4 Steps to a Healthier Life

Typewriter - 2015 - time for changeAccording to statistics from the American Heart Association, the American Cancer Society and the American Diabetes Association, two out of three deaths that will occur in the U.S. in 2015 will be the result of cancer, heart disease, diabetes or stroke. That percentage would be significantly reduced if Americans would make healthier food choices, exercise regularly and stop smoking.

“Let’s take those first steps together,” says Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) gynecologic oncologist Martin Martino, MD, with Gynecologic Oncology Specialists. “It seems like a simple formula. But many of us know it’s not that easy. At LVHN, our doctors and nurses are all on the same team. We are here to help patients develop a personalized plan.  We’re here to help you make that commitment to yourself, and to your health.” Read More »

Certified Diabetes Educator Shelley Sassaman, PA-C, Teaches, Shares Firsthand Experience on Sam Lesante Show – VIDEO

Shelley Sassaman, PA-C, knows firsthand how patients feel when they’re diagnosed with diabetes. She learned she had diabetes when she was 10 years old.

That’s why Sassaman, a family medicine provider at Lehigh Valley Physician Group Family Medicine–Hometown, earned her certified diabetes educator license and sub-specialized in caring for diabetes.

“I wanted to be somebody that can come back and educate people so that they weren’t afraid of diabetes and realize that they can live a full life and do everything everybody else could and have diabetes,” she says. Read More »

Check In: Could Your Child Have Diabetes?

Diabetes - Check It, Share ItRanita Kuryan, MD, helps families and children learn to live with diabetes, but it’s not easy news to share. “It’s hard to tell a 10- or 12-year-old child and his or her family that their child has diabetes,” Kuryan says. “Whether a child is diagnosed with type 1 or type 2, diabetes is a chronic condition that he or she must learn to manage for the long term.”

Ranita Kuryan, MD

Ranita Kuryan, MD
Pediatric endocrinology
Watch a video to learn more about her.

Kuryan, a board-certified and fellowship-trained pediatric endocrinologist who practices at Pediatric Specialists of the Lehigh Valley, affiliated with the Children’s Hospital at Lehigh Valley Hospital, has noticed an increase in the number of diabetes diagnoses among children – an observation confirmed in published research. “Researchers with the ‘SEARCH for Diabetes in Youth’ study reported that the number of diabetes cases among children between 2001 and 2009 increased dramatically. They found a 21 percent increase in type 1 diabetes diagnoses and a 30.5 percent increase in type 2 diabetes diagnoses among children ages 0 through 19.”

It isn’t clear why the number of children with diabetes increased.  For type 1 diabetes, environmental factors are under investigation, including whether exposure to some viruses can trigger an immune system attack against insulin-producing cells. Vitamin D deficiency has also been hypothesized. To date, there is no conclusive evidence to support these theories. It has been suggested that the increase in type 2 diabetes in youth is a result of an increase in the frequency of obesity in pediatric populations.Obesity in youth has been increasing since the 1960s. Read More »

IndyCar Race Driver is Featured Speaker for Nov. 16 Diabetes Community Day

Charlie Kimball

Charlie Kimball is the first driver with type 1 diabetes to race at IndyCar’s highest level.

IndyCar racing driver Charlie Kimball, who has excelled behind the wheel while managing type 1 diabetes, will be the featured speaker at the Helwig Health and Diabetes Center’s Community Day, scheduled for Sunday, Nov. 16, at Lehigh Valley Hospital—Cedar Crest’s Kasych Family Pavilion.

The event will be held from 12:30 to 4 p.m. in Medical Imaging of Lehigh Valley Educational Conference Center rooms 6, 7 and 8. Activities will include diabetes-related educational exhibits and product demonstrations. Free flu shots will be available. Attendees also will be eligible for several giveaways. Please call 610-402-CARE to register.

Kimball began his open-wheel racing career at age 17, earning a spot in in the prestigious Formula 3 racing series in Europe. Then during a routine doctor’s visit in 2007, his racing journey almost came to an abrupt end when he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Read More »

Diabetes Prevention Program Brings Healthy Success for Allentown Woman

Luz CruzType 2 diabetes changes the lives of more than 22 million Americans. You don’t need to be one of them. You can prevent or delay the onset of diabetes. When Luz Cruz of Allentown learned she had prediabetes, that’s what she did.

Cruz enrolled in the Diabetes Prevention Program at the Mark J. Young Community Health and Wellness Center at Lehigh Valley Hospital-17th Street. It taught her how to eat healthy and exercise. Thanks to her new habits, she’s lost about 40 pounds and has more energy.

“People see me and aren’t sure it’s me,” Cruz says. “Sometimes it’s hard for me to believe too.”

She shares her success story to encourage others to get the same help.