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State of Health The Florida Hospital Blog


Communication and community. One doesn’t work very well without the other, so we strive to keep you and your family current with news about Florida Hospital, and the world of wellness abroad. Check back often to find out what’s happening on all of the Florida Hospital locations and throughout our health care network through our official blog.
  • POSTED BY: Best in Care

    Second Chances

    A fight for a second opinion helps breast cancer survivor Audrey Harbeck. 

  • POSTED BY: Best in Care

    Going Strong

    Even diverticulitis couldn't stop busy dad Anthony Roman. 

  • POSTED BY: Best in Care

    Live It Up

    You don't need to suffer through bladder problems. Help is available. 

  • POSTED BY: Best in Care

    Breaking News

    A veteran TV anchor who suffered a stroke on air provides a full report on her experience. 

  • POSTED BY: Best in Care

    Mammography Goes Mobile

    Rae Miller had her mammography and in twenty minutes went back to work. 

  • POSTED BY: Best in Care

    You've Got A Friend

    Care Coordinator provides support to Deb Beck during multiple health crises. 

  • POSTED BY: Best in Care

    Two of a Kind

    Judson and Barbara Stryker have shared their lives - and now, a rare condition. 

  • POSTED BY: Best in Care

    Life After Sudden Death

    When Richard Belanger's heart stopped three times, a trained team saved his life. 

  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    Back-To-School Physicals

    No matter what grade your child is about to enter, annual physicals are probably on top of your back-to-school list.

  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    Help with Hernias

    In a hiatal hernia, the stomach bulges up into the chest through the hiatus, an opening in the diaphragm.

  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    Parting with Pain

    Back pain often masquerades as hip pain, so the first step is confirming your hip is really the problem.

  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    Story of Survival

    The condition results from blood clots that form in the deep veins of the body (most often the legs) and then break off and travel to the lungs.

  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    Speaking Up, Reaching Out

    When fewer women receive mammograms or they wait longer between mammograms, breast cancer isn’t detected until the later stages, when it’s harder to treat.

  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    Divine Intervention

    Medical science helps us explain almost every aspect of what happens to the human body in crisis. But sometimes, despite centuries of progress and limitless technology, only one word will suffice: miracle.


  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    A New Swing

    Little did Chris know, a 2-centimeter tumor in his lower spine was pushing on his nerves. He saw John Jenkins, MD, a neurosurgeon who practices at Florida Hospital Orlando and Winter Park Memorial Hospital, a Florida Hospital, and had surgery soon after.

  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    Setting Screen Time Limits

    In 2013, the American Academy of Pediatrics revealed that average 8- to 10-year-olds were in front of a screen up to eight hours a day, and 11 hours a day for some teens.

  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    Choosing Her Path

    Last April, Amanda Portoghese, 25, of Winter Park, woke at 2 am with severe abdominal pain. Three hours later it happened again, and this time she was finding it difficult to breathe. Her fiancé took her to Florida Hospital Orlando’s emergency department at the insistence of her father, who is a general surgeon there.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital Tampa

    The Facts About Stroke

    The statistics about stroke are startling. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), stroke kills one person in the US every four minutes, accounting for almost 130,000 deaths every year, the fifth leading cause of death in America. One other amazing statistic is that 80% of strokes are preventable.

  • POSTED BY: Best in Care

    A World of Difference

    Much like Kirk Gibson, Detroit Tiger’s 1988 National League MVP, Clarita was an active and healthy person when she was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Deep brain stimulation (DBS) has helped Clarita to live life to the fullest, disabling symptoms such as tremors, rigidity, slowed movement and walking problems.

  • POSTED BY: Best In Care

    In Good Time

    The innovative treatment is performed with Medivance’s Arctic Sun®, a temperature-management machine that uses water-filled pads attached to the skin to bring the body temperature low enough to induce mild hypothermia. In some cases, this procedure can improve the recovery process for patients like Violet and for those who have suffered a heart attack, a stroke or other traumatic injury.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital Tampa

    Should You Consider Weight Loss Surgery?

    Obesity is a risk factor in many leading causes of death, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer. While some of us are considering dropping weight for cosmetic reasons, for many, weight loss can be life saving. While dieting and exercise are essential elements of healthy living, for some, diet and exercise alone are not enough for effective, long-term weight loss.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital

    Rest Easy

    You’ve heard the jokes. Your spouse snores so loudly he or she wakes the neighbors. People who snore loudly are often the target of late-night TV jokes as well as middle-of-the night elbow thrusts; but it’s no laughing matter.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital

    Back in Action

    Rhoda Melik, now 69, of Casselberry, was waiting patiently at a red light one morning in April 2013 on her way to work as a bookkeeper. Unfortunately, the driver of a vehicle behind her approached at a high rate of speed and couldn’t stop in time. The force of the impact was so intense that it sent the other car under hers.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital Tampa

    4 Numbers to Know for Your Heart Health

    One way to control your risk for heart disease is to know 4 key numbers and keep them under control. Know these numbers to keep your heart healthy.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital Tampa

    4 Numbers to Know for Your Heart Health

    One way to control your risk for heart disease is to know 4 key numbers and keep them under control. Know these numbers to keep your heart healthy.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital Tampa

    When a Holiday Emergency Requires a Trip to the ER

    The holiday season is a time for joy, giving, and togetherness. It can also be a time for falls, scrapes, and indigestion. From turkey carving incidents to over exuberance with new toys to over indulgence in holiday foods, emergency rooms across the country see an increase in visits during November and December. 

    How do you know when it’s time to go to the ER? It’s a question many people ask themselves when faced with a personal emergency.

  • POSTED BY: Karen McCoy

    Balance and Aging

    If you fall, it could limit your activities or make it impossible to live independently. Balance exercises, along with certain strength exercises, can help prevent falls by improving your ability to control and maintain your body’s position, whether you are moving or still.

  • POSTED BY: December 1, 2014

    Florida Hospital Zephyrhills Hosts 30th Annual “Lighting of the Trees” Christmas Tree Lighting Event

    Florida Hospital Zephyrhills hosted its 30th annual “Lighting of the Trees” Christmas tree lighting event on Sunday, December 7, 2014. The event brought in thousands of local residents to the front lawn of the hospital, where they were treated to a full day of festivities and celebration.

  • POSTED BY: Melanie Diaz

    Six Tips for Healthy Holiday Eating

    We’ve all been there — you arrive at a holiday party and the room is full of an assortment of delicious treats. And dinner hasn’t even been served yet. 

  • POSTED BY: Travis Gordon, DO

    Forgo The Flu

    But what exactly is the flu? And what can you do to protect your family? Travis Gordon, DO, a resident with the Center for Family Care — located next to Florida Hospital East — has provided us with some timely information regarding all things flu-related.

  • POSTED BY: Deogracias Peña, MD

    Kids & Hypertension

    Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is an increasingly common condition found in children of all ages, including babies. Normal blood pressure readings are different throughout childhood, and can be affected by factors like age, body mass, diet and height. Kids suffering from high blood pressure typically can't feel that anything is wrong except in extreme cases, but hypertension is often due to other underlying problems.

    Most commonly, hypertension is associated with conditions that affect the kidney. Untreated hypertension can result in kidney failure, heart disease, stroke and other problems.

    Some common causes of hypertension in children are:

    • Obesity
    • Kidney disease (Glomerulonephritis, Renal Failure, etc.)
    • Vascular problems (Coarctation of the aorta, renal artery stenosis)
    • Anatomic problems in the kidney (Kidney scars)
    • Autoimmune disease
    • Hormone problems
    • Certain medications

    A pediatric nephrologist can help in the evaluation and treatment of hypertension.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital Tampa

    First Aid for Epileptic Seizures

    Epilepsy is a neurological disorder characterized by recurring seizures that are caused by the misfiring of electrical signals in the brain. These seizures can range in intensity from repetitive motions to uncontrollable muscle spasms. Rarely are epileptic seizures life threatening, and most often they don’t require medical assistance. However, if you witness someone experiencing a seizure, there are some things you can do to help the person through the event.

  • POSTED BY: Peter Bath, D.Min., MBA

    Veterans Day - Lest We Forget

    Veterans Day, or Remembrance Day as others call it, falls on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month each year, marking the hour that peace was achieved ending the Great and terrible war, World War I. On Veterans Day, we are asked to remember, lest we forget, lest we presume that freedom is the default reality of our world, that kindness is natural, and peace a given.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital Tampa

    Breast Cancer: Coping With Your Roller Coaster Feelings

    A breast cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming. Just as cancer treatment affects your physical health, it can affect the way you feel and think. Upon hearing the words “cancer,” people — as well as their loved ones — are thrown into a whirlwind of emotions ranging from anger, fear, denial and overwhelming sadness.  
    Each person’s experience with cancer is unique, and the feelings, emotions and fears you have are different. But here are some tips to help you along the way.

  • POSTED BY: Trushar Patel, MD, Urology Medical Director, Urological Robotic Surgery Florida Hospital Tampa

    Prostate cancer and what you need to know

    Prostate cancer represents 14% of new cancer diagnoses in the United States and is the second leading cause of cancer death in men, according to the National Cancer Institute. However, it is also one of the most survivable cancers with early detection and proper care. In cases where we can detect it at an early stage, often we are able to give our patients a better chance for a cure.

  • POSTED BY: Christine Jallad

    Raising Awareness of Mental Health Issues and Reducing the Stigma

    October 9th is National Depression Screening Day.

  • POSTED BY: Melanie Diaz

    Know Your Numbers

    Have you had your yearly health check-up? Be sure to know your numbers.

  • POSTED BY: Samantha Stinson

    Fighting Breast Cancer One Mammogram at a Time

    A young women faces breast cancer twice.

  • POSTED BY: Colleen Monday

    Do you know infant and pediatric CPR?

    Do you know infant and pediatric CPR?

  • POSTED BY: Elizabeth Clay, DO

    Health Benefits of a Mediterranean Diet

    Mediterranean diet facts, by Elizabeth Clay, DO

  • POSTED BY: Hyrum Brodniak, DO

    5 Facts about Immunizations

    Hyrum Brodniak, DO shares a few quick, easy pointers for parents regarding immunizations

  • POSTED BY: Leslie Potter

    Strokes Don't Discriminate

    Valerie Greene was seemingly healthy and working as a successful financial planner and business owner.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital Tampa

    Lose Weight and Lower Disease Risk

    If you’re overweight or obese, exercise along with diet can reduce your risk of chronic disease.

    That’s the conclusion of a new study in the journal Cancer Research, which found that losing 5 to 10 percent of your body weight through the combined effort can result in a measurable reduction of markers for inflammation.

  • POSTED BY: Celebration Health

    Ladies, Show Your Heart Some Love

    Take our cardiac risk assessment!

    A good friend of mine, Sara, is a mother of two, living a busy life with a full-time job. For months she had been ignoring the fact that she was constantly short of breath. She assumed it was because she hadn’t been working out and old age was catching up to her.What Sara didn’t know what that she was at high risk of suffering a heart attack. Did you know that heart disease is the number one cause of death in women over 65 in the United States? There are a lot of factors that can contribute to heart disease including stress, high blood pressure, diabetes and smoking.

    A family history of heart disease may also increase your chance of having heart conditions. It’s important to know what you can do and what technology is available to help you protect yourself. Sara decided to find out why she was short of breath. She talked to her doctor and scheduled an electrocardiogram (EKG). An EKG is a test that measures the electrical activity of your heart. Essentially, it checks the health and condition of the heart. It is commonly performed after heart attacks and to diagnose chest pain. What are some of the symptoms I need to look out for?

    Many heart problems have similar warning signs you should be aware of including: Chest pain Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing Dizziness or fainting Sweating, nausea or vomiting If you are continuously experiencing any of these symptoms, you should ask your doctor if you need an EKG. EKG’s can also be used to screen for early heart disease that has no symptoms. Screening EKG’s are sometimes performed as a part of routine physicals. The procedure only takes a few minutes and is completely painless.

    Be aware of the warning signs of heart disease. Don’t ignore those symptoms. Sara decided she didn’t want to wait until it was too late. She was proactive about her health to find out what she can do to protect herself. Fortunately, she had time to make changes before she was hit by a heart attack, and I’m thankful she did. Learn if your heart needs some love and schedule your EKG at (407) 303-2273.

  • POSTED BY: Celebration Health

    A Culture of Caffeine

    Next time you’re walking down your grocery store beverage aisle, stop for a moment. Take a look around. It won’t be long before you notice more caffeinated product choices than ever before.

    “I often get asked whether caffeine is healthy or unhealthy for our digestive system,” said Dr. Teresa deBeche-Adams, colorectal surgeon and digestive health expert at Florida Hospital East Orlando.

    “I often tell my patients that it’s healthy in moderation and that more than two cups of coffee a day is not recommended.” In addition to coffee, we’ve listed five other every day caffeinated products so you can be sure you are not overdoing your caffeine intake. Be sure to check the labels for accurate caffeine amounts and compare to your typical cup of coffee - which is about 85mg of caffeine per brewed cup.

    Energy Drinks. These drinks are extremely high in caffeine and sugar and are considered the unhealthiest form of caffeinated beverage.

    Soft drinks. A standard can of soda not only contains about as much caffeine as coffee but is packed with empty calories.

    Teas. Black, green and white teas all are typically caffeinated. Yet some – but not every- kind of herbal teas contain no caffeine.

    Chocolate. Really? Chocolate has caffeine!? You bet. Especially a dark chocolate which is the most caffeinated kind of treat.

    Desserts. Take a look at the ingredients for any dessert flavor with coffee in the title. Some desserts have as much, if not more caffeine per serving, than your average cup of coffee. If you think you’re caffeine intake is too high and you’re suffering from related side effects like constant stomach issues, headaches, irritability, sleeping problems or heart palpitations try cutting back. If you reduced your intake but still have long-term side effects as described above, contact (407) 303-DOCS and request an appointment with a digestive health expert.

  • POSTED BY: Celebration Health

    Why You Should Ask to See an Oncology Social Worker

    When most people hear about social workers, it incites images of children being taken from their parents. However, this exaggeration only highlights a small population of social workers. In fact, there are a variety of fields a social worker can be part of, including the Department of Child and Family (DCF) services, which has received the most media attention.

    One of those fields includes social workers utilized in hospital systems. To help paint a different picture than the above mentioned, I had a chance to interview Chuck Miceli, CCSW, BBCD, OSW-C, the manager of social work at the Florida Hospital Cancer Institute, for a unique look at social workers in the hospital.

    Q: Let’s start off with ‘What are social workers?’

    A: Let's take that even further by talking about the types of social workers. There are clinical social workers such as myself, administrative social workers who work in places such as human resources, case managers who work largely on discharge planning in our hospitals, and community social workers that work in community programs such as employee assistance, DCF, etc. What we do here at the cancer institute is clinical social work. The difference with oncology social workers is that we're an outpatient service. Case managers on the other hand, are an inpatient service with a primary function of discharge planning. We, however, do some case management but mostly focus on clinical counseling – including the adjustment to diagnosis and illness counseling. As a result of that, we're much closer to mental health practitioners than our case manager counterparts.

    Q: What type of services do oncology social workers provide?

    A: We can see anything of the emotional aspect to the real pragmatic "How will I get to treatment?" types of problems. So we typically break those into two different groups of services: emotional support, such as counseling, and practical support, such as help with transportation, financial aid, etc. On emotional support, we counsel patients in regards to the emotional and psychological responses to cancer diagnosis, treatment and survivorship. What distinguishes an oncology social worker from a mental health practitioner is that, although they are both counseling disciplines, their training is quite different. For oncology social workers, we are trained to be in the very environment that we are serving, such as right here in the cancer institute, being housed on the patient floors, in dialysis, etc.

    Q: What training is needed to become a licensed social worker?

    A: A licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) is a master level social worker (MSW) that has gone through the clinical classes in the MSW program followed by two and a half years of clinical supervision. Then you take a licensure exam. In the state of Florida, an LCSW is able to use the title "Licensed Psychotherapist" because with the LCSW you can provide psychotherapy. All oncology social workers in the cancer institute are LCSW’s.

    Q: Who should see an oncology social worker?

    A: As far as oncology goes, everyone should see a social worker at least once after diagnosis. This way we are able to screen for an individual's needs and provide them with the appropriate resources they may not find on their own. I highly recommend individuals who have depression, stress, addictions and/or cognitive barriers to see a social worker.

    Q: How do I get in touch with an oncology social worker?

    A: The best way to get in touch with a social worker is in the very beginning, when you are discovering your oncology team. Our social workers are part of that team -- we have a social worker in every clinic and as a result, patients can use them as a valuable resource. Even if you may not need a social worker at that moment, it's so important to know that you always have that resource available to you. If you are a cancer survivor or are currently undergoing treatment, have you used a social worker? What was your experience? If you would like to contact a social worker, call (407) 303-1700. For resources, including additional information on social workers, support groups and programs, visit Florida Hospital Cancer Institute Support Services.

  • POSTED BY: Suneeta Brito,MD

    Screening Your Sun Safety Just In Time For Summer Fun

    Its time to learn how to better protect our kids from the harmful UV Rays

  • POSTED BY: Brian Ware, DO

    Five (5) Tips for (1) Super and Safe 4th of July

    Five (5) Tips for (1) Super and Safe 4th of July

  • POSTED BY: Naomi Wittenstein

    Taylor's Bounce Back

    When Taylor started feeling out of breath, he knew something was wrong.

  • POSTED BY: Florida Hospital Tampa

    Solving Digestive Disorders

    Digestive discomfort: everybody has it, but no one wants to talk about it. But if you are among the 70 million men and women whose lives are disrupted by a diagnosable digestive disorder, it’s time to open up to your physician.