosis and treatment.

Multiple types of imaging scans are used each day and understanding the difference can be confusing. Kurt Brauer, BS, RT (R) (MR), Inpatient Imaging manager at Memorial Medical Center, breaks down the major technologies below so you’ll better understand what’s involved the next time your doctor recommends a scan. Read the rest of this entry »

Faithful to Fitness: 10 Ways to Stay Motivated

Posted by | Posted in Bariatrics, Exercise, Expert Tips | Posted on 22-03-2012

March is nearly over — how’s that New Year’s resolution to exercise going? Is your gym membership card still being used regularly?

Starting a fitness routine is the easy part; sticking with the routine seems to be the hard part. During the first few weeks of your new exercise routine, you’re pumped to exercise. Everything’s going great – you make it to the gym every day you planned to, you’re feeling great and full of energy, and you’re wondering why you haven’t done this before … and then BAM! Life happens. Or you don’t see the results you want right away and simply give up.

Yet it is apparent that many people do manage to hang in there. They would no sooner skip their morning workout than their morning shower. What’s their secret? Super exercise powers? Read the rest of this entry »

Stop the Sniffles — A Pediatrician’s Advice to Curb Children’s Springtime Allergies

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Pediatrics, Physician Services, Summer | Posted on 21-03-2012

Child rubbing itchy eyesChildren can’t wait to play outside now that warmer weather has arrived. But something’s out there waiting for many of them, too: Seasonal allergies are back.

Allergies most often begin to appear in children between 2 and 5 years old, said Ashish John, MD, a pediatrician with Koke Mill Medical Associates in Springfield, part of Memorial Physician Services.

Dr. John said children may have allergies if they have a constant cough, a constant runny nose or if they regularly sound congested. Other common signs that parents don’t often recognize – a child who is constantly clearing his or her throat or rubbing his or her eyes.

If you suspect allergies, it’s important to call your family doctor or pediatrician to schedule an appointment and discuss the symptoms. Read the rest of this entry »

Frequent Migraines? It May Be Time to See a Doctor

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Neuroscience, Physician Services | Posted on 19-03-2012

Woman with migraine headache

You can feel it coming on. Light hurts your eyes. Whispers grate on your ears. The pounding in your head reminds you of a construction zone.

Yep. It’s a migraine. And according to Benjamin Montgomery, MD, with Memorial Physician Services in Jacksonville, it can last anywhere from two to 72 hours.

“The pain is usually concentrated on one side of the head and is often accompanied by nausea and vomiting,” Dr. Montgomery said. “It makes you basically miserable.”

About 6 percent of men and 18 percent of women will get a migraine this year. Although it affects every age, middle-aged women are the most likely to suffer from the headaches. Read the rest of this entry »

Five Quick & Easy Ways to Chill Out

Posted by | Posted in Classes, Exercise, Expert Tips, Mental Health | Posted on 15-03-2012

Business Man Relaxing During stressful dayWe’ve all been there – tight shoulder muscles, an annoying headache and no energy. Stress affects our physical health as well as our mental health.

“Most visits to a doctor’s office are due to stress-related conditions,” said Ruta Kulys, a licensed clinical social worker at Memorial Counseling Associates. “Stress affects our sleep, appetite, energy, mood and concentration. Stress also interferes with our body’s ability to function properly and maintain health.”

To undo the effects of stress, you need to learn how to deeply relax.  Read the rest of this entry »

It’s Easy to Eat Green St. Patrick’s Day

Posted by | Posted in Bariatrics, Expert Tips, Nutrition | Posted on 14-03-2012

Saturday is St. Patrick’s Day, when we commemorate the death of Ireland’s patron saint by wearing, eating and drinking all things green.

To keep the holiday healthy, break away from tradition this year and forgo that salty, fatty corned beef and caloric beer by considering dishes that include a variety of green vegetables.

Including green vegetables in your diet can reduce the risk of some chronic diseases and make up an overall healthy diet. The USDA recommends that adults get at least 2½ cups of vegetables each day. Leafy green vegetables are a great source of vitamins and minerals. In particular, spinach is rich in calcium, vitamin K, folic acid and iron, and it helps prevent heart disease, osteoporosis, arthritis and colon cancer. Read the rest of this entry »

Bereavement Support Groups Help Heal

Posted by | Posted in Home Services, Mental Health, Resources | Posted on 12-03-2012

Grief.  It’s defined simply as mental suffering or stress.

But it’s more than that. If you’ve lost a close loved one, you know the intense pain and wave of emotions that follow: denial, anger, despair and hopelessness.

The emotions are part of the healing process. But with time, patience and support, you can get to a place of peace and acceptance.

Bereavement support groups, provided by Memorial Home Services Hospice, meet twice a month in Springfield, Jacksonville and Taylorville. Members share stories and talk about how their lives have changed. They give each other tips on how to cope, offer reassurance and even develop friendships outside of the group. Read the rest of this entry »