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Open House

Posted on October 24, 2011 at 2:40 PM Comments comments (0)

 When a person changes something about their outward appearance, whether it's updating their wardrobe, changing their hairstyle, or even opting for cosmetic surgery, it is oftentimes the result of a change that's happening within. The same can also be said for a business. For some, the changes are all on the surface while it's still business-as-usual behind the scenes. For us, the changes are reflective of what we want to present to our patients and the community, and also of where we want to go in the future.

 October 20th marked the unveiling of our newly-renovated space at PRN. We had many visitors at our open house, some of whom have caught glimpses of the transformation of our space from neighboring offices. These changes include the addition of two exam rooms, an original hand-painted mural by local Wichita artist Scott Korth, and a completely redecorated lobby by John Nevitt.

 Open house was not only a chance for us to reconnect with friends and associates; it was a chance to meet new people as well. Drs. Lara Pollock and Shelly Callahan were on hand to talk to the invitees about wellness through oriental medicine, acupuncture, and therapeutic massage. Both Pollock and Callahan sublease offices within our suite and, although they are not employed by, or affiliated with PRN, their presence at our location illustrates the diversity of medicine as well as an opportunity for those who wish to explore alternative therapies.

 What we ultimately hope our guests took away from the open house is a feeling of warmth from our staff and a sense of always being welcome. Whether it’s to inquire about medical research or just visit and have a cup of coffee, we welcome the opportunity to get to know YOU! Thank you to all who gave us that chance last week.

If it's too loud, you're too old....but what about your cilia???

Posted on September 9, 2011 at 9:55 AM Comments comments (0)

If you have been within 6 feet of me this past week you would have heard me talking about my "loud experiences".  It seems that my ears are getting more sensitive than in the past???  I will give you a brief summary of the situation:

We were in a local ice cream place on a Saturday night.  This place could not have been bigger than 25' by 25'.  They had a nice guitarist playing and had her hooked up to a mic and speakers.  The music was consequently resonating throughout the place.  It was nice music but it totally trumped any family conversation or even logistical conversation that may be happening. 

So often I hear cars with the music so loud that I hear the words clearly several cars away.  While I think as an American you should listen to any music you want I also don't want to be forced to listen to your choice.  While I am sitting in the car at a stop light I am a captive audience with little choice to do anything other than listen to it when it is that loud.    :mad:                                    

  

Aside from the 1st Amendment issue there is a hearing health issue that I wonder how many of us are blowing right past.  If you ask anyone who has hearing issues (and you will probably have to ask them loudly, in a certain tone and without additional background noise) they will tell you that living with hearing deficits is a frustrating existance.  Thank goodness for hearing technology today as the hearing aids are at least not such an eye sore and so cumbersome to handle.  They also have better technology to block out or filter out background noise.  Still they have to insert the device(s) into their ears every morning if they want to enjoy conversation, listening to music, the TV or the birds singing outside.

So what is my point?  The point is that much of our hearing loss can be prevented.  Unless you have had chronic infections, brain damage or a congenital condition, hearing loss is often caused by exposure to chronic lound noises.  100% of noise-induced hearing loss is preventable.  The following was copied from www.medicinenet.com.  It gives you some points of reference:

Regular exposure of 110 decibels (and higher) for more than one minute risks permanent hearing loss.

No more than 15 minutes of unprotected exposure of 100 decibels is recommended.

Prolonged exposure to any noise above 90 decibels can cause gradual hearing loss!

•Rock concerts and firecrackers are 140 decibels!

•Loud bass in cars (when other cars can feel the vibration and hear the noise) and snowmobiles are 120 decibels!

•A chainsaw is 110 decibels

•Wood shop is 100 decibels

•Lawn mowers and motorcycles are 90 decibels

•City traffic noise is 80 decibels

•Normal conversation is 60 decibels

•Refrigerator humming is 40 decibels

So people, do your ears a favor and dial down the volume!  Unplug! 

 Listen to crickets more often!  Silence can inspire.  You might actually hear your inner self and it might actually have been trying to tell you stuff for a while now! 

If you choose to not dial down take heart that this is an issue that has top research priority in the regulatory bodies...which means we hope to find better answers for hearing loss for you.  :)

Take care and I hope you all hear some beautiful things this weekend! kt

East meets West, Semantics and Can't we just all play together nicely?

Posted on September 2, 2011 at 8:30 AM Comments comments (0)

This week PRN welcomed a suite mate:  Lara Pollock.  She is a graduate from the Kansas College of Chinese Medicine.  Her practice is growing and so she needed a bigger, more accessible place.  I know Lara from my church and have been her client as well.  I know of her high standards and deep compassion and commitment to caring for people.  She is smart as a tack too!!  I hope her time here brings many opportunities for her.

We welcomed her with a luncheon with my staff that elicited many questions.  My staff here does research on traditional medicince.  How will this work?  I guess I take the stand that if I need care I want it ALL:  traditional and all other alternatives to chose from. We all know that some medications work and about side effects.  We also know that there are some conditions that respond beautifully with mainstream, traditional treatments.  But wouldn't it be great if some of the other therapies could be considered to increase efficacy, decrease the side effects or the intensity of the side effects?  What if you could get good benefits without the cost of some medications? 

When I counsel patients here in the clinic I am very careful about recommending things to them.  They are in a study, after all, and if they do something that radically changes things, data is skewed.  Bad data = drugs on the market that shouldn't be or drugs NOT on the market that should be.  So I weigh out what is best for the person and the situation.  Utimately I give the decision over to the patient.  That patient is the only one that has to live with that body without escape after he/she leaves my office.  So they get to make decision:  the study, suggested treatment 1(which may or may not be a prescription drug) or follow up with their primary care provider....I like that title:  primary care provider.  Allows for more than an MD to be considered as one that is your main source of care.

Speaking of titles!  So Lara has a degree from the college so she practices Eastern-based medicine, specifically in her case, accupunture and herbology.  In the state of Kansas there is not currently a licensure for this practice.  In New Mexico there is and she has taken the exam and passed.  So if you spot her in New Mexico you can say, "hey, Dr. Pollock" (vs. Dr. Lara as to not be confused with less reputible 'doctors' :)).  Somewhat annoying to those in the profession but it is the environment they live.  The nursing profession has similar issue with titles, etc.  Now we have a doctorate of clinical nursing so you could have a 'Dr. nurse'....or something.  So far I haven't heard any guidance on the proper way to address these folks.

Knowing the titles and credentials is important to me.  I feel that for someone who has a title there are a set expectations that I can have of that person.  I know not everyone meets them but at least I know the starting point of the relationship.  Nor do I diminish the importance of one that has less alphabet soup behind their name but if you are flaunting the soup you better have the muster behind it.  I HATE calling a doctor's office for my own personal needs and getting put through to Dr. SoAndSo's nurse only to find out I am speaking to a medical assistant (MA).  NOT the same; good, but NOT a nurse.  Are you a doctor?  Great!  Of what nature?  An MD, DO, DC, DDS, DVM, PhD, DNP, ScD, Pharmd, JD, OD, DBD, EdD, O.T.D, DPT?????  This list does really go on. 

The up side of this is that there are standardized titles.  At least you can call someone out if they are using inappropriate credentials.  You can't just say you are a QOE and expect people to respect and understand that you are indeed the Queen of Everything.  We can pretend, but that is our own little world.  We had a situation in the office that struck that chord this week too.  For our name tags we wanted to put SCA on someone's badge to make it look more important than 'just' a study coordinator assistant.  My friends, when you see 'assistant' on anyone's title KNOW that this person is one of most important people on the team.  Without our assistants here at the office we would certainly be inefficient and crazy!

I hope everyone has a great 3-day weekend and spends a minute pondering on the Labor we do everyday.  Each person is highly important in our workforce despite the specific titles.  We are all in this big sand box together and we all bring our gifts, talents, celebrations and baggage that make it so fun!

Chronic pain by Kim

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 8:20 AM Comments comments (3)

Several years ago I was 'fortunate' enough to experience life with chronic pain.  For 8 months I had unexplained muscle pain in my legs that would be so bad I could hardly manage stairs.  It interfered with my sleep.  I was irritable and cranky much of the day.  I remember lying in bed and wondering if I could look to a future of this type of pain for the rest of my life.  I was 30 years old at the time I had a hard time wrapping my brain around that concept.  I wasn't suicidal but looking forward was totally incomprehensible.

We have a chronic pain study now at our office and will have 4 more by the end of October this year.  This is not our first experience working with patients that deal with pain EVERY minute of their lives.  But we never lose our compassion for them nor our complete admiration that they still continue to function and do what they are able to do. Some of them have mastered the poker face and put on a smile despite the fact that walking to the door is agony to them. 

Chronic pain beats one down, physically, mentally and emotionally.  It takes your 'mojo'!  After time a person chooses to 'ignore' as much as possible or they would be consumed by the pain.  This is why it is hard to assess chronic pain patients to get an objective measurement of their pain (you know, the scale of 1-10...1 being very little and 10 being the worst pain you ever have felt).  Really?  If chronic pain patients rated it as they had felt it in the beginning they would all be walking around in remorse at a 10.  They can't remember what it is like to NOT be in pain. 

What do people with chronic pain need?  From what I can remember I wanted less stimulation: noise, light and touch. I wanted to be reassured that this pain would not be written off for me to deal with all my own.  Most of all I needed to be validated.  I was in pain.  It hurts.  Don't feel sorry for me but don't patronize me or worse tell me it is in my head....that is another blog! :)

I would like to hear some thoughts from those that deal with chronic, debiliating pain.  Let us hear your words so we can appreciate what you do every day.

Welcome to the PRN blog!

Posted on June 16, 2011 at 2:40 PM Comments comments (0)

 Thank you for visiting our new website. Hopefully, you have found the information on this site useful, the links helpful, and the layout of the site easy to navigate. For those of you already acquainted with PRN, you will notice that the website isn't the only thing that has changed. Last November, PRN celebrated its tenth year in business, a year that also marked the start of Kim Talbot's role as sole owner of PRN.

 

 In the months since, PRN has joined the ranks of other independently-owned companies that have survived the economic downturn. It has been through a mix of perseverance, decision-making, and luck that this has been possible. This process has not been without its transitions, however, as new faces have replaced familiar ones and long-running studies closed and new ones began. Other changes include a complete remodel of our lobby and the addition of an extra exam room and multi-purpose space. 

 

 Let us know what you think. The purpose of this blog is to open a dialogue about the subjects posted on it and to answer questions about clinical research. I encourage all who visit this site to subscribe by clicking on the link http://www.prnofkansas.com/contactus.htm in order to make the best use of the features it offers and to get the latest updates on our studies.

 


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