Phil McCarty, 38, was finishing 30 pull-ups in a friendly competition among friends at the Triple Threat gym in Jacksonville when he lost consciousness and fell 10 feet to the floor, landing on his back and bouncing his head twice on the concrete floor.
“I immediately sat up and was conscious,” Phil said. “I didn’t want to go to the hospital. I told everyone ‘if I can walk to the car, I’m going home.’”
This was exactly the wrong response, and Phil knew better. He was not only a paramedic of 20 years, but he had taught EMS for 10 years and worked as the Emergency Management coordinator for Morgan County and the city of Jacksonville. Read the rest of this entry »
Mike Dulakis was progressing through his normal workout Feb. 3 at Taylorville’s Lock Up Gym, lifting weights from a seated position, when everything changed. The 39-year-old guard for the Taylorville Correctional Facility was “training to failure,” a common weight-lifting strategy. Without warning, he slid out of the chair onto the floor in what felt like slow motion.
He doesn’t remember much after that.
“I was trying to get up, and I didn’t understand why I couldn’t get up,” Mike said.
A paramedic working out at the gym recognized the signs of stroke, and gym personnel called 911 immediately. Read the rest of this entry »
It’s been said what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Gillespie’s Randy Redmon and his wife Amanda are a true testament to that age-old quote.
Three years ago their house burned to the ground. The lint trap in their dryer sparked and when the heat reached the cleaning chemicals stored in the laundry room, the house exploded. Thankfully the couple and their four kids weren’t home, but the family lost everything.
After regrouping, 37-year-old Randy and 32-year-old Amanda bought a small animal farm not far from their previous home. They went on with their lives – he drove a truck for a waste-management service and she worked at a local bank. The kids, from 11-year-old Ambrosia to 17-year-old Logan with Jordan and Chase in between, stayed busy with school and horseback riding—one of the family’s favorite pastimes.
Then came Aug. 23, 2014—and once again their lives turned upside down. Read the rest of this entry »
The possibility that she might be having a heart attack only briefly crossed Becky Griffith’s mind. She was, after all, only 40 years old.
Last November, the mother of two began to feel severely fatigued and short of breath. While she had no fever and didn’t feel sick, something still didn’t feel right.
“It felt like I had run a marathon,” said Becky, who co-owns A New You Salon and Spa in Springfield with her younger sister.
After her exhaustion lingered for a week, Becky decided it was time to visit her doctor. That’s when she briefly considered a heart attack but dismissed it. She received an EKG, and her physician said she likely was experiencing acid reflux.
Any relief she felt from her doctor’s visit was short-lived. She awoke at 11:30 that night with severe pain in the middle of her chest and radiating down both arms and in her jaw. She stayed awake in a recliner through the night and finally took her blood pressure at 6:30 a.m. It was well above normal. Read the rest of this entry »
It’s the time of year when we all want to kick on the furnace and cozy up on the sofa. But, before you do, keep yourself and your loved ones safe by checking your furnace and testing the carbon monoxide alarms in your home.
“In the fall, we tend to see an increase of people with carbon monoxide exposures because faulty furnaces and heaters are being used for the first time since the spring,” said Matthew Johnston, MD, a physician with the Memorial Medical Center Emergency Department and Midwest Emergency Department Specialists.
It’s estimated that about 170 people in the United States die from carbon monoxide poisoning each year. However, for each person who dies, several more are treated in emergency rooms. According to Timothy Harvey, MD, a physician with the Memorial Medical Center Emergency Department and Midwest Emergency Department Specialists, anyone can experience carbon monoxide poisoning. Read the rest of this entry »
On Oct. 8, 2013, George Rudis began his day the way he always does—with a run at the Sacred Heart-Griffin track. For the 62-year-old Springfield native and lifelong athlete in training for a marathon, everything seemed normal.
“I got up like I do every day, got to the track and we ran our first mile as a warm up,” he said. “I went to check my watch, and, the next thing I knew, I woke up two days later in the hospital. I remember nothing beyond that.”
In the time in between — the time he doesn’t remember — George nearly died three times. Read the rest of this entry »
Strokes are the fourth-leading cause of death and the leading cause of serious disability in the United States. Even so, the majority of people know very little about these debilitating events—and fewer realize they might just be at risk.
“Half of all Americans have at least one main symptom that can lead to stroke; they have high blood pressure or high cholesterol, or they smoke,” said Amanda Conn, a registered nurse and coordinator for the Stroke Center at Memorial Medical Center. “When you consider complexities like diabetes, heart disease or obesity, we’re literally walking time bombs.”
To help diffuse more than a few ticking bombs, Conn and other medical experts have busted the most common stroke myths—and these facts could save your life. Read the rest of this entry »
About 800,000 children visit an emergency room each year because of an accidental poisoning. It’s the second cause of unintentional injury death in the country, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
An accidental poisoning can involve the unintentional ingestion of medications, household products or even items such as batteries or coins. Dennis Danner, who has 36 years of nursing experience, the majority of which has been spent in an emergency or urgent-care setting for Memorial, provides some insight into how these accidental ingestions may occur among children – and what you need to know if it happens. Read the rest of this entry »
At age 26, Darah Nelson is far younger than the average stroke patient. Yet on Oct. 18, 2012, she found herself in her office, the door closed, and unable to move or speak. A family friend, who had once experienced a stroke, happened to stop by, opened her door and quickly recognized the signs of a stroke.
Darah arrived via ambulance to Memorial Medical Center, where the Emergency Department team launched its Star 45 program, the 45-minute diagnostic timeline that determines whether patients, like Darah, are candidates for stroke treatment.
The video below chronicles her story. Read the rest of this entry »
Members of ER Abroad helped deliver baby Marco on the first day of their February 2009 visit to Mercy Clinic in Guatemala.
Somewhere in the rural countryside near Tululche, Guatemala, a young boy named Marco has a team from Memorial Medical Center’s Emergency Department to credit for his safe birth three years ago.
The medical team was in Guatemala as part of ER Abroad, a group that visits the Mercy Clinic in Tululche at least twice a year. ER Abroad is an independent 501c(3) organization with which several MMC nurses and other medical professionals, as well as their family members, travel to help provide much-needed healthcare services, medical supplies and money to an impoverished area of Guatamala. The team has made seven trips to Mercy Clinic and its adjoining orphanage, Casa Angelina, since February 2008 and recently expanded with a trip to Kenya in September 2011. Read the rest of this entry »