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1 Summer Sign up for our e-newsletter! See back page for more information. Do not ignore that pain in your legs Focus on balance with exercise Diabetes: Your eyes worst enemy Performing Sacred Work Every Day

2 Excellence in cardiac care Serving Southeast Texas for more than 65 years, Baptist Beaumont Hospital has had the opportunity to touch hearts and save lives. Having a long history of clinical excellence in cardiac care, we provide a variety of cardiac treatment options, ranging from radiofrequency ablation and angioplasty to coronary bypass and stent procedures. We are proud to be designated as a Certified Chest Pain Center and a Stroke Certified Hospital. A remarkable organ The human heart small, fragile and powerful is a remarkable structure. Valves constantly open and close to regulate blood flow. However, when a narrowing of the heart s aortic valve opening occurs, the normal flow of blood is restricted. This condition, called aortic stenosis (AS), is a progressive and a life-threatening disease. AS affects up to 7 percent of the population over age 65. If left untreated, 50 percent of symptomatic patients die within an average of two years. As a result, AS claims more than 25,000 lives nationwide each year. Although age is usually a factor, birth defects, rheumatic fever or radiation therapy can also cause the condition. Another option for older patients Baptist Beaumont Hospital is using a new therapy to treat AS called transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR). This minimally invasive option is designed for patients who are older, too ill or too frail to undergo conventional openheart surgery. TAVR is performed in a specialized operating room by a specially trained heart team composed of both interventional cardiologists and cardiac surgeons. Our heart team works side-byside, screening patients, consulting on care decisions and performing procedures. (See page 3 for more information about this innovative procedure.) People who undergo this less invasive form of heart valve replacement typically have a quicker recovery and a significant improvement in quality of life. If you or a loved one needs advanced cardiac care, know your heart is in the right place at Baptist Beaumont Hospital. For more information, please call our Heart Hotline at (409) 212-TAVR (8287) to schedule an appointment in our Heart and Valve Clinic. Sincerely, Gerald Bryant, DNP, RN, NEA-BC Images on any of these pages may be from one or more of these sources: 2014 Thinkstock, 2014 istock, 2014 Fotolia. 2 SUMMER 2014

3 Help for valvular heart disease About 1.5 million people in the United States suffer from aortic stenosis (AS), one of the most common and progressive diseases affecting the aorta one of the heart s four main valves. The disease typically affects older adults, as a result of scarring or calcium deposits on the valve flap. This buildup causes a narrowing of the valve and reduces the amount of blood the heart can pump throughout the body. Age-related AS often begins in those older than age 60, with symptoms appearing in people 70 to 80 years old. Diagnosis and treatment Healthcare providers use an echocardiogram to diagnose AS. If symptoms are mild or nonexistent, a person with AS may be monitored to watch for any change in his or her condition. If symptoms are severe, a valve repair or replacement may be recommended. Physicians with the Heart and Valve Center at Baptist Beaumont Hospital offer a variety of treatments for AS. Patients who are older and not good candidates for open-heart surgery may benefit from a minimally invasive treatment called transcatheter valve replacement (TAVR). During the procedure, the surgeon accesses the diseased valve through the femoral artery in the leg or the left ventricular apex of the heart. Patients who undergo TAVR often have a quicker recovery, dramatic improvement in their symptoms and an improved quality of life. Your trusted partner in heart care If you or your loved one requires a heart valve replacement, the clinical team with the Heart and Valve Center at Baptist Beaumont Hospital will guide you through the entire process, from initial consultation to follow-up! appointments. For more information or to receive a referral, call (409) 212-TAVR (8287). Symptoms of AS Many people with aortic stenosis have no symptoms until the disease has progressed, causing significantly reduced blood flow to the heart. According to the American Heart Association, symptoms of AS include: pain, pressure or a tightness in the chest syncope, also called fainting heart palpitations shortness of breath, especially reduced ability to perform regular daily activities 3

4 Healthconnect A secure health information exchange is coming to Southeast Texas Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas is one of 24 hospitals in our region participating in Healthconnect, a groundbreaking, secure health information exchange (HIE). Healthconnect was established in 2010 through a grant from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. This 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization is governed by a volunteer board of directors that eventually will serve the residents, hospitals and physicians in our region. Healthcare providers using Healthconnect will be able to safely send and receive critical health information about patients to improve the quality of care while keeping the cost of care affordable. Recognized by InformationWeek as one of the nation s leading HIEs, Healthconnect will: allow authorized providers to access and view a patient s medical history enable healthcare providers to compose, view and manage messages within the exchange provide instant access to radiology images from participating facilities offer hospitals access to acute care medication histories to ensure accurate prescribing Watch for more information about this exciting venture in future issues of Healthy Dose. On-the-go health tools Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas now offers an easy-to-use mobile site. There is nothing to download! Simply enter into your browser from your phone or mobile device and you will be instantly redirected to the mobile site, which offers: Find A Physician: Search by physician name, specialty or facility. Visitor Guidelines: Useful information for hospital visitors. Our Facilities: Get contact information and directions from Google Maps. Contact Us: One-touch access to important phone numbers. Use Health Reminders to easily manage prescriptions, appointments, immunization reminders and more! Access Health Reminders at from your computer or any mobile device. 4 SUMMER 2014

5 Do not ignore that pain in your legs It could be CVI Before After If you have ongoing aching pain in your legs, legs that tire easily or leg heaviness that gets worse as the day progresses, you could be suffering from a condition known as chronic venous insufficiency or CVI. The uphill battle CVI is a common condition that occurs more frequently in women than in men. To understand the problem, think of the body s circulatory system as a winding road. Arteries are one-way roads that carry blood away from the heart in a downhill direction. Veins carry oxygen-rich blood in the opposite direction toward the heart. To reduce the extra pumping force needed to return blood to the heart on the uphill climb, veins contain valves that propel the blood and prevent it from backwashing. If the veins fail to channel the blood properly, blood leaks and pools in the ankles and feet. Leg injuries or blood clots can also trigger this condition. It s also more likely to occur as people age or become overweight. People with CVI most often experience swelling, chronic pain, varicose veins and a progressive degeneration and thickening of the skin near the ankle. Help for aching legs Your primary care physician may refer you to an interventional radiologist to determine whether you have CVI. He or she will use ultrasound to examine the blood flow in your legs. If you are diagnosed with the condition, vein ablation may be recommended. During this minimally invasive procedure, the interventional radiologist will guide a thin catheter into the affected vein. A laser or radiofrequency energy is then used to heat the vein and seal it closed. The diseased vein will shrink and improve in appearance. Other healthy veins will re-establish normal blood flow throughout the leg. Injection sclerotherapy is another option your physician may recommend to treat some varicose and spider veins. A special solution is injected into the vein through a fine needle. The solution shrinks the vein, helping it disappear. Before After Before After Look for the signs Symptoms of chronic venous insufficiency include: swelling of the lower extremities a dull achiness, heaviness or cramping in the legs or ankles discoloration of the skin on the ankles varicose veins skin ulcers Uncover your legs! The Vein Center at Baptist Beaumont Hospital offers a variety of treatments for chronic venous insufficiency and varicose veins. For more information about our Great Strides Program visit or call (409) ! 5

6 Focus on balance with exercise As we age, maintaining balance and flexibility becomes more important than ever. Falls are a major cause of injury in adults ages 65 and older. You can reduce your risk of falling by taking preventive steps, such as doing exercises designed to improve your balance and flexibility and making small adjustments to your home. Evidence-based therapies for balance disorders Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas offers vestibular rehabilitation therapy at both our Beaumont and Orange Outpatient Therapy locations. Our clinically trained staff provides the latest evidence-based treatments. Vestibular rehabilitation is a specialized form of therapy that alleviates symptoms of vestibular disorders. Our staff creates individualized programs to retrain the body s awareness senses that correspond with the inner ear, vision and/or receptors in muscles and joints. Therapies may include: balance exercises eye movement exercises flexibility training strengthening exercises Exercises for balance Good balance enables you to: walk with stability get up from a chair without falling climb stairs without tripping bend over without falling Here are two exercises to help maintain and improve your balance: Standing on one foot. Start by holding on to a sturdy chair. Stand on one foot and hold the position for 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times with each leg. Once you are confident, try letting go of the chair, but remain near it in case it is needed. Walking heel-to-toe. Find a spot where you can walk approximately 20 steps without interruption (a hallway or large open room works well). Focus on a spot in front of you and walk 20 steps in a straight line with the heel of your foot touching the toe of your other foot with each step. Speak with your doctor Falls do not have to be a part of getting older. Always consult your doctor before beginning any exercise program. Stay strong For more information on vestibular rehabilitation therapy, call the Baptist Beaumont Hospital Vestibular Rehabilitation Program at (409) or visit 6 SUMMER 2014

7 Diabetes: Your eyes worst enemy Could that blurry vision you have been experiencing be due to your diabetes? High blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood sugar levels the hallmark of unchecked diabetes wreaks havoc on your body, including your vision. What is going on with my eyes? Several eye conditions have been linked to people with diabetes, including retinopathy, glaucoma and cataracts. These can lead to severe vision loss and blindness. Diabetic retinopathy affects almost half of people with diabetes, making it the most common of the diabetic eye diseases and a leading cause of blindness in American adults, according the National Institutes of Health. Ranging in severity from mild to advanced, diabetic retinopathy is caused by damage to the blood vessels in the eye, which later become blocked or swell and leak fluid. Glaucoma is the result of increased fluid pressure inside the eye, leading to optic nerve damage and vision loss. People with diabetes face almost twice the risk of glaucoma compared to the general population. Cataracts occur as the eye s lens becomes cloudy, resulting in blurred vision. Cataracts occur in people with diabetes at younger ages than people without diabetes. Unfortunately, eye damage caused by diabetes does not cause symptoms in the early stages. That is why it is crucial to have a comprehensive eye exam, including dilation of the eye, at least once a year. According to the National Eye Institute, even people with advanced diabetic retinopathy may be able to reduce their risk of blindness by 95 percent if they receive timely and appropriate care. When people do experience symptoms, they usually notice changes to their vision. Maybe they have trouble reading, their vision is blurred or they experience disturbances such as rings around lights, dark spots or flashing lights. If you have any of these symptoms, schedule an eye exam. Eye damage such as diabetic retinopathy is not curable, but treatments do exist to help preserve your vision and stop the damage from progressing. You can also do your part to help put the brakes on vision loss by getting an annual eye exam and keeping your blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol under control. Need help managing diabetes? The Diabetes Management Program at Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas, recognized by the American Diabetes Association, focuses on behavioral strategies for patients with diabetes. For more information, contact Helen Simmons, BSN, RN-BC,! Diabetes Education Coordinator at (409) or visit 7

8 Baptist Beaumont Hospital P.O. Box 1591 Beaumont, Texas Nonprofit Organization US POSTAGE PAID Lebanon Junction, KY Permit No. 115 For questions or comments, please us at ycle-logo_2options_v2.ai Sign up to receive Healthy Dose online! Visit Printed With Soy Ink Printed With Soy Ink to receive the online version of Healthy Dose. You will receive Please Recycle This Publication all of the great information that s inside the magazine, plus bonus health and wellness tips! Please Recycle This Publication Printed With Soy Ink Please Recycle This Publication 2014 Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas Printed With Soy Ink Please Recycle This Publication

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