Meet The Contributors

Mandy ~ I am a stay at home mom who has been on a medical roller coaster ride going from doctor to doctor trying to figure out what is wrong with me. All of the doctors agreed that there is something medically wrong with me, they just don't know what... Basically, just about every time that I go to the doctor, I wind up with a new diagnosis. It is very frustrating. I hope that some of these links will maybe help you or lead you in the right direction.

Ferd ~ I have had the honor and pleasure of practicing Internal Medicine for over 25 years. I am now enjoying sharing my thoughts and experience in the blogosphere in a number of ways. I am grateful to Mandy for including me on her excellent blog, Texas Medical Freak!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentines Day

Happy Valentines Day! This is for my favorite Valentine, best friend and husband. I couldn't ask for any better.

Ooh, you make me live
Whatever this world can give to me
It's you, you're all I see
Ooh, you make me live now honey
Ooh, you make me live

Oh, you're the best friend
That I ever had
I've been with you such a long time
You're my sunshine
And I want you to know
That my feelings are true
I really love you
(Ooh) Oh, you're my best friend

Ooh, you make me live

Ooh, I've been wandering round
But I still come back to you (still come back to you)
In rain or shine
You've stood by me girl
I'm happy at home (happy at home)
You're my best friend

Ooh, you make me live
Whenever this world is cruel to me
I got you, to help me forgive - oo oo ooh
Ooh, you make me live now honey
Ooh, you make me live

Oh, you're the first one
When things turn out bad
You know I'll never be lonely
You're my only one
And I love the thing
I really love the things that you do
Oh, you're my best friend

Oh, ooh, you make me live

I'm happy (happy at home)
You're my best friend
Oh, oh, you're my best friend
Ooh, you make me live
Oo oo ooh
You, you're my best friend

Friday, February 8, 2008

Freaky Friday ~ Will Wonders Never Cease

I have posted before that every time that I go to the doctor, I get a new diagnosis. Well, earlier this week I went to the doctor to see about my fibroid issue. I was hoping that I would qualify for a fairly new procedure for fibroids called “Doppler Guided Uterine Artery Occlusion” I included an article about it from the Oxford Journals. Anyway, the doctor told me “I have good news and bad news,” that is never good. The good news was that my fibroids had not grown any in the past two years. The bad news was that I need to have a hysterectomy and re-constructive surgery. He said besides the fibroids and the cysts, I have Uterine Prolapse. And to think, I was worried about my boobs or my bum falling later in life. Years ago, I worked with a woman that had this and had a hysterectomy. But, she is the only person that I have ever known with it. It seems like that she was in her late 30’s? I am really starting to hate going to the doctor.

The “hysterectomy” itself doesn’t bother me as much as the surgery does. I don’t do pain well and there are not many pain killers that I can take either. When I had my thyroid out, it took the surgeon and the anistegeoligist to come up with something for me to take. It worked “ok” after the swelling went down before that the pain was unbearable. The swelling was due to my bruising problem, I bruise at the drop of the hat. I always have bruises and never know where they come from. The other thing that scares me is the numbness that goes along with surgery. When I had my thyroidectomy, it took just about a year before the feeling came back in my neck. Oh, and I can’t forget my fear of something else not working after surgery. I don’t do well with percentages, when I had my biopsy for my thyroid they told me “don’t worry, only 5% of these ever come back anything.” It came back follicular thyroid cancer. Then the doctor told me only 1-3% of people that have a thyroidectomy have their parathyroid quit working. See, I am not very good with percentages.

The past few days I have been looking for information on hysterectomies and now I am more confused than I was when I started. I have found a few good patient friendly pages. One is a personal blog called “One Girl, No Uterus” and Hyster Sisters, which is an online group. Let me tell you, it was much easier finding a surgeon for my thyroid. With hysterectomies there are so many options, it is starting to make my head spin. Laparoscopic (LSH), TLH, Laparoscopic-assisted (LAVH) and Total Abdominal (traditional). And those don’t even cover the “re-construction” part.

If anyone has any good links or information please post them here or if you would rather Email Me. I have a second opinion lined up and I hope that I will be able to put this off until this summer. When school is out and I will not have to drive anywhere.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Nominated for Excellence

I’ve been chosen for the Excellent Blogger Award by Grace at All the world’s a stage…! YEA! She is one of my regular readers and I am hers.

Now, I am supposed to name 10 other people…Grace already nominated some of my favorites. Here is a list of some of my other favorites.

Daisy The Curly Cat ~ Daisy is a calico Devon Rex cat that reminds me of the cat version of Curious George the monkey. She is also an entrepreneur. Well…she tries to be. She likes to come up with new ways and ideas to catch lizards.

Can You Identify Me? Do You Know Me? ~ This blog can be hard to read, not because of the way that is written but due to the content. RJ does her part in trying to help unidentified soles find their way home. I was surprised to find out how many peoples remains never make it home to their loved ones.

Pencil Drawing Sketch Art ~ I first found Sue’s “Pencil Drawing Sketch Art” while looking at the latest EC blogs. What first caught my eye was her widget of Stevie Ray Vaughan. I am a huge fan of his. But, once I got to her blog I discovered that it was MUCH more than just Stevie Ray. She does really wonderful work. Some of my favorites are (of course) Stevie Ray, Jimmie Hendrix, Steven Tyler, Johnny Depp and Sting. Whether you are a music or art fan, this is a must see.

SneezieBreezie ~ is a very will written health blog. I always find something new and interesting. Sneezie’s other blogs are very good too.

The ramblings of an inquisitive idiot ~ Is a very well written political blog with a splash of health. This is another one of my daily reads.

Blogging About Flugpo ~ If you have not discovered, it is a great place to advertise your blog. It is a bit like Craig’s List. At Blogging About Flugpo, Kelly blogs about ads that she finds on She also has some really great contest.

Creaky Easel ~ Sue has some very exquisite work. One of my favorites is on her “Anthurium” post, this one and many of her other flowers remind me of one of my favorite artists Georgia O’Keefe. All of her work is wonderful; she is a very talented artist!

Telling It Like It Is ~ Lin has some great tips on relationships, marriage, parenting and health. Another excellent blog.

A Circle Of Women ~ Another really written blog, this has been on my daily read list since discovering Entrecard. A Circle Of Women has a great variety of topics, I am never disappointed.

Clutter Cubed ~ I need to spend an entire day studying this blog. Great tips on clutter problems. I am one of those people who, while I am not a pack-rat but…I do have problems throwing things away.

You can find the rest of my favorite Entrecard blog on my Entrecard page.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Fat Cat Super Tuesday

Today is Fat Tuesday and Super Tuesday, hence “Fat Cat Super Tuesday.” Today’s topic is the cost of health care.

The cost of health care in the US has gotten way out of hand. Universal health care has been in the news quit a bit here lately. And it got me to thinking about the cost of health care. While we are fortunate enough to have health insurance, the cost of health care can still be through the roof. Should we have universal health care here? Yes, I think we should have some form of universal coverage. I think if it is done correctly it will benefit a great deal of people.

Why? Simple the economy is in the tank, there are a lot of us that can not afford the things that we once did. In Dallas in the late 80’s and early 90’s there was a continuing education group, called FunEd. You could take a variety of classes, one of which was called “How to survive on $50-100k a year.” My husband and I used to joke about the class quite a bit. During this time we were both working, he was a computer nerd and I was in international sales. We were able to pay for numerous prescription medications for our autistic son, his many doctor’s visits and hospital stays. It was hard at times but, we still had money left over at the end of most months. There is no way that we could do this now, even though we make a lot more than we did then.

I have heard several people commentate about people not buying medical insurance when they can afford it. These people who are not buying medical insurance are said to make $75k per year. No one ever stops to add where these people live. If you are in the middle of nowhere US and make 75k, more than likely you are doing really well compared to the rest of your neighbors. But, say you live in New York City, Los Angeles, Dallas or any other large metropolitan city 75k is really nothing. If I had to choose between mortgage or rent and health insurance, I would choose a place to live. Is universal health care the answer or the only answer? I don’t know? But, I do know that something needs to be fixed when it comes to the cost of health related costs. The only way any of this is going to change is to vote for what you want. Register to vote.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Stem Cells 101

What’s the deal with stem cells anyway? Stem cells are special body cells that have the potential to become one of many different types of organs or tissues, such as bone, heart, or brain and spinal cord. This is a very exciting area of research in the field of medicine. It is possible that stem cells could be used to repair injuries to the body, or to treat diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, heart disease, diabetes, and countless other problems.

Stem cells have been identified in their natural state, and very recently, they have been created by modifying genes in normal adult skin cells. Stem cells from different sources vary in their ability to transform into other tissues. The ones with the most potential are gotten from very young embryos, 3 to 5 days old. At this stage of development, the embryo is composed of about 150 cells, each of which has the ability to become any part of the body. But the fact that this is a developing human life raises moral and ethical questions about the use of embryos for research purposes. People are divided about 50 - 50 in this regard. In general, people who favor abortion also favor the use of embryos in stem cell research, while those opposed to abortion are more respectful of their humanity. Because of the great potential for stem cells to be useful treatments, these moral and ethical questions will have to be addressed by us as a society.

Other sources of stem cells besides human embryos include umbilical cord blood, amniotic fluid, and a few are found in normal adult tissues. And as I mentioned before, researchers late last year were able to create stem cells from adult skin cells by modifying their genes. This is very exciting because it avoids the ethical questions about experimenting on developing human life.

As you can see, all of this holds great promise, and the field is just getting started. In the future we might be able to regenerate tissues that have been injured or diseased. We might be able to clone organs for transplantation. Regenerated or replaced tissues and organs would cure diseases and restore normal function.

In the next installment, I will focus on the current state of the art of stem cell research in the area of Parkinson’s disease. Stay tuned.

Chocoholics Rejoice!

Today is National Wear Red Day, when Americans wear red to show support of women’s heart disease. Hear disease is the #1 killer of women in the US. One and four women die of heart disease. The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute is a great resource for women’s heart health.

You may be wondering, “What in the world does this have to do with chocolate?” Well, the other day in the mail I received the latest copy of Heart Healthy Living. The front cover immediately caught my eye! CHOCOLATE! “Keep the treats and lower your blood pressure”. I am not a huge chocoholic but, I do enjoy chocolate (my youngest is the chocoholic in the family).

In one of the “chocolate” articles titled “Cocoa May Fight Hypertension”. WOW! I thought, I felt like a kid in a candy store! Then…I read on, 30 tiny little calories =( of dark chocolate you can eat daily to help reduce blood pressure without affecting body weight! Yea, all is not lost! The research was done at the University Hospital of Cologne. Germany…not the US figures, figures but that is for another post.

Anyway, here are some “heart healthy” chocolate recipe’s that I found on Heart Healthy Living. Chocolate Ricotta Mousse, Frozen Hot Chocolate, Heart Healthy Chocolate Cake

Photo thanks to Flikr