PodcastDX is an interview based podcast series in a “peer-to-peer supportive format."
We have found that many people are looking for a platform, a way to share their voice and the story that their health journey has created. Each one is unique since even with the same diagnosis, symptoms and the way each person will react to a diagnosis, is different. Sharing what they have experienced and overcome is a powerful way our guests can teach others with similar ailments.
Many of our guests are engaging in self-advocacy while navigating a health condition, many are complex and without a road-map to guide them along their journey they have developed their own. Sharing stories may help others avoid delays in diagnosis or treatment or just give hope to others that are listening. Sharing is empowering and has a healing quality of its own. Our podcast provides tips, hints, and support for common healthcare conditions. Our guests and our listeners are just like you- navigating the complex medical world. We hope to ease some tension we all face when confronted with a new diagnosis.
We encourage anyone wanting to share their story with our listeners to email us at PodcastDX@yahoo.com .
C-Diff Can Be Deadly
This week we had the honor to speak with Christian John Lillis. Christian is executive director of the Peggy Lillis Foundation for C. diff Education & Advocacy (PLF), co-founded with his brother, Liam, following the death of their mother from a Clostridioides difficile (C. diff) infection in April 2010. PLF envisions a world where C. diff is rare, treatable, and survivable. In pursuit of its vision, PLF is building a nationwide C. diff awareness movement to educate the public, empower advocates, and shape policy.
C. difficile or C-Diff is short for the name of the germ that causes the infection: Clostridioides difficile. C. difficile can affect anyone. The risks are greater for people who:
Are taking, or have recently taken, antibiotics
Have spent some time in a hospital or in a long-term care facility, such as a nursing home
Have a weakened immune system
Are 65 years of age or older
When C. difficile germs take hold and multiply in the gut (intestines),
they can wreak havoc. This center of gut health is called the microbiome. When it gets out of balance your health is at risk, and infections like C. difficile can result. The most common symptoms—watery diarrhea, nausea, stomach pain or cramps—can last for days. If not treated right away, C. difficile can lead to serious medical problems for the person who has it. A severe C. difficile infection can be fatal for certain people.
Many people may not realize that getting a relapse of the infection is highly possible. This is called recurrent C. difficile. Did you know? C. difficile is very contagious and can become a serious health threat to others in the home and the community.
On today's show we are speaking with Kathleen J. O'Shea, Professor of English at Monroe Community College, (Rochester, N.Y.)
Kathy is a 43-year migraine sufferer, who has taken her passion for literature and her chronic illness to create "So Much More Than A Headache, Understanding Migraine Through Literature"
As we know, migraine is so much more than 'just a headache' but possibly a refresher would help us understand and in understanding, create a level of empathy for those around us living with this chronic disease.
A migraine is a headache that can cause severe throbbing pain or a pulsing sensation, usually on one side of the head. It's often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and extreme sensitivity to light and sound. Migraine attacks can last for hours to days, and the pain can be so severe that it interferes with your daily activities.
For some people, a warning symptom known as an aura occurs before or with the headache. An aura can include visual disturbances, such as flashes of light or blind spots, or other disturbances, such as tingling on one side of the face or in an arm or leg and difficulty speaking.
Medications can help prevent some migraines and make them less painful. The right medicines, combined with self-help remedies and lifestyle changes, might help. (Credits: Mayo Clinic)
Staying Healthy as a Veteran
This week we are talking once again with Dan "Dry Dock" Shockley on "Staying Healthy as a Veteran" For Veteran's Day this year we are featuring Dan because even though he has been dealt a hard blow with a hereditary colon cancer gene he is not letting that slow him down one bit! As a matter of fact he is thriving and advocating for others around the globe as a hereditary colon cancer ambassador! Here is some more about Dan:
Dan Dry Dock Shockley, retired U.S. Navy veteran; Operation Desert Storm; Enduring and Iraqi Freedom veteran and 9 hereditary colon cancer WARRIOR.
The U.S. based Colon Cancer Alliance featured his journey for their Veterans Day blog. The below url provided for your reading pleasure:
Also, in honor of Rare Cancer Day, 30 September, the NORDpod featured him as a special guest.
The below url provided for your listening pleasure:
Additionally, he has been a regular contributor to the UK based Rare Revolution team. They recently invited me to be part of their National Patient Advocate Day campaign. My input can be viewed on Instagram:
In closing, here's his latest article which was featured by the Montreal based, RareDIG Organization.
Other links for this episode:
https://www.endeavors.org/veterans-support-mental-health-care-news/what-is-a-veterans-wellness-center-how-endeavors-is-changing-the-face-of-veteran-wellness/ https://www.va.gov/health-care/ https://acp-advisornet.org/articles/1172/4-tips-staying-healthy-veteran
Lambert Eaton Syndrome
This week we will discuss Lambert Eaton Syndrome with Latasha Densie DeRamus. Tasha is 42yrs old, living in Tampa, Fl. with her a daughter Naomi, and a fur baby name Foxy who is 7. Besides Lambert-Eaton, Tasha also deals with Gastroparesis, non-intractable vomiting with nausea, is underweight due to inadequate caloric intake and acute bronchitis.
Lambert-Eaton syndrome, also known as Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome, is a condition in which the immune system attacks the neuromuscular junctions — the areas where your nerves and muscles connect. Normally, your nerve cells pass signals along to your muscle cells. These signals help your muscles move. Because Lambert-Eaton syndrome affects the way your nerves and muscles communicate, making it difficult to move your muscles as you normally would. (credits Johns Hopkins https://bit.ly/3TONh2J)
Autoimmune and The Liver
This week we will be discussing Autoimmune Hepatitis with our guest Michelle Irving.
A pioneer in the Chronic Illness space, Michelle Irving is the Queen of the Underworld. She mentors women around the world, teaching them how to create a life filled with love, meaningful work and deep personal power. She believes we can all have a positive relationship with ourselves even in the midst of experiencing illness. Not to be deterred by a chronic illness, Michelle started her own podcast titled "Pyjama Interviews" as well as providing a six month online course for people living with disabilities or chronic illness. You can find out more from her website: "Queen of the Underworld"
This week we will discuss the annual medical checkup or annual physical exam. We will not have a guest on this episode but hope you will learn just as much from the discussion based on the research we have done for this episode.
Annual Physical Exam: The Basics The physical exam is an essential part of any doctor's visit. Surprisingly, though, there are no absolutes in a routine physical. A good doctor may be thorough or brief, but they will spend time listening to your concerns and providing counseling for your particular complaints and risk factors.
Annual exams usually check your:
History. This is your chance to mention any complaints or concerns about your health. Your doctor will also likely quiz you about lifestyle behaviors like smoking, excessive alcohol use, sexual health, diet, and exercise. The doctor will also check on your vaccination status and update your personal and family medical history.
Vital Signs. These are some vital signs checked by your doctor:
Blood pressure: Less than 120 over less than 80 is a normal blood pressure. Doctors define high blood pressure (hypertension) as 130 over 80 or higher.
Heart rate: Values between 60 and 100 are considered normal. Many healthy people have heart rates slower than 60, however.
Respiration rate: From 12 to 16 breaths per minute is normal for a healthy adult. Breathing more than 20 times per minute can suggest heart or lung problems.
Temperature: 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit is the average, but healthy people can have resting temperatures slightly higher or lower.
General Appearance. Your doctor gathers a large amount of information about you and your health just by watching and talking to you. How is your memory and mental quickness? Does your skin appear healthy? Can you easily stand and walk?
Heart Exam. Listening to your heart with a stethoscope, a doctor might detect an irregular heartbeat, a heart murmur, or other clues to heart disease.
Lung Exam. Using a stethoscope, a doctor listens for crackles, wheezes, or decreased breath sounds. These and other sounds are clues to the presence of heart or lung disease.
Head and Neck Exam. Opening up and saying "ah" shows off your throat and tonsils. The quality of your teeth and gums also provides information about your overall health. Ears, nose, sinuses, eyes, lymph nodes, thyroid, and carotid arteries may also be examined.
Abdominal Exam. Your doctor can use a range of examination techniques including tapping your abdomen to detect liver size and presence of abdominal fluid, listening for bowel sounds with a stethoscope, and palpating for tenderness.
Neurological Exam. Nerves, muscle strength, reflexes, balance, and mental state may be assessed.
Dermatological Exam. Skin and nail findings could indicate a dermatological problem or disease somewhere else in the body.
Extremities Exam. Your doctor will look for physical and sensory changes. Pulses can be checked in your arms and legs. Examining joints can assess for abnormalities.
Male Physical Exam An annual physical exam for men might also include:
Testicular exam: A doctor can check each testicle for lumps, tenderness, or changes in size. Most men with testicular cancer notice a growth before seeing a doctor.
Hernia exam: The famous "turn your head and cough" checks for a weakness in the abdominal wall between the intestines and s*****m.
Penis exam: A doctor might notice evidence of sexually transmitted infections such as warts or ulcers on the penis.
Prostate exam: Inserting a finger in the rectum lets a doctor feel the prostate for its size and any suspicious areas.
Female Physical Exam A woman's annual exam might include:
Breast exam. Feeling for abnormal lumps may detect breast cancer or benign breast conditions. The doctor will also check the lymph nodes in the underarm area and look for visual abnormalities of the breasts and nipples.
Pelvic exam: T
I personally know Lita for a long time. She is the kindest and the most caring person I ever met in my entire life. Such an inspiration. The world would be a better place if only there were more people like her. Keep it up Lita!
I have some rare diseases, and listening these stories from real patients helps me to feel less alone in this journey. Well done, keep up the good work!!!
Love the info!!
I learn a lot from this podcast!! Valuable info that will help with the everyday individual.