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Mountain Vista earns recognition for wound care

Mountain Vista Medical Center has been recognized as a Center of Distinction for wound care by Healogics, Inc.,  the nation’s largest provider of advanced wound care services, making it one of very few locations in Arizona to have earned this national award.

Five hundred and six centers were eligible for the Center of Distinction award, and only 172 centers across the country achieved the honor. The award distinguishes Mountain Vista Medical Center as one of the top wound care centers in the country and is given to facilities that have outstanding patient outcomes for 12 months or more.

Mountain Vista Medical Center earned the Center of Distinction recognition for having a patient satisfaction rate of 92 percent, a wound healing rate of 98 percent, and an average of 27 days for wounds to heal after treatment. 

“Receiving this honor is a tremendous deal to our team because it recognizes the continued dedication we have to our patients, as they are our first priority,” said Eric Schlesinger, M.D., General Surgery Wound Care Medical Director at Mountain Vista Medical Center. “Our goal is to consistently provide the very best care possible, and although it’s extremely gratifying to receive a national recognition like this, it cannot compare to the feeling we have when our patients are healed after receiving the right type of specialized treatment.”

Nationally, approximately 7 million people suffer from chronic, open wounds, usually involving the lower extremities. This serious condition can cause significant impairment in the quality of life and may lead to limb amputation if left untreated. Non-healing wounds frequently occur in the elderly and in people with diabetes, peripheral arterial disease (PAD) and chronic vein disorders such as varicose veins and venous thrombosis and prolonged immobility.

As a member of the Healogics Network of more than 635 Centers, Mountain Vista Medical Center provides access to benchmarking data from its experience in treating more than 2 million chronic wounds. The hospital offers highly-specialized wound care to patients suffering from diabetic ulcers, pressure ulcers, infections and other chronic wounds which have not healed in a reasonable amount of time. Advanced treatments include hyperbaric oxygen therapy, negative pressure wound therapy, bio-engineered skin substitutes, biological and biosynthetic dressings and growth factor therapies.

The trained specialists at Mountain Vista Medical Center follow a multidisciplinary approach to wound healing. After an initial evaluation, each patient receives a comprehensive, individualized plan designed to help heal complicated wounds. The team works to address the underlying cause of the problem, control infection and improve the overall health of its patients.

“At Mountain Vista Medical Center, we are committed to providing the highest-quality care possible,” said Tony Marinello, CEO of Mountain Vista Medical Center. “This award reinforces what we strive to achieve every day: great patient outcomes.”

For more information about wound healing at Mountain Vista Medical Center, call (480) 358-6090 or visit www.mvmedicalcenter.com/services/wound_care/.

Weight-loss surgery - Scottsdale Living Magazine Spring 2012

5 Things To Know About Weight-Loss Surgery

Eric Schlesinger, M.D., FACS, a board-certified bariatric surgeon and the medical director of the Bridges Center for Surgical Weight Management at Tempe St. Luke’s Hospital, breaks down some of the things you need to know about weight-loss surgery.

Who should consider it

Typically, a patient must be morbidly obese in order to qualify for weight-loss surgery. A person is considered morbidly obese if he or she has a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher and is at least 100 pounds overweight. A person with a BMI of 35 or higher with two or more serious health issues related to weight may also be a candidate.

Types of weight-loss surgeries

There are several different types of surgery for weight loss, including the adjustable gastric band, gastric bypass, vertical sleeve gastrectomy and duodenal switch procedures. For side-by-side comparisons of the procedures, visit bridgesaz.com/downloads/Bridges_TypesBariatricSurgery.pdf.

How to choose a surgeon

When you are considering a surgeon, you will want to ask what type of procedures he or she performs, if they are board-certified, and if the surgery will be performed in a designated Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence (COE) by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS).

Risks of weight-loss surgery

Complications from bariatric surgery — such as wound infections, abdominal bleeding, staple/suture leakage, respiratory failure, pulmonary problems or other surgery-related issues — occur in less than five percent of the procedures performed. Longer-term negative affects of bariatric surgery can include such issues as ulcers, anemia, vitamin deficiencies, temporary hair thinning and symptomatic gallstones. Depending on the type of procedure, additional negative affects can include abdominal cramping, faintness and headaches. However, many of these risks can be eliminated and/or minimized with a proper nutritional diet and regular physical exercise.

Benefits of weight-loss surgery

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), bariatric surgery is the only proven weight loss method for those suffering from morbid obesity (BMI of 40 or more). Obesity is a factor in many health issues and diseases such as Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, male- and female-related cancers, obstructive sleep apnea, osteoarthritis, depression and more. People that undergo weight loss surgery may find that obesity-related health conditions improve or are even eliminated as a result of the surgery. With a comprehensive program that provides life-long follow up, counseling and education, the resulting weight loss, and all of its benefits, can last a lifetime.

The costs of weight-loss surgery

Many insurance plans now cover bariatric surgery, especially if the patient has health issues related to weight. There is a complex authorization process, therefore it’s important to find a bariatric program, like the Bridges Center, that can help you with obtaining authorization.

For more information about weight-loss surgery, visit weightlossarizona.com.

Scottsdale Living Magazine Spring 2012

Weight-loss - Scottsdale Living Magazine Spring 2012

Weight-Loss Surgical Procedures Help Patients Reclaim Their Lives

Cutting the fat: Weight-loss surgical procedures help patients gain confidence while reclaiming their lives

For most people who battle their weight, there is an epiphanic moment that needs to happen before they make a healthy change that sticks.

“I was 27 years old and couldn’t keep up with my (three) children because I was overweight,” says 29-year-old Autumn Garvin. “I had no energy, and my family was suffering as a result. I had tried every diet and would lose some weight but always would gain it back — and then some. I was frustrated and needed to take control of my own life.”

One day, she suggested to her youngest son that they lay down for a nap before picking up her two older children from school.

“He said, ‘Mommy, don’t be lazy!’ ” Garvin recalls. “That moment was such a wakeup call for me. I would never want my kids to be hindered — or worse yet, embarrassed — by my weight problems.”

That was the trigger Garvin needed to do something about her lifelong struggle with weight. She underwent a laparoscopic gastric banding procedure, performed by Dr. Eric Schlesinger of Scottsdale — a board-certified bariatric surgeon and the medical director of the Bridges Center for Surgical Weight Management at Tempe St. Luke’s Hospital. During surgery, Schlesinger placed an adjustable silicone band around the upper portion of Garvin’s stomach, creating a smaller upper stomach pouch that limits food intake.

Besides the adjustable gastric band, other surgical options available for weight loss include gastric bypass, vertical sleeve gastrectomy and duodenal switch procedures.

“Each of these procedures treats obesity a little differently,” Schlesinger says. “For example, the gastric band causes a person to feel full after eating less food than previously. Gastric bypass, vertical sleeve gastrectomy and duodenal switch have an additional effect on a person’s metabolism.”

Since having surgery, Garvin has lost 110 pounds (and counting), is able to keep up with her children, now ages 12, 9 and 7 years old, and is doing things she never thought would be possible.

“Last Thanksgiving, I walked and jogged a 5K race,” she says. “It means so much to me to be able to lead an active lifestyle and share that way of life with my family.”

But Garvin’s weight-loss accomplishment hasn’t been without its rough patches.

“The biggest hurdle with my weight loss journey was dealing with people who told me I was a cheater, and I didn’t understand how to ‘really’ lose weight,” she says. “It took some time for me to realize that it didn’t matter what everyone else thought — I was working hard, and it was paying off. Now, if people tell me I’m a cheater, I just say, ‘You’re right. I cheated being obese for the rest of my life by working hard to lose more than 100 pounds.’ ”

For more information about the weight-loss surgical options mentioned in this story, visit weightlossarizona.com.

Surgical Weight Loss Solutions at Tempe St. Luke’s
1492 S. Mill Ave., #201, Tempe
(480) 968-6007

Scottsdale Living Magazine Spring 2012