PIKEVILLE - Pikeville Medical Center continues to provide the best possible care to its patients with the addition of breast MRI.

This new service utilizes a state-of-the-art MRI machine and other advanced equipment to aid in the  detection and diagnosis of breast cancer.

Women who have a 20 percent or higher lifetime risk of breast cancer benefit from this new service.

Breast MRI is used to stage breast cancer and determine treatment, view areas of concern/lumps/questionable tisssue/etc., found through mammography or ultrasound, and check breast implants for leaks and/or ruptures.

Joni Fields, Director of Radiology at Pikeville Medical Center, said, “This service allows Pikeville Medical Center to close the gap between early detection and effective treatment.  We are able to look deeper into the breast tissue and hopefully detect cancer in its early stages.”

New state-of-the-art technology offering advanced computer graphics for visualization is being used by physicians at PMC to read breast MRI  images.

Talk with your physician to determine if you are a candidate for breast MRI.

PIKEVILLE - Saturday, March 30, 2013 is National Doctors’ Day.

First recognized in 1991, George Bush issued a proclamation declaring March 30 to be recognized as National Doctors’ Day.

Pikeville Medical Center encourages everyone to take this opportunity to show appreciation to our community’s physicians for all they do.

“Doctors’ Day gives us an opportunity to celebrate our physicians and thank them for the top-quality care they provide to our patients year-round,” said Pikeville Medical Center President and CEO Walter E. May.  

“Our patients recognize the contributions of our medical staff, and as a result, PMC received the Excellence in Patient Care Award for Doctor Communication by Studer Group in October 2012.  On March 30, I encourage you to take time to wish your personal physician a very happy Doctors’ Day.”

PMC has more than 350 credentialed physicians and offers more than 400 services, including every major specialty and most subspecialties.

Source: doctorsday.org

PMC hosts an Easter Sunrise service for the community each year on the hospital’s heliport.

PIKEVILLE -Pikeville Medical Center invites everyone to attend the hospital’s Palm Sunday, Holy Week and Easter Sunrise services, from Sunday, March 24 through Sunday, March 31.

“The special Holy Week chapel services and the Easter Sunrise service are wonderful ways that Pikeville Medical Center emphasizes its Christian mission,” said Jane Robinson, PMC Director of Spiritual Activities.

“We are so thankful God has a place in the heart of this facility.  Easter is a special time and these services will always be remembered as a part of Pikeville Medical Center’s history.” 

Holy Week Services (Monday, March 25 – Friday March 29) will be held in the hospital chapel, located on the second floor of the May Tower, from 10:30 a.m. – 11 a.m.

Communion will also be available in the hospital chapel throughout the week.

The Easter Sunrise Service will be held on Sunday, March 31 and will begin at 7 a.m. on the hospital’s helipad. The service will be led by the University of Pikeville’s Chaplain Rob Musick and special music will be provided by University of Pikeville’s Concert Choir Director Janean Freeman. In case of inclement weather, the service will be held on the 11th floor of the May Tower.

Refreshments will be provided immediately following the Sunrise Service.

Below is a more detailed listing of Palm Sunday and Holy Week services to be held in the hospital’s chapel, located on the second floor of the May Tower:

Sunday, March 24

9:30 a.m.

Palm Sunday Chapel Service

Message – PMC Chaplain Stephen Thacker

Holy Week Services

Monday, March 25   

Message – PMC Risk Management Director Pam Vanhoose

Special music – PMC Hospitalist Dr. Alicia Warnock


Tuesday, March 26   

Message – PMC Maintenance Tech Dillon Thacker

Special music – PMC Hospitalist Dr. Alicia Warnock

Wednesday, March 27

Message – PMC Assistant Chief Financial Officer Larry Roberts

Special music – Pikeville United Methodist Church Praise Team with PMC’s Speech-Language Pathologist Sherae Murphy and Public Relations Specialist   Jessica Howard

Thursday, March 28

Message – PMC Volunteer John Lattimore

Special music – PMC Volunteer Odis Blankenship

Good Friday, March 29

Message – PMC Chaplain Jarrod Hunt

Special music – Eden Wyatt, 17 year old Junior from Shelby Valley High school and daughter of PMC Physician Practice Physician Office Assistant Carla Pleasant

For more information about these services, contact Jane Robinson at 606-218-4769.

Medical Leader | SUBMITTED PHOTO
DIABETES ALERT DAY: The American Diabetes Association urges Americans to assess their risk for developing type-2 diabetes, which is caused by high levels of sugar in the blood.

PIKEVILLE - Every year, America recognizes the fourth Tuesday in March (March 26, 2013) as Diabetes Alert Day. Founded by the American Diabetes Association, Diabetes Alert Day is “a one-day wake-up call,” asking the public to assess their risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

Diabetes is defined as a chronic disease, caused by high levels of sugar in the blood.

Nearly 26 million Americans have diabetes, and 79 million Americans have pre-diabetes.

Many people with pre-diabetes/diabetes do not know they have it. It is critical to diagnose and treat diabetes as soon as possible, to help prevent certain negative health effects. Some of these complications include heart disease, blindness, kidney disease, stroke and limb amputation.

The American Diabetes Association says, “Everyone should be aware of the risk factors for type 2 diabetes.”

Someone may be at a higher risk for developing type-2 diabetes if he or she is:


•Sedentary (lives an inactive lifestyle)

•45 years of age or older

•African American, Hispanic/Latino, Native American, Asian American or Pacific Islanders

Having a family history (an immediate family diagnosed with diabetes) may also increase a person’s risk for this disease.

Since type-2 diabetes develops overtime, many people with this disease may not experience any symptoms. If symptoms are present, they may include:

•Blurry vision

•Excessive thirst



•Frequent urination

•Unexplained weight loss

Eating healthy, being physically active (150 minutes of moderate activity per week), maintaining a healthy weight, not smoking and keeping blood cholesterol/blood pressure levels under control are ways one can help prevent diabetes and keep blood sugar levels normal.

Pikeville Medical Center offers specialized treatment for adult and pediatric diabetes. To make an appointment or for more information about PMC’s endocrinology services, call 606-218-4793 for adult endocrinology and 606-218-6225 for pediatric endocrinology.

Sources: http://diabetes.org; http://stopdiabetes.com; http://nihseniorhealth.gov; http://ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

PIKEVILLE - March is typically known  for Daylight Saving Time, St. Patrick’s Day and the beginning of spring, but it is also known as National Endometriosis Awareness Month.

Endometriosis is a condition affecting women in which the tissue lining the womb grows on other organs in the body.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, more than five million women in the United States have endometriosis.

Endometriosis can occur in any female who has menstrual periods.

A woman is more likely to develop endometriosis if she has:

•A close family member with endometriosis

•Never had children

•Experienced frequent periods lasting more than seven days

The most common symptoms include pain in the lower stomach, lower back and pelvic region (mainly during or near the menstrual cycle).  Other symptoms may include infertility, spotting and fatigue.

Pikeville Medical Center’s Women’s Services Team encourages anyone who has these symptoms to seek medical treatment and consult with their family physician or gynecologist. 

Although there is no cure for endometriosis, many treatment options are available. The type of treatment depends on several factors, including age, severity of symptoms, severity of illness and pregnancy plans.

Some options for treatment involve exercise and relaxation techniques, pain medication, hormone medication and minimally invasive surgery.

Pikeville Medical Center’s Women’s Services Team

“Pikeville Medical Center is equipped with high definition, state-of-the-art video equipment for laparoscopy, as well as all other current surgical treatments,” said PMC OB/GYN Dr. Aaron Crum. “Nearly all procedures are outpatient with minimal to no downtime. Should you require medical management or further surgical management of endometriosis, our expert physicians can provide treatment for long-term control and relief of symptoms.”

PMC’s trained gynecologists are aware that other conditions can mimic endometriosis, such as irritable bowel syndrome and urinary tract abnormalities. As a comprehensive women’s treatment center, PMC has a complete referral network of urologists and general surgeons for further treatment of these conditions.

Pikeville Medical Center is leading the forefront in women’s care. It was recognized as the Best Regional Hospital in Gynecology for 2011-12 by U.S. News & World Report and earned the Women’s Choice Award for America’s Best Hospitals for Patient Experience in Gynecology 2011 and 2012.

PMC’s Women’s Services Team includes seven obstetricians/gynecologists who are experienced in the most advanced, minimally invasive surgery for the diagnosis and treatment of endometriosis.

PMC’s Women’s Care Center has two convenient locations. To make an appointment, call 606-437-7356 (Town Mountain Road, Pikeville) or 606-478-4600 (just across the Harold bridge).

(Special Thanks to Dr. Aaron Crum, Pikeville Medical Center OB/GYN; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Office on Women’s Health, http://women.webmd.com/endometriosis; A.D.A.M., Inc. Medical Encyclopedia)

PIKEVILLE -Pikeville Medical Center recently received the highest short-term bond rating assigned by Moody’s Investors Service (MIG 1) to finance the hospital’s ongoing expansion – an 11-story clinic and parking garage on the main campus.

Proceeds from the current sale of $45 million in new bonds will allow PMC to equip and build out three additional floors in the clinic as well as paying for additional floors in the parking garage. In addition to receiving an MIG 1 rating, Moody’s Investor Service listed PMC’s outlook as stable based on the hospital’s growth and strong financial position.

Moody Investor Service also affirmed the A3 long-term rating assigned to PMC’s $88.4 million of outstanding 2011 fixed rate revenue bonds. This rating is based on PMC’s strong and leading market share.   

These ratings come at a time when other nonprofit organizations’ bond ratings are being significantly downgraded. A Feb. 18, 2013 article in “Nonprofit Quarterly” stated that Moody’s Investor Service downgraded a record $20 billion in nonprofit hospital debt in 2012, “reflecting a ‘negative outlook’ from Moody’s on nonprofit hospitals for the past five years.”

PMC President/CEO Walter E. May stated, “We’re pleased that at a time when other nonprofit organizations are being downgraded, Moody’s Investor Service is giving Pikeville Medical Center the highest rating possible MIG 1. We are excited to be able to offer the conveniences of the new clinic to our patients.”

Moody’s Investor Service identified the following strengths for Pikeville Medical Center in its report:

•Dynamic Chief Executive Officer (CEO) that has defined current culture, upgraded the physical plant, enhanced services, added physicians and built a capable executive management team

•Holds a strong and leading 68% market share in Pike County and a leading 31% market share in its extended seven-county primary service area

•Regional provider of expanding health care services with a strong focus on cardiac and oncology designated centers

•Successful recruitment of physicians, which is enhancing the hospital’s service lines, increasing referrals from smaller area hospitals and reducing the incidence of patients traveling to tertiary providers in Lexington, KY, Huntington, WV and Kingsport, TN.

Moody’s Investors Service is a leading provider of credit ratings, research, and risk analysis.

The firm’s ratings and analysis track debt covering more than 115 countries, 10,000 corporate issuers, 22,000 public finance issuers and 82,000 structured finance obligations.

Pictured are the individuals who attended the first task force meeting at PMC on March 5.

PIKEVILLE - Pikeville Medical Center is conducting a Community Health Needs Assessment in an attempt to improve health care services in the area.

To gain a comprehensive understanding of the gaps in health care that exist within the community, the hospital assembled a task force of local community leaders offering a wealth of knowledge and experience in their respective fields.

PMC strives to be responsive to the needs of those it serves.  The organization provided more than $41 million in charity care last year and has also increased service lines, opened satellite clinics and recruited specialists to make quality health care more accessible.

The hospital is requesting the community’s help in completing a Community Health Needs Assessment Survey.

Please take a moment to mail in the survey, found in this issue and two upcoming issues of Medical Leader, to P.O. Box 1439, Attn:  Miranda Click, Pikeville, KY 41502.  The survey is also available online at http://pikevillehospital.org.  or you may simply take it below in this article.

Surveys must be completed by April 15.   

PIKEVILLE - According to the American Heart Association (AHA) between 60 and 70 percent of adults in America are overweight or obese. 

The President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition reported by 2030, half of all adults (115 million adults) in the United States will be considered overweight.

Obesity is defined as an excess proportion of total body fat (20 percent above normal weight).

The most common way to measure obesity is by Body Mass Index (BMI), a numerical value of weight in relation to height.

A BMI of more than 30 is considered overweight. If pregnant, breastfeeding or highly trained/athletic looking at BMI may not be the best way to calculate obesity.

The AHA lists losing weight and maintaining a healthy weight as a part of Life’s Simple 7 key factors to keeping one’s heart healthy and improving quality of life.

When someone is carrying too much weight it increases his/her heart’s work. It also raises blood pressure, bad cholesterol and triglyceride levels and lowers good cholesterol levels.

The AHA states, “All exercise adds up to a healthier heart,” and studies show that for every hour of walking, life expectancy may increase by two hours.

The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans suggests 30 minutes of physical activity a day for adults and 60 minutes a day for children, at least five days a week.

When starting to exercise, it is suggested to adhere to the following:

•Wear comfortable, weather appropriate clothing and properly fitted footwear

•Start slowly and gradually build up to 30 minutes of activity on all or most days

•Find a convenient time/place to be active.

•Try to exercise at the same time, so it becomes a part of your lifestyle.

•Have reasonable expectations

•Look for chances to be more active during the day (walking the stairs instead of taking the elevator)

•Choose activities that are fun and try to add variety

•Avoid exercising immediately after meals, or when it is very hot/humid

•Workout with family and friends/Listen to music to stay motivated

•Remember to breathe (do not hold your breath)

•Use proper safety equipment

•Warm up/stretch before and after a workout

Encouraging the public to make healthy strides, the Pikeville Medical Weight Loss Surgery Center is hosting its first Reclaim Your Life 5K run and 1 mile fun run/walk on Saturday, May 4, 2012.

Registration will begin at 8 a.m. on Main Street, and the race will start at 9 a.m.

For more information about the race, or to pre-register call PMC’s Public Relations Department at 606-218-4509. Check with your primary care physician before beginning any new exercise program.

Source: http://webmd.com, http://fitness.gov, http://heart.org

PIKEVILLE - The Pikeville Medical Weight Loss Surgery Center has been approved as a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence (BSCOE) by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS).

This designation, effective Jan. 25, 2013, highlights the Weight Loss Surgery Center’s commitment to providing safe, high-quality bariatric surgical care as well as in-depth education and support.

In order to receive this status, the PMC Weight Loss Surgery Center had to meet strict requirements set by the ASMBS and the BSCOE program, some of which include:  an institutional commitment to excellence in the care of bariatric surgery patients; a surgeon whose primary focus is bariatric surgery and who continually completes medical education pertaining to the most advanced treatments in weight loss surgery; organized and supervised support groups for all patients who have had or may have weight loss surgery; and long-term patient follow-up care that consistently monitors and tracks patients’ results.

Bariatric Surgeon Dr. Amy Johnson stated, “Being an ASMBS Center of Excellence requires an extremely high level of commitment from all facets of the multidisciplinary team.  It also requires significant dedication from hospital administration and all departments involved in taking care of bariatric patients.  Part of this dedication requires daily ongoing process improvement to continually advance our services.  The bottom line of the BSCOE program is to ensure the very best care and excellent outcomes for our patients.”

The BSCOE designation is the result of the commitment and dedication put forth by a large group of staff at Pikeville Medical Center.

“I am honored to work with people who are dedicated to the care of obese patients,” said Dr. Johnson.  “There are so many people to thank for their commitment to obtaining center of excellence status for Pikeville Medical Center: the hard working staff of the surgical floor; administration, especially President and CEO Walter May and COO Juanita Deskins; as well as the weight loss surgery center office staff.  I particularly want to thank Bariatric Center Coordinator Ciara Ferguson for her tireless effort in obtaining this goal.”

According to the Surgical Review Corporation (SRC), the BSCOE program began in 2004, and is the largest center of excellence program for bariatric surgery in the world.

The ASMBS is the world’s largest organization for bariatric surgeons. As a non-profit organization, it works to advance the art and science of bariatric surgery, and is committed to educating medical professionals and the public about bariatric surgery as an option for the treatment of morbid obesity, as well as the associated risks and benefits.

PIKEVILLE – In her early 20s, Tiffany Fronto weighed 325 lbs., and suffered from high blood pressure and knee problems.

In December 2011, Fronto underwent gastric by-pass surgery through the Pikeville Medical Weight Loss Surgery Center. 

“I wanted to undergo weight loss surgery a long time ago, but it just didn’t work out for me,” said Fronto. “Like most people, I had already tried everything under the sun. Having weight loss surgery at Pikeville Medical Center is the best decision I have made. I feel great.”

Having lost 180 lbs., Fronto recently met her goal of 145 lbs.

Fronto reflected, “It’s been a really good journey, but it’s not been easy and it’s not a quick fix. Being successful requires getting your mindset right so you can put into it the work it requires. You are not going to come out of surgery and be completely changed. You are still the same person you were before surgery; you still have the same thinking. You did not gain weight overnight, so you are not going to lose weight overnight. You have to work to meet your goal.”

During the first three months post-surgery, patients experience many changes and are asked to make several lifestyle adjustments.

Fronto continued, “In the beginning there was a point where I thought, ‘What have I done?’ But I think once you can get past that and stop getting discouraged, you can get into the habit of making smarter and healthier choices. Making a lifestyle change takes some adjusting.”

Fronto recommends weight loss surgery patients take baby steps.

“It’s very important to set realistic and specific goals,” said Fronto. “I kept a calendar to track my weight twice a week. I would set weekly goals to either maintain or lose weight.Reaching little goals keeps you motivated for the future.”

PMC’s Weight Loss Surgery Center has helped Fronto every step of the way.

“PMC’s weight loss surgery staff is wonderful,” said Fronto. “Anytime you have a question about even the smallest thing, you can ask them. They are more than willing to work with you and give you the answers you need to stay on track. They are not just there for you during surgery, they offer life-long support.”

Even though she has been successful, Fronto experienced setbacks.

She explains, “Weight loss surgery patients are going to experience backslides. Nobody is perfect. You are not going to make the best decisions 365 days a year. You are going to mess up and fall off the bandwagon, but when you do you have to get back up. You’re only unsuccessful if you stay off.”

PMC’s Weight loss surgery Reclaim Your Life Support Groups helped give Fronto the encouragement she needed.

“It’s wonderful to meet with other people who have gone through the same thing you are. If you are struggling - have fallen off course - they understand and are there to pick you back up,” explained Fronto

Now that she has met her goal weight, Fronto has made healthy habits a part of her life.

“Working out and eating healthy has become a part of who I am,” she said. “Before, I thought it was a ‘have to’ thing, but now I want to. This has definitely been a lifestyle change for me. After reaching my goal, I cannot go back to my old lifestyle. This was not a temporary fix, so it cannot be a temporary change.”

Fronto’s success from Weight loss surgery has given her confidence.

 â€œWhen I first started working out, I was the person in the back of the room because I didn’t want anyone to see me. Now, I am the person in the front of the room because I want to look at myself.”

Fronto encourages others who may be struggling with their weight. “I understand. I’ve been there before. I know how it is to feel like you don’t want to do certain things because you’re heavier. You think everyone is looking at you. In moments like those, you have to decide if you really want to make a change...Beginnings are not easy, but once you get past the hump, it does get easier.”

PMC’s Weight Loss Surgery Center is a Center of Excellence and is dedicated to providing its patients with the best care possible. For more information about PMC’s Weight Loss Surgery Center and the services it provides, call 606-218-4811.