September, 2009


SOMC Hosts Free Breast Cancer Screening

Southern Ohio Medical Center will host a free breast cancer screening from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 8 at the SOMC Cancer Center, 1121 Kinney’s Lane, Portsmouth.

The event is open to all local uninsured and underinsured women and is sponsored in part by SOMC, the Fight Cancer…Save Lives Cancer Coalition and the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation.

Registration by appointment is necessary and can be made by calling the SOMC Volunteer Office at 356-8234.

290+ In Annual Run For Your LIFE

More than 290 runners participated in the 32nd annual Run For Your LIFE community races Saturday, Sept. 5, starting at the SOMC LIFE Center.

Overall winners in the 5-K race were Zach Holbert and Maddie McAllister, while overall winners in the 10-K event were Blake Jones and Amy Kline.

5-K winners in each age and gender group included: Male: 1-15, Levi Cook, Daniel Evory, Kyle Johnson; Female: 1-15, Courtney Blanton, Sheridan McLean, Elysia Montgomery; Male: 16-19, Jordan Selby, Dylan Pack, Brady Evans; Female: 16-19, Karissa Adkins, Jasmine Davis, Andrea Benjamin; Male: 20-24, Anthony Webb, Zach Phillips; Female: 20-24, Jodi Smith, Kristy King, Danielle Marion; Male: 25-29, Jason Smith, Aaron Prose, Daniel Waters; Female: 25-29, Cathy Maddox, Caitlin Throckmorton, Amy Conn; Male: 30-34, Greg Young, Brad Vanover, Mike Ashley; Female: 30-34, Lindsey Hamilton, Kat Colley, Angela Greenslate; Male: 35-39, Ken Mantle, Tim Buckle, Jay Risheh; Female: 35-39, Aimee Miller, Stacy Hornikel, Victoria Book; Male: 40-44; Ed Edwards, Brian Shope, John Hall; Female: 40-44, Julie Panzera, Leigh Phillips, Christie Blair; Male: 45-49, Troy Joyce, Roy Smith, Kevin Kammler; Female: 45-49, Sandy Smith, Kim Toland, Pam Shonkwiler; Male: 50-54, Greg Bridgewater, Keith Maddox, Tom Walker; Female: 50-54, Barbara Duncan, Jill Adkins, Peggy Kindinger; Male: 55-59, Frank James, Dean Wray, David Fitch; Female: 55-59, Jackie Journey, Carole Perkins; Male: 60-64, Daniel Ruggiero, Larry Neff, Larry Fitch; Female: 60-64, Betty Neff, Peggy Ruggiero, Kendra Hughes; Male: 65-99, Sonny Mullins, Richard Cielec, John Euton; Female: 65-99, Lois Rase.

10-K winners in each age and gender group included: Male: 16-19, Chase Wittington, Ralph Craft, Casey Whittington; Female: 16-19, Breanna Butler; Male: 20-24, Colton Halverson, Joshua Kelley; Male: 25-29, Kevin Locker, James Spaulding, Derrick Carver; Female: 25-29, Regina Tipton; Male: 30-34, Tom Deck, Jeremy Burnside, Daniel McDonie; Female: 30-34, Angie Welch, Dana Fetters; Male: 35-39, Christopher Delotel, Chris Lowery; Female: 35-39, Andrea Will, Amy Lowery, Jennifer Mault; Male: 40-44, John Austin, John Walsh, Ryan Ramsey; Female: 40-44, Angie Walsh, Melody Messer, Tempest Allen; Male: 45-49, Patrick Whitt, Marty Redden, Gregory Mays; Female: 45-49, Sharon Welsh; Male: 50-54, Greg Malone, Russ Sommers, Mike Marion; Female: 50-54, Regina Clay, Theresa Kline, Sharon Malone; Male: 55-59, Dale Mueller, Mike Thompson, Larry Tieman; Female: 55-59, Becky Thompson; Male: 60-64, Delmar Scowden; Male: 65-99, Kou Liu.

SOMC Relocates Pediatric Services to Emergency Department

Southern Ohio Medical Center takes seriously an obligation to our patients to provide the highest quality of care. For the past 10 years, SOMC has cross-trained nursing staff to care for both adults and pediatrics. This is standard of care for a community our size.

“We want to provide our patients with excellent care at the highest safety standards. We have consulted our pediatricians and have determined that consolidating all pediatric care on the main campus to the Emergency Department, where the majority of our children are seen, makes sense,” said Claudia Burchett, Vice President of Patient Services and Chief Nursing Officer.

SOMC has and will also continue to care for children at the Urgent Care Center and the SOMC Healthcare Center.

SOMC treats approximately 25,000 children in the Emergency Department and Healthcare Center and at the Wheelersburg Urgent Care Center. Malissa Warrick, Nurse Manager of SOMC’s Orthopedic and Family Care Unit said an overwhelming majority of admitted patients were discharged within 24-hours. SOMC’s history and collaboration with Children’s Hospitals has significantly helped SOMC deliver the most appropriate care when needed.

At any point that a treating physician believes that a patient should be admitted as an inpatient, SOMC will arrange for admission to the appropriate unit or upon physician order, transfer to a specialized children’s hospital.

“SOMC physicians can admit patients under the age of 18 to one of our existing inpatient units when appropriate,” Burchett said. “Children that require procedures such as an appendectomy or tonsillectomy, will, as they always have, be cared for by our skilled nursing staff.”

“We have a staff of skilled clinicians who have been treating children for many years. The addition of the observation area will only heighten our focus on our pediatric patients,” said Jason Cheatham, DO, FACEP, Director of Emergency Department Operations at SOMC.

He said the majority of pediatric patients that present to the emergency room are treated and released.

“We truly have an amazing staff who have always been able to determine whether a child needs to be admitted or treated and released,” said George Pettit, MD, FACOG, Chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology at SOMC.

Queen Receives Prestigious Navy Ranking

Mary Queen, medical technologist of the SOMC Microbiology Lab, was recently named one of eight individuals nationwide to receive a promotion as Master Chief Petty Officer, Hospital Corpsman, E9 for the United States Navy Reserve.

In her new role, Queen will gain national responsibility and oversee administration of all personnel assigned to one of the four Operational Health Support Units within the U.S. She also is eligible to become a member of the selection boards responsible for choosing future recipients.

Queen received the prestigious position based on a two-week review of eligible candidates. Only one percent of Navy Reserve members hold the rank of Master Chief Hospital Corpsman and very few are female.

A native of Jackson, Ohio, Queen obtained a Master¹s degree in Health Service Administration from St. Joseph¹s College of Maine. She currently serves as the senior enlisted leader of the Operational Health Support Unit Great Lakes, Detachment C, based in Columbus, Ohio, and the coordinator of the Hospital Corpsman Basic A-School for the Great Lakes, Illinois 22 detachments, which encompass five states.

Queen has served as a member of the Navy Reserves for 20 years and has been an employee of Southern Ohio Medical Center for more than 30 years.

SOMC Brings Wound-Healing Technology Close to Home

The SOMC Wound Healing Center is bringing new technology and therapies to the patients of the tri-state area, helping to reverse the injuries caused by radiation treatment and aid in the prevention of chronic wounds. Pictured with the hyperbaric oxygen chamber are (l to r) Dr. Sonja Lichtenstein, recent patient Charles Canter, and Respiratory Therapist Deanna Potter.

The Centers for Disease Control estimate that 64 percent of adults who are newly diagnosed with cancer will still be living in five years. Yet many patients who undergo radiation treatment may discover hidden complications years after beating the disease.

The Wound Healing Center at Southern Ohio Medical Center is offering advancements in cancer-related therapies to help patients reverse these effects.

“Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a relatively new form of treatment that significantly increases the speed at which wounds and injuries heal,” Dr. Sonja Lichtenstein, medical director of the SOMC Wound Healing Center, said. “It is also the only known treatment that can retract delayed radiation damage, often showing improvement or complete resolution in 60 to 80 percent of patients.”

The process works through a pure oxygen chamber that has been pressurized at higher-than-normal atmospheric levels. Patients lie in the chamber for two hours at a time and are able to watch television and relax while the healing process occurs.

“The air pressure inside the chamber is two and a half times greater than normal air pressure, helping the blood carry oxygen to injured organs and tissues more quickly and efficiently,” she explained.

“This type of non-invasive therapy is extremely beneficial for most wounds, and has been particularly helpful to patients suffering from damage of the brain, chest wall, abdomen, pelvis, bladder, intestines or the muscle and soft tissues of the face and throat due to radiation treatment.”

Hyperbaric oxygen also has had some of its most dramatic successes in treating damage to the jaw bone, as was the case with recent Wound Healing Center patient, Charles Canter.

“The pain was awful and I thought it would never heal,” Canter said of his injury. “I had tried every known treatment and nothing had worked. Finally my physician suggested hyperbaric oxygen therapy and told me it could be done within 45-minutes of my home. I immediately jumped at the opportunity.”

Within four two-hour treatments at the center, Canter felt remarkably different, noticing an increase in energy and improvement in pain. By the time his four-weeks of therapy had concluded, Canter’s injury had completely healed.

“The hyperbaric oxygen chamber is close to home while offering superior technology and results,” he said. “Better yet, the staff always made me feel comfortable and did everything they could to help me along my path of recovery. I would recommend SOMC services to anyone in a heartbeat and I thank the staff members of the Wound Healing Center for repairing my life.”

To learn more about the benefits of hyperbaric oxygen therapy or other treatments offered at the SOMC Wound Healing Center, please call 356-8775.

HDR Procedure Available for Gynecological Cancers

Southern Ohio Medical Center now has the technology available to cut the treatment for gynecologic cancers down from days to hours. High Dose Rate Brachytherapy, currently being used at the SOMC Cancer Center in the treatment of some forms of breast and skin cancer, is now available to women with gynecological cancer and soon will be available for the treatment of lung cancer.

“In the past, women suffering from gynecological cancer would be subjected to at least three days stay in the hospital, lying flat on their back with no movement and no visitors due to the radiation emission in the room,” said Dr. Li-Fen Lien Chang, Senior Medical Director of Radiation Oncology Services. “This procedure will eliminate the lengthy, uncomfortable hospital stay and minimize the number of treatments.”

Brachytherapy is a form of internal radiation treatment where radioactive sources are placed on or into cancer tissue. High dose rate (HDR) is a technically advanced form of brachytherapy. A high intensity radiation source is delivered with millimeter precision under computer guidance directly into the tumor killing it from the inside out while avoiding injury to surrounding normal healthy tissue. In gynecological treatments, a vaginal cylinder or a tandem and ovoids are comfortably inserted directly inside the woman’s anatomy and are used to administer the radiation.

“Our team takes a CT scan of the patient prior to the treatment to help create a specialized treatment plan specific to that patient’s needs. The treatment takes approximately 30-90 minutes depending upon the size and complexity of the implant and the activity of the source,” she explained.

Chang said the procedure is outpatient and is more accurate in delivering treatment because it is so focused and allows for a much higher, very localized dose of exposure that is designed to kill the remaining cancer cells at the site.

“Because of the success with this procedure, we will be looking toward the use of HDR brachytherapy for the treatment of lung cancer,” she said.

For more information on this new technology, visit Southern Ohio Medical Center’s Cancer Center on the web at www.somc.org/cancer

Interventional Cardiologist Jones Welcomed At SOMC

Jennifer Jones, MD, a physician specializing in interventional cardiology, has been welcomed to the medical staff of Southern Ohio Medical Center.

Dr. Jones received her medical degree from Wayne State University School of Medicine. She completed a fellowship in Heart Failure and Transplant at the University of California, San Francisco, CA., and a fellowship in Cardiovascular Disease and Interventional Cardiology at Harper University Hospital in Detroit, MI. She is board certified in Internal Medicine, Cardiovascular Disease and Interventional Cardiology.

Dr. Jones can be reached at SOMC Heart and Vascular Associates, 1735 27th St., Waller Building Suite 207, Portsmouth, OH 45662. Call (740) 356-8772 for more information.

SOMC To Host Free Nurse Refresher Course

Retired, laid-off and career-changed nurses are invited to regain confidence in the nursing profession by attending Southern Ohio Medical Center’s Nurse Refresher Course from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sept. 24 and 25 in the Gibson Building on SOMC’s East Campus, 2201 25th St., Portsmouth.

The two-day program will allow participants to review fundamentals while discovering new technology with hands-on training. Day one will consist of lectures on documentation, electronic medication records, fundamentals of nursing and an overview of equipment used throughout the hospital; day two will be held in the SSU/SOMC Simulation Lab, allowing participants to practice their renewed knowledge and skills in a simulated hospital setting.

Registration is required and can be made by calling the SOMC Workforce Development Department at 356-2733. Deadline to register is Sept. 22.

Local Student Names SOMC Wellness Hound

Wellington the Wellness Hound, Southern Ohio Medical Center’s new mascot for children’s health was named by nine-year-old Hunter Armstrong. Armstrong was surprised by the announcement by Wellington and SOMC representatives in his fourth grade classroom at Rubyville Elementary. For giving SOMC’s wellness hound a name, Armstrong will ride alongside “Welly” as the Grand Marshall in this year’s River Days Parade. More than 225 children submitted names during the contest.