Vein illumination improves IV and blood draw accuracy

AccuVein illumination device.

AccuVein illumination device.

Staff at St. Anthony’s Medical Center are now using AccuVein illumination devices to insert IVs and draw blood with greater accuracy.

Nurses using the device have stated, “‘I saw veins I normally would not have seen without it and I got the IV in,’ and ‘I saw there were no good veins, so I consulted IV Safety,'” says Carrie Kollar, R.N., Vascular Access Specialist on the IV Safety Team. “Our patients, their families and our nurses love it. Even doctors are using it.”

The Auxiliary of St. Anthony’s donated four of the devices, which are available to all areas of the medical center.

Leave a comment

Filed under Health, News

Dr. Majumdar joins St. Anthony’s

Surajit Majumdar, M.D.

Surajit Majumdar, M.D.

St. Anthony’s Medical Center is pleased to welcome Surajit Majumdar, M.D., to St. Anthony’s Physician Organization. Dr. Majumdar joins St. Anthony’s from Phelps County Regional Medical Center in Rolla, Mo., where he served as the Chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine. He is board certified in internal medicine and earned his Doctor of Medicine from the Institute of Post-Graduate Medical Education and Research at the University of Calcutta, India.

Dr. Majumdar is now part of the team at St. Anthony’s Primary Care Consultants located at 12700 Southfork Road, Suite 280, St. Louis, MO, 63128. He joins Dr. Bryan Burns, Dr. Catherine Lowder, and nurse practitioners Sarah Guillaume and Jessica Thomure.

Leave a comment

Filed under News

2014 flu season has an early start

fluThe 2014 flu season is starting a little earlier than last year, with a spike in the number of confirmed flu cases in the last week of November.

St. Anthony’s Medical Center had 91 positive flu tests in its Emergency Department and its four Urgent Care Centers in the last week of November, almost three times as many as the 34 cases in the previous week. The total number of 140 flu cases at St. Anthony’s for the month of November compares to just six cases in November 2013. The 2013-2014 flu season did not hit until December.

“While this is an earlier start to flu season compared to last year, it’s not unusual,” said Evelyn Young, M.D., Medical Director of St. Anthony’s Urgent Care Centers. “The flu season can actually start as early as October.”

So far, this flu season is hitting children harder than adults, with more than 60 percent of the patients being younger than 20 years. Most flu patients at St. Anthony’s did not receive a flu vaccine.

“Even though flu season is underway, it’s not too late to be vaccinated,” said Dr. Young. “The flu season typically lasts into February or March and can actually stretch as late as May, so it is definitely still worth getting vaccinated.”

“There are other things you can do to protect yourself, too,” said Dr. Young. “Focus on good hygiene, such as washing your hands, covering your mouth with the bend of your arm when you cough or sneeze, avoiding people who are sick, and staying home away from other people when you’re the one who is sick.”

Flu shots are available at any of St. Anthony’s four Urgent Care Centers.

Leave a comment

Filed under Health, News

Why Women Delay Visiting the Doctor?

St. Anthony's Medical Center physician Christine Hoffner-Owens, D.O., with son Nathan and daughter Abbey.

St. Anthony’s Medical Center physician Christine Hoffner-Owens, D.O., with son Nathan and daughter Abbey.

Men and women have different reasons for not making regular visits to their primary care physicians.

Women are born caregivers. In this hectic world, typically they put themselves last on the list to receive care, said Christine Hoffner-Owens, D.O., an Internal Medicine specialist at St. Anthony’s at Southwest Medical Center.

“A lot of women who come in haven’t seen a doctor in years, and they come in feeling very guilty, thinking I’m going to beat them up,” she said. “No guilt—let’s start from today.”

Dr. Hoffner-Owens stresses the importance of screening and reducing risk factors for potentially deadly conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure and cancers. She also strives to learn about the stressors and issues her female patients are facing.

“I try to work with them to prioritize issues and stress in their lives, identify risk factors and familial issues, and provide resources and support, whether in dealing with a learning disabled child or helping an elderly parent with diabetes,” Dr. Hoffner-Owens said.

Health risks and recommendations for both men and women.

Leave a comment

Filed under Health

Why Men Delay Visiting the Doctor?

St. Anthony's Medical Center physician Adam Fitzgerald, M.D.St. Anthony's Medical Center physician Adam Fitzgerald, M.D.

St. Anthony’s Medical Center physician Adam Fitzgerald, M.D.

Men and women have different reasons for not making regular visits to their primary care physicians.

“Men tend to hold things in, to not discuss personal matters,” said Adam Fitzgerald, M.D., of St. Anthony’s at Southfield Family Medicine. “Anytime a man asks for help, whether with directions or cholesterol, it’s seen as a sign of weakness, of not being manly.”

But it’s important for people to regularly take care of their health, even if they feel pretty healthy, Dr. Fitzgerald recommends.

Here’s why:

Early interventions yield the best outcomes, though here is no ‘one size fits all’ for screenings. The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force, for example, says there is no single, clear prostate cancer screening practice that benefits a broad group of patients. “That underscores the importance of having a health care provider help each patient navigate the health care system and make the best choices for themselves,” said Dr. Fitzgerald, who personally recommends prostate screenings for men age 50 and over, based on their family history and symptoms. “It’s important to have a candid conversation with your physician.”

Health risks and recommendations for both men and women.

Leave a comment

Filed under Health

Saved by an AED

Brett Arb with his wife, Trina, and mother, Cindy, at St. Anthony's AED distribution reception.

Brett Arb with his wife, Trina, and mother, Cindy, at St. Anthony’s AED distribution reception.

Two young girls still have their father. A wife still has her husband. A mother still has her son. All of this is possible thanks to the heroic bystanders who had access to an automated external defibrillator (AED) to save the life of a 33-year-old man.

See Brett Arb’s story and how St. Anthony’s Medical Center is working to place more AEDs in the community.

Leave a comment

Filed under Health, In the Community, News, Patient Stories

Stuff the bird, not yourself

Turkey with Stuffing

Thanksgiving comes but once a year, and we long for Grandma’s pumpkin pie and those buttery mashed potatoes and gravy. There is no reason to deprive yourself, says Heidi McClintock, a registered and licensed dietitian at St. Anthony’s Medical Center. A few small and smart changes to some of your Thanksgiving side dishes will cut calories and fat, while leaving all the flavor.

See McClintock’s tips for healthy holiday substitutions.

Leave a comment

Filed under Health