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HealthFocused

Educational health information to improve your well-being.

Posts in Joint

Woman at a chiropractor to help with back pain

Managing Chronic Pain Without Opioids

October 15, 2017

Nearly one in five adults experiences chronic pain that interferes with their daily activities. For many years, opioids have been used to treat chronic pain. However, in most cases, opioids are a poor choice for treating long-term pain. Tolerance and an opioid abuse epidemic are causing people to look for other options for treating chronic pain.Continue Reading

Woman exercising outside and drinking water from a water bottle

Go the Distance with Hydration

August 31, 2017

Harrowing tales of being lost at sea have always captured our imaginations. Who can forget Tom Hank's portrayal of a shipwreck survivor in the movie Castaway? In all these tales, finding water is a vital, primal need that makes the difference between life and death. In fact, water is more important than food in a survival situation. Your body is unable to function long without it. The human body is 65% water. Your brain is around 70% water, and your lungs are nearly 90% water. For proper body function, you need to replace about 2.5 quarts each day by consuming food and liquids. Hopefully,...Continue Reading

Joint Center volunteer Andy Norris

In Synch with Helping Others: Joint Center Volunteer Andy Norris

April 21, 2017

For the past two years, Andy Norris, a "retired" pharmacist who works full-time, has spent every other Wednesday at Augusta Health's Joint Center. His joints are doing OK; he's there for another reason. Andy is a volunteer, working side-by-side with the therapy staff to help patients with the exercises that will get them back to living full lives as quickly as possible. Andy works regularly with Judy Knick, PTA; Michelle Cupp, PTA; and Brad Gray, Physical Therapy Technician. He is considered part of the team, and the team is a well-oiled machine. In group therapy, as the patients progress...Continue Reading

Joint Center Five Star Quality Award

Five Star Quality: The Augusta Health Joint Center

March 31, 2017

When talking about the quality of movies, restaurants or hotels, a five-star rating indicates top-notch performance and service. A similar rating system exists for healthcare, and the Augusta Health Joint Center has been rated a 5-Star program by HealthGrades for both 2016 and 2017 in Joint Replacement (hip and knee). This 5-Star rating means there were superior outcomes for patients who had their hips or knees replaced at Augusta Health. That means fewer complications, a shorter length of stay, and a high number of patients discharging to their homes, not other facilities. In fact, in the...Continue Reading

Thomas Glover in physical therapy after bilateral knee replacement.

Doubling Down on Knee Replacement: Augusta Health Joint Center Patient

March 29, 2017

When faced with the need to have both of his knees replaced, Tom Glover of Augusta County went with an efficient strategy with a kind of 'get 'er done' attitude: He had both replaced at the same time. "I knew both knees needed to be done," explained Mr. Glover. "I'm basically healthy, but my knee pain was pretty constant, I was bowlegged and I'd even shrunk a bit. But it just seemed that we were always busy, and it was never the right time. I like to hunt in the fall and garden in the summer. Our eight grandchildren have many activities, and we like to be a part of all that. It just seemed...Continue Reading

Hip Replacement Patient Cathy Crist on the golf course.

Shooting from the Hip: A Patient at Augusta Health's Joint Center

March 21, 2017

One month after having her hip replaced at Augusta Health’s Joint Center, Cathy Crist shoveled snow. But she had already resumed some of her regular activities on a more limited basis: she'd already walked a mile and done some gentle yoga. Crist, who lives in New Market, explained, "I'm really an active person. I golf and swim, bike and hike. But when my hip deteriorated to the point that I couldn't walk up a hill or stairs without chronic pain, I knew I needed more than the cortisone injections I'd been taking. Two of my cousins had joint replacements at Augusta Health, so I knew first-hand...Continue Reading

A woman sitting in a car with her legs hanging out the window

How High Heels are Affecting More Than Just Your Feet

March 2, 2017

Those stylish 4-inch heels you handpicked to set off your dress at your next social gathering will have a lasting impact long after people have forgotten your stunning outfit. You already know how your feet ache after a long night in high heels, but you may not be aware of the other ways in which you're impacting your health. Why High Heels Cause So Many Problems When you wear high heels you are repositioning your body's posture to mimic what it's like to walk down a steep hill, causing several key changes: Down force is placed on the balls of your feet instead of being evenly distributed...Continue Reading

Doctor examining a patient's knee

Orthopedics 101: Osteoarthritis of the Knee

February 24, 2017

There are a number of different injuries and ailments that can lead to knee pain and, for the majority of them, ignoring the pain is not going to make it go away. In fact, if you're suffering from a degenerative disease like osteoarthritis of the knee, your pain will continually get worse the longer you put off treatment. Identifying and treating osteoarthritis early on is key to getting back to your active lifestyle. What is Osteoarthritis of the Knee? Osteoarthritis of the knee is a degenerative disease caused by the natural wear-and-tear of the cushioning between your knee joints as the...Continue Reading

Susan Blanton organizing a display in her store

Looking Forward to New Lease on Life after Bilateral Knee Replacement

February 23, 2017

Susan Blanton had always maintained an active lifestyle; being a small business owner meant that Susan had to be on her feet for hours on end, despite dealing with excruciating pain in her knees due to a severe form of arthritis. Instead of complaining, she'd just take another dose of her anti-inflammatory medication and keep going. Susan kept this pace going for more than ten years, grinning and bearing the pain until her knees hurt so bad she could barely stand. It was clear that the pain in her knees was just too much to bear. Desperate to stay on her feet, Susan tried steroid injections...Continue Reading

Dr. Pereles speaking with a patient

Getting to Know Dr. Tom Pereles

February 21, 2017

Shortly before our interview is set to begin I receive a call. An urgent, unplanned surgery has just come up and Dr. Pereles has asked if we can push back our meeting 30 minutes. I tell Dr. Pereles, who insists I call him Tom, that won't be a problem. For Tom, this is just another day at Augusta Health. Tom spent his early days as a child growing up in the Maryland suburbs outside of our nation's capital where he attended public schools. He graduated from Winston Churchill High School in Potomac, MD before going off to study at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia where he received...Continue Reading

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