SOMC occupational therapists address unique needs with customized plans

Debra Page was walking out her front door in November when she suddenly fell, landing on her hand and breaking her elbow. When she arrived at the hospital, she got more bad news: the fall had also severed an artery.

“Having injuries to both my hand and my elbow have made this a unique situation,” Page said. “If I had one injury or the other, it wouldn’t have been nearly as hard to take care of.”

Page knew she needed help recovering from the injuries, and she placed her trust in Southern Ohio Medical Center. She began going through occupational therapy in Wheelersburg and, though it was a struggle early on, she has been thrilled with the results.

“Starting out, my hand was a mess. I couldn’t even hold a ball, let alone do anything with it,” Page said. “But the staff pushed me. They’ve been great, and everything along this experience has been very positive.”

Page has had five operations to help correct her injuries and continues to go through therapy.

SOMC’s occupational therapists pride themselves on their ability to deal with the unique needs of various patients. Their first objective in any situation is to understand the degree of an injury, disease or developmental anomaly and how it has impacted a patient’s everyday life. They then create creative, individualized plans to help the patient get back to their normal routine.

In Page’s case, she was also pleased with how well SOMC was able to work her therapy around her other appointments and obligations.

“I’ve had no problems,” Page said. “If I can’t be there a certain day or I need to work around doctor’s appointments, they’re able to accommodate me.”

To learn more about SOMC Rehabilitation, call 740-356-7438 or visit

May recognized as Asthma Awareness Month

The month of May is recognized as Asthma Awareness Month, drawing attention to the more than 25 million people in the United States– including more than 7 million children – who suffer from asthma.

Asthma is a chronic lung disease that can be worsened by factors such as allergies, respiratory infections and exposure to environmental toxins. Although asthma can start at any age, it is the third leading cause of hospitalization among children under the age of 15 and a leading cause of school absences, according to the American Lung Association.

“Asthma cannot be cured, but it can be managed,” Southern Ohio Medical Center’s Dr. Elie Saab said. “It is important to raise awareness of the disease and help people with asthma get access to the information and resources they need to continue living happy, healthy lives.”

Local asthma patients may benefit from the recent relocation of the SOMC Pulmonary Diagnostic Lab, which is now in Suite 107 of the Waller Building on the hospital’s main campus.  Southern Ohio Medical recently added an allergist to the staff, Mid-West Allergy, whose office will be opening soon. The Interventional Pulmonary Diagnostic Lab is also offering the option of thermoplasty for refractory adult asthma. For more information, call (740) 356-8485.

Pleasure Guild donates $10,000 to SOMC

Pleasure Guild donates to SOMCSouthern Ohio Medical Center recently held a banquet to thank its volunteers for their hours of service to the hospital and its patients. During the banquet, the Pleasure Guild showed its gratitude for SOMC by donating $10,000 to be used for the purchase of patient equipment. Seen here, President and CEO Randy Arnett accepts the donation while surrounded by members of the Pleasure Guild.

Scioto Guild donates to Cancer Compassion Fund


SOMC Scioto Guild

The Scioto Guild recently donated $7,000 to the SOMC Cancer Compassion Fund during a banquet held to honor and thank the many volunteers at Southern Ohio Medical Center. The SOMC Cancer Compassion Fund helps provide support for patients undergoing active cancer care. The funds are used for patient assistance needs such as utilities, medications, transportation and other common necessities. In this photo, SOMC Cancer Center Director Wendi Waugh is seen accepting the donation while surrounded by members of the Scioto Guild.


SOMC receives 2013 Friends of 4-H Award

Jo Williams and Eric Kephas

Southern Ohio Medical Center has received the 2013 “Friends of 4-H” Award in recognition of the hospital’s ongoing support and contributions to the youth program.

In addition to other donations and sponsorships, SOMC gave $1,000 to Scioto County 4-H as part of their ‘Community Valentine’ Facebook poll in February. Seen here, Scioto County 4-H Extension Agent Jo Williams presents Eric Kephas of SOMC Community Relations with a plaque recognizing SOMC as a “Friend of 4-H.”

Sleep Diagnostic Center offers treatment for sleep apnea patients

Sleep apnea is a disorder that affects an estimated 22 million Americans, many of whom who are unaware of their condition. For patients who suffer from the disorder or suspect that they may, the Sleep Diagnostic Center at Southern Ohio Medical Center is ready to provide care.

Treatment for sleep apnea often begins because an individual has general complaints about their sleep, but other times it comes because of something noticed by a partner or spouse.

“On many occasions, patients will come to us after being told that they snore loudly or stop breathing during the night,” Michelle Lyons, supervisor of sleep disorders in the SOMC Sleep Lab, said.

Cases of sleep apnea can range in severity, with some cases requiring no treatment while others can become life threatening. It is also known to complicate other existing conditions.

“It’s very important to seek help if you suspect you may suffer from sleep apnea,” Dr. Glenn Burris said. “Sleep apnea can worsen high blood pressure, congestive heart failure and type-II diabetes. It has also been linked to stroke and can make it more difficult to lose weight.”

Anyone who suspects they may suffer from sleep apnea can learn more by contacting the SOMC Sleep Diagnostic Center at 740-356-8822. Additional information can also be obtained at or by liking SOMC on Facebook at

Hike for Hospice set for May 18; t-shirts on sale now

The 27th annual Hike for Hospice will take place at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, May 18 at the SOMC Hospice Center. Check-in will begin at 8:30 a.m.

Participants of the hike raise funds by asking friends to sponsor an amount per kilometer walked or by giving an outright donation. Participants also can join in groups of three or more, presenting banners, shirts or other forms of team-promotion.

Each team will receive one complimentary 8×10 photo and all hikers and supporters will be eligible for various prizes, which will be presented at the end of the hike.

Hike for Hospice T-shirts are available and can be purchased from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 29 – May 1 in the Lobby on the Main Campus or from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 29 – May 17 in the Gibson Building on the East Campus. Cost per shirt is $12 for sizes S—XL or $13 for sizes XXL—XXXL in either orange, sapphire or white. Cash and check will be accepted.

Early registration is encouraged for the event but hikers can also register the day of. For more information, please call 740-356-2651.

Hoops for Hope nets $3,700 for SOMC Hospice

Mike Trivisonno and Marty CochenourMarty Cochenour has donated proceeds from the Richard Cochenour Hoops for Hope Memorial Benefit to SOMC Hospice for the third consecutive year. The 2013 donation totaled $3,700. The benefit was named in honor of Marty’s late father and includes events such as a Chinese auction, a 50/50 drawing and an NCAA Men’s Final Four basketball party. Seen here, Hospice Social Worker Mike Trivisonno accepts the check from Marty Cochenour on behalf of SOMC Hospice.

Daisy Troop 339 donates Girl Scout cookies to SOMC Hospice

Daisy Troop 339 of Wheelersburg, OhioDaisy Troop 339 recently donated 113 boxes of Girl Scout cookies to SOMC Hospice. The troop is led by Becky Conn and Jessie Conley and based out of Wheelersburg. The 113 boxes of cookies were donated to support SOMC Hospice patients and staff. For more information, or to find out how to make your own donation to Hospice, call 740-353-2567 or visit