PORTSMOUTH — Southern Ohio Medical Center’s (SOMC) Healthy Exchange event convened at the Welcome Center on Wednesday with presentations from Dr. Jeffery Parker, M.D. of SOMC Surgical Associates, and Dr. Phillip D. Roberts, a primary care physician at SOMC.
Parker discussed colon caner health and awareness, and Philips shared with the group about diabetes health and treatment options that are available.
Hope Blizzard, a medical staff liaisons at SOMC, said the SOMC Health Exchange program is an ideal way for community members to gain knowledge of important health related information at no cost to the participant.
“I think that education is important to the community, and anytime that you can offer free education on a health topic is a great benefit,” Blizzard said. “Where else can you get 30 minutes with a physician at no charge? So I think that it certainly helps us to do our part in the health rankings. It is also another way in which can educate more on prevention, so we can help our health rankings to improve.”
Parker shared what the process of a colonoscopy entails.
“They insert a tubular structure and look at just the colon, notice we are not looking at the stomach, just the colon,” Parker said. “It is very important that you have a good prep. And as you come out, you look for any polyps or abnormalities that need to be biopsied. When you come out, it usually takes between 15 to 20 minutes depending upon how many polyps and findings.”
Contingent upon everything going well during the colonoscopy, a patient is then transported to a recovery room for about one hour.
“If everything continues to go well, then you are released, but you don’t go back to work because you are sedated,”Parker said. “Most people are usually 100 percent the next day. The big advantage to the colonoscopy is that if I find something, then I can go ahead and take it out. If your colonoscopy is negative you are good for 10 years.
Parker emphasized that no procedure is perfect, and that if any other problems should arise after the colonoscopy, and before the 10-year period, and medical attention should be sought out.
“A colonoscopy is a proactive step to help prevent a disease that could potentially shorten your life,” Parker said. “So, to wait for symptoms I strongly discourage that. So, beginning at age 50 you should sit down with your medical doctor, and they obviously have a long list of preventative things that they will want you to do at certain time frames, and one of those that they will certainly do is colon cancer screening. If you opt not to do a colonoscopy then you will what to discuss what medical options, but get some type of screening. This is evidence-based medicine in so much that we can prevent a disease, and help you to have a prolonged, and healthier quality of life.”
Dr. Phillip D. Roberts, who shared numerous different types treatments for diabetics, said it is important for people to know about the treatment options for diabetics that exist.
“It is very important with diabetics type one and two to a healthy diet, exercise and healthy lifestyle.” Roberts said. “We want to raise awareness that there are medical treatment options out there for diabetes, including pills for diabetes as well as insulin. So, there are other treatment options out there, all hope is not lost, they can work with their doctor about finding the right treatment, regiment for them to lower their blood sugars because the complications from diabetes are preventable so working with your doctor or provider to help get your diabetes under control to prevent the diabetic complications.”
In addition to his family physician practice, Roberts also possesses specialized diabetes training.
“I am a family doctor, but I have had training in diabetes therapy and I work a lot with diabetics, and insulin and insulin pump therapy, so I work a lot with the diabetic population, and I am also always willing to take new patients,” Roberts said.
Reach Portia Williams at 740-353-3101, ext. 1929, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.