‘Normalizing’ Life for a Child With Cancer: Our Expert Discusses Ways to Help

Philip Monteleone, MD

Philip Monteleone, MD
Pediatric hematology oncology
Watch a video to learn more about him.

Our expert: Pediatric hematologist oncologist Philip Monteleone, MD, with Children’s Hospital at Lehigh Valley Hospital 

Q: How can I best help my child if I learn he or she has cancer?
A: Learning your child has cancer will make you feel like your world has turned upside-down. Once you process those natural feelings, it’s important to get your family on the same page. It will be helpful as you learn about your child’s medication needs, nutritional requirements and overall treatment plan to ask questions to make sure you understand. In our practice, we have a team of doctors, nurses and social workers who will work with the family before the child goes home. Be sure to use these people as resources.

Q: After a diagnosis, how do I make my child’s life as “normal” as possible?
A: Dealing with cancer is stressful. Yet keeping life as normal as possible for your child – and the entire family – is vital. Studies show that if parents treat the child with cancer the same way they’ve  always treated all their children, the child will be emotionally stronger approaching the disease, and it will create a better recovery. Your child will pick up on the concern if you as parents act differently. Acting normally reassures your child he or she is still a regular kid. Read More »

Take Steps to End GYN Cancers; LVHN Expert Discusses 5 Common Risk Factors and Warnings

Richard Boulay, MD

Richard Boulay, MD
Gynecologic oncology
Watch a video to learn more about him.

How many steps do you think 50 Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) cancer program colleagues members can take in one week?

A. 800 thousand
B. 1.2 million
C. 3.1 million
D. 5.4 million

If you picked “C,” you’re right! Over the course of one week (Sept. 7-13,) our cancer colleagues logged more than 3.1 million steps as participants in the STEPtember Challenge promoted by Globe-athon, an organization dedicated to increase general awareness of gynecologic cancers and the steps women can take to prevent them.

The STEPtember Challenge focused on having people take 10,000 steps a day, equivalent to approximately 5 miles, in an effort to help manage weight. It’s a proactive focus that rings true with LVHN gynecologic surgeon Richard Boulay, MD with Gynecologic Oncology Specialists of Allentown.

“Obesity is a risk factor for many types of cancer, including gynecologic cancers,” Boulay says. “And for uterine (endometrial) cancer – the most common type of gynecologic cancer – obesity is a recognized risk factor.”

Read More »

This Year’s Flu Shot Offers Extra Protection

flu shots at drive-through clinicUPDATE Oct. 15, 2014: The trivalent influenza vaccine will be offered at the drive-through clinics. The quadrivalent vaccine will be available at physician practices. Learn more.

For years, the trivalent influenza (flu) vaccine protected you against three different flu strains – two type-A viruses and one type-B virus. “During the 2013-14 season, several individuals were infected with another type-B strain that was not included in the trivalent vaccine,” says Terry Burger, RN, Lehigh Valley Health Network’s (LVHN) director of infection control. “This year, the new quadrivalent flu vaccine will include two type-A and two type-B virus strains, thus offering you better protection.” The quadrivalent vaccine will be administered throughout LVHN, including at all Lehigh Valley Physician Group practices. You also can get vaccinated for free at our drive-through flu shot clinics at Dorney Park and Coca-Cola Park Nov. 8-9. Call 610-402-CARE to register. A high-dose vaccine – which evidence shows provides better protection for seniors – will be available for people age 65 and older.

Cuts and Bruises – Do I Need an ER or ExpressCARE?

Eric Bean, DO

Eric Bean, DO
Emergency medicine

When you need health care, you have plenty of options. We’re here to help. This is the fourth Thursday in July we are posting a health condition and letting you know when it’s most appropriate to visit a hospital emergency room (ER), and when it’s most appropriate to visit ExpressCARE, which is open 365 days a year and offers walk-in care for common illnesses and minor injuries. In this final installment we look at cuts and bruises.

You need an ER when… “If you can’t move your arm or leg, or if you are on blood-thinners or have another underlying, serious medical condition, you need an ER,” says Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) emergency medicine physician Eric Bean, DO.

You need ExpressCARE when… “If your cut or bruise doesn’t inhibit the movement of your arm or leg, and if you are otherwise healthy, ExpressCARE is the right place to get care,” Bean says. Read More »

Concussions – Do I Need an ER or Express CARE?

Karen Ferrey, PA-C

Karen Ferrey, PA-C
Family medicine

When you need health care, you have plenty of options. We’re here to help. Each Thursday in July we will post a health condition and let you know when it’s most appropriate to visit a hospital emergency room (ER), and when it’s most appropriate to visit ExpressCARE, which is open 365 days a year and offers walk-in care for common illnesses and minor injuries. In this week’s installment we look at concussions.

You need an ER when… “If you have lost consciousness or have other serious side-effects such as vomiting, then you need the ER,” says Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) physician assistant Karen Ferrey, PA, with ExpressCARE at Muhlenberg Primary Care in Bethlehem.

You need ExpressCARE when… “For concussions that are caused by minor trips and falls and that do not cause you to lose consciousness it’s appropriate to seek care at ExpressCARE,” Ferrey says.

LVHN has emergency rooms in Allentown, Bethlehem and Hazleton, a Children’s ER in Allentown, and ExpressCARE in Allentown, Bangor, Bath, Bethlehem, Bethlehem Township, Hazleton, Macungie, Moselem Springs, Nazareth and Whitehall.