Posted on: February 20, 2014
Why Will My Newborn Get a PKU Screening?
By Martha Zavras, RN III, Northern Westchester Hospital
If you, a family member, or close friend is pregnant, it is important to know that your newborn will be screened for several serious medical conditions, as mandated by New York State. Among the conditions screened is PKU. What is this blood test for, and what do the results mean for your new baby and your family?
As a Nursery nurse, I often administer the PKU test to newborns, also explaining to parents why it must be given so early in life. PKU is the abbreviation for phenylketonuria, a metabolic disorder. In New York State, the PKU screen, which is a simple blood test, also screens for many other disorders, including thyroid problems and some types of anemia.
Posted on: February 11, 2014
Understanding Your Cholesterol Numbers (post 2 of 3)
By Robert Pilchik, MD, Chief of Cardiology at Northern Westchester Hospital
First, a short review of cholesterol basics: The two types of cholesterol in your body – low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) – behave totally differently. Over time, excess LDL in your body, largely from fatty foods you eat, builds up in your artery walls as hard plaque, narrowing these vessels and restricting blood flow to your heart and brain. This condition, atherosclerosis, is THE leading cause of heart attack and stroke. By contrast, HDL acts as a vacuum, ridding the arterial walls of cholesterol and flushing it from the body. Continue reading
Posted on: September 16, 2013
by Dr. Harlan Weinberg, Medical Director of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at NWH
Medical knowledge and information management is crucial to the delivery of health care.
“But nothing has changed clinical practice more fundamentally than one recent innovation: the Internet…Falsehoods are easily and rapidly propagated on the Internet: once you land on a site that asserts a false rumor as truth, hyperlinks direct you to further sites that reinforce the falsehood…1
As physicians, we are struggling to figure out how best to use this technology in the interests of our patients and ourselves. Although the Internet is reshaping the content of the conversation between doctor and patient, we believe the core relationship should not change…Physicians are in the best position to weigh information and advise patients, drawing on their understanding of available evidence as well as their training and experience.” (NEJM 2010; 362:1063-66; Untangling the Web — Patients, Doctors and the Internet; P. Hartzband, MD et al).
So, let’s look at some helpful suggestions that will unburden our medical internet searches: Continue reading
Posted on: August 25, 2013
Packing A Healthy Lunchbag
by Stephanie Perruzza, MS, RD, CDN, Northern Westchester Hospital
September is back-to-school month …getting organized around books, supplies and first day back-to-school outfits, etc., etc… We want to make this one task easier: Packing the lunch bag.
You know that with a healthy meal, your child gets the energy s/he needs to make it through the day and thrive. A healthy lunch can allow your child perform and study well, be more attentive in class and even maintain a healthy weight. Save these tips below and your child will keep that healthy lunch rather than ditch it or swap it for a bag of chips or soda: Continue reading
Posted on: August 19, 2013
by Amy Rosenfeld, MS, RD, CDN, Northern Westchester Hospital
Is everyone you know going gluten-free? While a gluten-free diet is trendy, it is less appropriate for weight loss but crucial in the treatment of celiac disease.
A protein found in wheat, rye, barley and most oats (although there are some certified gluten-free oat products), gluten is the base of bread products and works as an emulsifier and thickener in packaged foods. In healthy individuals, gluten is perfectly healthy. For celiac patients, however, gluten damages the small intestines, causing inflammation and malabsorption of nutrients. Over time, nutrient deficiencies and conditions can develop, including osteoporosis or poor growth in children.