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November 2018
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November 14 or December 12th.
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In This Issue
News Brief: Millions of Teenagers are Smoking E-Cigarettes 

What is Dry Needling and How Does it Differ From Acupuncture?

Vaccinations are Safe and Effective in Protecting Your Health

Patient Story: Wrist Surgery

Featured Video: Treatments for Common Foot and Ankle Pain

Milford Regional Acquires Next Generation Robotic Surgical System

New Linear Accelerator at The Cancer Center

Hill Health Center Outpatient Lab is Closed on Sundays

Vote NO On Question 1

Need a Primary Care Physician?

Get to Know Our Obstetrics & Gynecology Physicians
News Brief
Millions of Teenagers are Smoking
E-Cigarettes 
There is no scientific evidence that shows that electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) are safe to smoke or a safe way to quit smoking. Unfortunately, e-cigarettes have become the most commonly used tobacco product among our youth. In 2016, more than 2 million U.S. middle and high school students reported using e-cigarettes in the past 30 days. Since then, the numbers have continued to increase.

E-cigarettes contain a battery, a heating element, and a place to hold a liquid. They can be purchased in many shapes and sizes. Some look like cigarettes or pipes, while others look like everyday items including pens or USB flash drives. E-cigarettes produce an aerosol by heating a liquid that usually contains nicotine—the addictive drug in regular cigarettes and other tobacco products, flavorings that taste like menthol, candy, fruit or chocolate, and other chemicals that help to make the aerosol. Users inhale this “vapor” into their lungs (this is often referred to as vaping).

The e-cigarette vapor that users breathe from the device and exhale can contain harmful substances, including:
  • Nicotine – which is highly addictive
  • Ultrafine particles that can be inhaled deep into the lungs
  • Flavoring such as diacetyl, a chemical linked to a serious lung disease
  • Volatile organic compounds
  • Cancer-causing chemicals
  • Heavy metals such as nickel, tin, and lead

Although some adults are using e-cigarettes as a way to quit cigarette smoking, the FDA has not approved it as a quit smoking aid. There is insufficient evidence to recommend e-cigarettes for smoking cessation in adults, including pregnant women. As a matter of fact, nicotine is toxic to fetuses and is harmful to the adolescent brain that continues to develop until the mid-20's.

If you're looking for help to stop smoking, there are seven FDA-approved medications that have been shown to be safe and effective for this purpose. A combination of medication and counseling has been shown to work best. Speak to your primary care physician about trying one of these medications or call 800-QUIT-NOW (800-784-8669).

Question & Answer
What is “dry needling” and how does it differ from acupuncture?
Dry needling is a technique used by physical therapists to treat pain and movement impairments. The physical therapist’s knowledge of anatomy is used to find trigger points. Once the trigger point is identified, the therapist will gently tap the needle into the skin until a “twitch response” is produced.

A twitch response is a quick contraction of the irritated area of the muscle. When the needle is inserted into the trigger point, it breaks up the contraction cycle. The twitch response is the muscle relaxing. The needles are only in long enough to get that response. Dry needling is considered dry compared to wet needling because nothing is being injected into the body. Positive effects include increased blood flow to the area, flexibility, range of motion, restored function and reduced pain.

Although every patient is different, dry needling has been used to treat osteoarthritis, shoulder impingement, plantar fasciitis, neck pain, tennis elbow, headaches and lower back pain.  Currently, we have six physical therapists who have extensive training with dry needling at our Milford and Northbridge Rehabilitation & Sports Medicine sites. 

Acupuncture is performed by an acupuncturist who is specifically trained to stimulate specific points along acupuncture pathways using a wide variety of tools including thin sterile needles, pressure, magnets, heat, and cupping. An acupuncturist is able to break up blockages and strengthen weaknesses so that Qi (a vital energy that flows through the body) can travel freely throughout the body promoting health, well-being, and vitality. Acupuncture is a holistic treatment that treats the root of the problem and the associated symptoms. When the initial cause of the pain is corrected, your body can begin to heal on deeper levels. 

Healthy Living Tip
Vaccinations are Safe and Effective in Protecting Your Health
With the winter months approaching, it is time to make sure you and your family members are properly vaccinated to protect them from illnesses that could be devastating. The CDC recommends almost everyone over 6 months of age receive the flu vaccine every year. It is the single most important way to avoid catching and spreading the seasonal flu. Of course, thorough hand-washing and covering your cough are practices that help and should always be adhered to.

Adults 65 and older should receive two doses of the pneumonia vaccine (unless you have certain chronic health conditions in which case you should check with your primary care physician). Get one dose of the PCV13 followed by one dose of the PPSV23.

Shingrix is a new vaccine that is 90% effective in protecting you from Shingles – a very painful disease that causes a rash on one side of your body, fever, chills, upset stomach. The pain can last for months or even years after the rash goes away so vaccination is the best protection. Even if you received the Zostavax (prior vaccine that was less effective), you should receive this new vaccine. It consists of two doses – 2 – 6 months apart. This vaccine is recommended for those 50 or older. Most insurances are covering this vaccine, but check with your insurance company to be sure prior to getting the vaccine. There has been a shortage of this vaccine in the past few months, but we are hopeful that the inventory will be replenished soon. 

Most vaccines are available at your local pharmacy or health center. Call ahead to be sure the vaccine you are looking for is in stock.  For a full list of recommended immunizations by age group, visit CDC.gov.
Patient Story
Patient Story: Wrist Surgery
Jim will never forget that life-changing moment three years ago when his competitive weightlifting dreams came to a devastating halt. Like any other Saturday morning, he was working out, doing a barbell lift called “the clean” – lifting about 180 pounds, when everything went wrong. 

He heard and felt a pop and within 30 seconds his wrist swelled to twice the size! Jim was in agonizing pain and headed to Milford Regional’s emergency department.  
Featured Video

Footloose and Pain Free: Treatments for Common Foot and Ankle Pain
Your feet and ankles are complex, weight-bearing body parts that are susceptible to pain and injury. Michael Sganga, DPM, is a skilled podiatrist with extensive training in foot and ankle surgery.

From bunions and broken bones to torn Achilles tendons and ingrown toenails, Dr. Sganga treats a variety of conditions. Watch this video to learn about the latest in podiatric medicine, as well as surgical and non-surgical treatments that will help keep you active and on your feet!
Good Things to Know
Milford Regional Has Acquired The Next Generation Robotic Surgical System
Milford Regional Medical Center has acquired the next generation in robotic surgical systems, the da Vinci Xi®. This new, top-of-the-line leader in minimally invasive robotic surgery replaces the da Vinci Si® which the Medical Center introduced to the community in 2013.

The Xi® brings robotic-assisted surgery to a whole new level with technological advancements that can be used for more complex types of surgeries that would otherwise involve large-incision surgery, longer hospital stays and post-operative pain. 

One of the most exciting advances in the new Xi is the ability of the robotic arms and table to automatically adjust and move to virtually any angle and location the surgeon requires. This means a more seamless and quicker surgery with possibly fewer incisions. Milford Regional's expertise in robotic surgeries include: bariatric surgery, colorectal surgery, general surgery, gynecologic surgery, and urology surgery. Experts in robotic thoracic surgery will be joining us very soon!
New Linear Accelerator at The Cancer Center
A new linear accelerator has been installed at Dana-Farber/ Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center at Milford Regional Medical Center offering expanded radiation oncology services to our patients locally and with greater convenience.

The Varian TrueBeam® linear accelerator is one of the most advanced cancer treatment systems in the region, providing pinpoint accuracy to radiate tumors while minimizing exposure to surrounding healthy tissues. With the TrueBeam, the Cancer Center is the first and only center in the MetroWest area to offer a frameless, open facemask for patients receiving stereotactic radiosurgery, as opposed to the skull-bolted frame used elsewhere.  

The TrueBeam system can treat cancer anywhere in the body, including lung, breast, prostate, spine and bone, or brain metastases. The new linear accelerator allows the Cancer Center to provide patients with the option of receiving stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) and a broader range of stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) closer to home. Previously, patients had to travel to Boston to receive those treatments. 
Hill Health Center Outpatient Lab Is Closed on Sundays
As of October 1, the outpatient lab located in the Hill Health Center at Milford Regional is closed on Sundays.  The Hill Health Center Lab hours are Monday – Friday 6AM-7PM, Saturday 6:30AM-3PM.

Patients requiring lab work on Sundays can do so at one of Milford Regional’s three Urgent Care locations in Milford, Northbridge and Hopkinton. The Urgent Care Labs are open on Sunday 9AM-5PM.
Vote NO On Question 1
According to a recent Suffolk University/Boston Globe poll, they found that 58.8 percent of likely Nov. 6 election voters surveyed are against Question 1. Governor Charlie Baker opposes Question 1 citing the disproportionate impact it would have on smaller, community hospitals around the state.

The editorial staffs at the Boston Globe, Boston Herald, MetroWest Daily News, Milford Daily News and Wall Street Journal have unanimously agree that Question 1 is bad for patients and wrong for Massachusetts. Plus, Question 1 puts Milford Regional’s future at risk.

Join the growing number of Massachusetts residents who have made the decision to VOTE NO ON QUESTION 1. Read more from Milford Regional’s President & CEO
About Our Doctors
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Milford Regional's active medical staff, consisting of over 250 doctors, is highly qualified to treat you and your family through sickness and in health. Whether you need a primary care physician or a specialist, you can be assured of the best possible care.

Need a Primary Care Physician?
If you need a physician, please call our Physician Referral Line at 1-888-DRS-HERE (1-888-377-4373). Our Referral Line is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. For a quick look, see our  list of primary care physicians   who are accepting new patients. It is important to note that not all physicians accept all insurances. Please call the physician's office directly to find out if they accept your insurance plan.
Obstetrics & Gynecology
Physicians who specialize in obstetrics & gynecology are skilled and experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of conditions affecting the female reproductive system, as well as managing pregnancy and childbirth.  Most OB/GYNs treat patients from the teenage years through menopause and beyond. In addition, OB/GYNs are surgeons who perform an array of procedures to treat various gynecological conditions. We have two new physicians who have joined our medical staff, Dr. Kelly Bowen and Dr. Brian Bond. 
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