WakeMed Blogs

WakeMed Voices

May 25, 2017

A new guideline was published in March by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists stating that individuals planning to start a family or pregnant should be offered carrier screening for Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA).1,2 Some questions that may come to mind are: What is SMA? What does it mean to be a carrier? How …

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May 22, 2017

There is no question that a spinal cord injury is a life-changing event.  The rehabilitation hospital/provider you choose can change your life as well.  WakeMed Rehabilitation Hospital in Raleigh, NC provides highly specialized care and therapies for people with spinal cord injuries, helping them achieve the best possible outcome and quality of life. For many …

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May 18, 2017

As the philanthropic partner of WakeMed Health & Hospitals, the WakeMed Foundation is focused on supporting the health and well-being of our community. Together, we have an impressive track record of connecting the passions of our supporters with the lifesaving care WakeMed delivers each and every day. From helping fund the construction of several key …

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May 17, 2017

This year, the WakeMed NICU is hosting a Kangaroo-A-Thon from May 8th to May 19th. The Kangaroo-A-Thon is part of a larger, nationwide Kangaroo Challenge in which hospitals from around the world compete to encourage kangaroo care between new parents and their babies. Learn more about Kangaroo Care at WakeMed. What is a Kangaroo Care? Also …

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May 16, 2017

Noise is one of the most common causes of hearing loss. Often, its effects are underestimated because the damage takes place so gradually. The risk of hearing loss depends on both the intensity and the duration of the exposure to the loud noise or music. Noise/music induced hearing loss is preventable. In fact, the average …

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May 11, 2017

I was watching the Super Bowl when I passed out. No, it wasn’t because my Patriots had fallen behind (I’m a Boston native)—it was due to a few weeks of bronchitis that I couldn’t shake and unbeknownst to me, had turned into the flu. A Trip to the Emergency Department A visit to the emergency …

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May 10, 2017

Hypertension, commonly known as high blood pressure, is the greatest risk factor for stroke.  Therefore, if you have high blood pressure, managing it can significantly decrease your chances of having a stroke. We see hundreds of people with stroke symptoms each year in WakeMed’s six adult emergency rooms (ERs).  Most of the first-time stroke patients …

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May 09, 2017

Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP) occurs when there is a weakening or tear in the pelvic floor muscles or connective tissues. This causes pelvic organs to fall downward into the vagina. This is similar to a hernia in the vaginal space. Pelvic Organ Prolapse is More Common Than You’d Think POP is a common problem. One …

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May 08, 2017

Humble. Soft Spoken. Caring. Dedicated. These are just some of the first words that come to mind when describing WakeMed’s longest-standing employee, Betty McGee – known more affectionately in the community as “Nurse Betty”. At 75 years old, Betty has worked for WakeMed for 54 years (this September) with plans to retire later this year. She’s …

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May 04, 2017

We spend a lot of time, energy and effort in medicine treating advanced chronic diseases rather than preventing illness from developing or progressing in the first place. While an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, a pound of prevention is worth a ton of cure. The main determinant of health outcomes and …

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May 03, 2017

It’s the time of year where there’s a ssssssspike in snake bites. WakeMed emergency departments typically treat approximately 100 snakebites per year. Of these, 60 percent are venomous. The other 40 percent are “dry bites” (no venom injected), or they are from harmless snakes. So far, this year, WakeMed has seen over 20 snake bites, …

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May 03, 2017

“The medical team saves lives; the rehab team restores lives.” A WakeMed Rehab occupational therapist uses this phrase to help patients and their family members understand the difference between what providers in WakeMed’s acute care hospital and providers in the WakeMed Rehabilitation Hospital do for patients who have suffered a stroke. Making Difficult Decisions About …

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May 01, 2017

Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the United States. Would you know how to tell if someone was having a stroke? It takes about two minutes to learn the signs and symptoms: Symptoms of a Stroke Some include SUDDEN: Numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg – especially on one …

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April 27, 2017

Ron Doggett was honored at the WakeMed Foundation Appreciation Gala for a lifetime of generosity. Why Giving Back Matters to Ron Doggett Ask Ron Doggett why giving back matters and you will receive a simple, yet modest answer: Service is part of his DNA, instilled in him and his four sisters by his parents, church …

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April 23, 2017

We’re celebrating National Healthcare Volunteer Week, and we want to take the opportunity to recognize the amazing support that volunteers provide to our patients, families, hospital staff and our community. Meet Asiyah Ahmad, a student at The Wake STEM Early College High School and a WakeMed volunteer. Asiyah created The Birthday Project, a program that …

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April 21, 2017

Immunizations are not just something you need to get as a child anymore.  Instead, they are an essential part of preventative care and overall well being. Get Immunized for a Healthier Life Immunizations help you live a longer and healthier life.  According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC): Immunizations prevent more than 21 …

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April 18, 2017

WakeMed and Duke are partnering to bring together Duke’s world-class cancer program and WakeMed’s surgical oncology expertise. Cancer Care Plus+, a joint operating agreement, will establish a comprehensive cancer service throughout the WakeMed system that is fully integrated with Duke Cancer Institute locations in Wake County and anchored at Duke Raleigh Hospital. Access to Cancer …

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April 17, 2017

Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) is leakage of urine that comes from physical exertion. Activities like coughing, sneezing, laughing, lifting, or running can increase pressure or “stress” to the bladder and cause leakage. SUI is fairly common and affects one out of three women over 45 years old. Women most commonly develop SUI from changes that …

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April 12, 2017

Most people have trouble understanding conversations in background noise environments. This includes people with normal hearing as well as people who have hearing loss. Persons with hearing loss can get assistance with specifically tuned amplification from an audiologist – most commonly in the form of a hearing aid. Advances in Hearing Aid Technology The most …

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April 07, 2017

Achoo! This past winter season has done its part in confusing even medical professionals. When it comes to preparing our patients for avoiding sickness, drastic changes in weather can present a challenge. Now that spring is officially upon us, we are all excited at the opportunity to spend more time outdoors. But with embracing the …

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April 04, 2017

Spring has sprung in North Carolina!  Unfortunately, that means the start of seasonal allergy season for many. With blooming flowers and budding trees come sneezes, sniffles, and itchy eyes for many sufferers of springtime allergies. For pregnant women, allergy symptoms can seem worse than normal due to increased swelling of nasal tissue. In fact, 25% …

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April 03, 2017

Before we helped establish a NICU library at WakeMed, our connection to WakeMed began with our own NICU story… During most of my pregnancy with my son, Pearson, I had placenta previa. On the morning of October 29, I was finally cleared for a vaginal delivery at his 36-week checkup. Well, apparently the check went …

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April 03, 2017

…and are you ready to let them? Every parent who has a child who wants to earn extra money by babysitting has thought through the potential “what if” scenarios to determine if they are ready for the responsibility of caring for someone else’s child. 3 Questions About Babysitting That Parents May Ask Questions parents may …

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March 28, 2017

WakeMed’s Joanna Burgess, BSN, RN, Ed Keating, BSN, RN, and Brian Klausner, MD, won Triangle Business Journal’s 2017 Health Care Heroes awards. They are among 19 honorees recognized as leaders in their field who have made significant contributions to health care. Joanna Burgess, BSN, RN, CWOCN Thanks to Joanna Burgess, BSN, RN, patients who have …

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March 28, 2017

Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are typically thought of as only impacting adults. But these diseases impact children too with similar symptoms found in adults, including: Cramps/abdominal pain Fever Diarrhea Unexplained weight loss Rectal bleeding Loss of appetite Diagnosis in children tends to be more difficult due to food allergies and/or frequent viruses that can …

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March 23, 2017

Unlike many orthopaedic issues, the risk of an ACL injury or tear does not increase with age.  Instead, ACL tears are most closely linked to participation in sports like soccer, basketball, lacrosse and skiing where there are bursts of activity and sharp turns and pivots. Who’s at Greater Risk for ACL Tears? ACL tears do …

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March 20, 2017

I love coming to work every morning and being surrounded by a team at WakeMed who has a passion for caring. Whether it is in the clinic caring for our patients or at the leadership table caring for our providers and staff, we are all focused on making the work today a little bit better …

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March 15, 2017

Working at WakeMed provides me with a unique opportunity to help distribute life saving nutrition not only to WakeMed’s patients, but to NICU babies all over the Southeast. I also get to work with an amazing group women, both staff and many volunteers, who make our mission possible. At the age of 26, Montana Wagner-Gillespie is the youngest milk bank …

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March 14, 2017

700 deaths a day.  That’s what sepsis causes in the United States.  It’s shocking.  However, survival rates increase dramatically when patients get the right treatment, right away. What Is Sepsis? Sepsis is the body’s abnormal response to infection.  The body essentially attacks itself, which can lead to tissue damage, organ failure and even death. Any …

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March 13, 2017

Your gallbladder, which is literally a bile storage tank located on the right side of your abdomen, is a bit like a computer – you take it for granted when it is working and then you spend hours trying to diagnose the problem when it is broken. Why Gallbladder Disease is Difficult to Diagnose Gallbladder …

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March 10, 2017

March is Brain Injury Awareness Month! The Brain Injury Assocation of America and local chapters conduct an awareness campaign annually to promote support and understanding of traumatic brain injury (TBI). This year the theme for Brain Injury Awareness Month is “NOT ALONE”. Raising Awareness About Traumatic Brain Injury Many people are unaware of the impact …

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March 08, 2017

What is it about Chantal Howard that makes her such a special member of the WakeMed family? Besides being an incredible leader, Chantal is a tremendous advocate for men, women, children and families who have been impacted by domestic violence in the community. Chantal comments on her work, saying: I adore interacting with the WakeMed team …

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March 07, 2017

March is Women’s History Month, and to celebrate, we’ll be highlighting some of the women who have made a difference at WakeMed throughout the month – so stay tuned! About Women’s History Month Women’s History Month is celebrated annually in the United States during the month of March as a way to highlight some of …

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March 07, 2017

We all know that a few minutes of preparation can go a long way to ensure a successful result.  Meal planning is no different.  Here are four easy tips to get you on the right track. 4 Steps to Healthier Meal Planning #1 – Plan to plan just a few meals per week. You don’t have …

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March 06, 2017

Adding Another “tool” to Fight Chronic Pain! Are you a weekend fitness warrior? Is your job physically strenuous? Are you recovering from an injury or surgery? Do you have pain that just doesn’t respond to treatment? If you answered “yes” to any or all of these questions, then trigger point dry needling (TPDN) may be …

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March 03, 2017

There is information overload on topics related to nutrition, fitness and health. Websites, blogs, books, and other media outlets have all sorts of information on various diets. It is important to know what and who to trust! There’s no ONE diet that is right for everyone, so it is important to follow a healthful eating …

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March 02, 2017

LATERA is a minimally invasive procedure for improving nasal breathing.  It is used in people that have nasal valve collapse. Nasal valve collapse occurs when the cartilage on the outside of the nose collapses when you take a deep breath. LATERA is also commonly used in conjunction with other ENT procedures to help with nasal breathing …

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March 02, 2017

March 3 – 4 is National Day of Unplugging (NDU) – a day where people are encouraged to take a day off from using digital devices and, instead, enjoy the very moments that we spend our time tweeting and instagramming about. At a time when we are inundated with technology, NDU gives us an opportunity to enjoy …

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February 27, 2017

It’s easy to lose track of your health and fitness – especially when your life is busy. Below, we take a look at some of the most common heart health mistakes that men make and how making a few minor adjustments can improve your overall cardiovascular health. Heart Health Mistakes That Men Make #1 – …

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February 24, 2017

Expertise, experience and advanced technology have been hallmarks of WakeMed’s heart program for more than 50 years. WakeMed Heart & Vascular Physicians represents the best training and the latest technologies, all backed by the WakeMed Heart Center, the region’s preferred cardiac center. Thanks to new subspecialties, innovative procedures and our growing team of talented cardiologists, …

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February 24, 2017

It is that time of year when serious flu and other highly contagious viruses are prevalent in our community. These illnesses mean full hospital beds and longer than normal wait times in emergency departments. All seven of our emergency departments are extremely busy right now – especially after physician offices close for the day and …

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February 24, 2017

When was the last time you exercised? The Effect of Fitness on the Brain There is well documented research that physical exercise has protective effects against metabolic and cardiovascular disease. Recently, the effects of exercise and the benefits to healthy brain aging has received more attention as well. The exact mechanisms for how and under …

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February 23, 2017

Bacterial Infections Antibiotics are used to treat bacterial infections. Some surgeons prescribe antibiotics to people before or after surgery to help prevent a bacterial infection. Antibiotics are prescribed by a doctor and you can only get them from a pharmacist at the pharmacy counter. Using antibiotics when they are not needed can cause harmful side …

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February 23, 2017

In Wake County, we are starting to see the pops of color on forsythia bushes and daffodils a little earlier this year due to unseasonably warm winter. It is these blooms that are the typical hallmarks of the transition from cold and flu season to spring allergy season. And, it is this time of year …

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February 22, 2017

Looking for a heart healthy, delicious dessert? Look no further! Check out this super easy, super healthy apple pomegranate crisp! Apple Pomegranate Crisp Yield: serves 4 Ingredients: 4 medium apples, peeled and cubed 1 cup pomegranate seeds 2 tablespoons brown sugar ½ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon cinnamon ½ teaspoon ginger or pumpkin spice 1 cup …

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February 21, 2017

Burn calories and elevate your heart rate in a number of creative ways. Here are some ideas to help get you moving out of your chair and towards a healthier heart! Be More Active. Here are 22 Ways How #1 – Mow the lawn. Depending on how much you have to mow as well as …

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February 20, 2017

It is true a diagnosis of poison ivy is much more common in the summer, primarily because people spend more time outdoors when the weather is warm than they do in the winter when it is cold and blustery. But, our weather this winter has been unseasonably warm and more people are spending time outside, …

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February 18, 2017

Fish are loaded with important nutrients, such as protein, vitamin D as well as omega-3 fatty acids. Aim to eat fish at least twice a week. Enjoy these two simple, healthy fish recipes any time for better heart health! Poached Cod with Potatoes & Leeks Ingredients 4 Servings 1½ pounds small Yukon Gold potatoes Kosher salt 2 …

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February 16, 2017

Influenza and other viral illness are currently widespread in the community; and when sick people visit our patients, they put both our staff and our patients at risk for infection. Help Keep Our Patients Safe: Sick Visitors Should Not Visit While WakeMed has not implemented widespread visitor restrictions this year, we strongly urge all patients, …

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February 15, 2017

Compassion has always been a hallmark of WakeMed nursing. It’s a true calling to care that makes a nurse successful at WakeMed and with his or her patients. But keeping that compassion at the forefront has become increasingly difficult for nurses. While they can and do improve clinical outcomes and help keep patients safe, new …

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