Wednesday, October 27, 2010

November Calendar of Events for Fauquier Health

Tuesday, November 2
Flu Vaccine Clinic
Where: Fauquier Health Internal Medicine at Lake Manassas, in Gainesville
When: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
More information: 703-743-7300

Handbag Sale
Where: Fauquier Hospital Sycamore rooms
When: 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Details: Sponsored by the Fauquier Hospital Auxiliary as a fundraiser

Wednesday, November 3
Handbag Sale
Where: Fauquier Hospital Sycamore rooms
When: 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Details: Sponsored by the Fauquier Hospital Auxiliary as a fundraiser

Thursday, November 4
Joint Replacement
Where: Fauquier Health Sycamore rooms
When: 6 p.m.
Details: A physician from Blue Ridge Orthoepaedic & Spine Center will speak on joint replacement
Register: 540-316-3588

Tuesday, November 9
Flu Vaccine Clinic
Where: Fauquier Health Internal Medicine at Lake Manassas, in Gainesville
When: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
More information: 703-743-7300

Wednesday, November 10
Men’s Health Lecture
Where: Fauquier Hospital Sycamore rooms
When: 7 p.m.
Details: “Solutions for Erectile Dysfunction,” with David Pfeffer, M.D.
Register: 540-316-3588

Thursday, November 11
Diabetes Support Group
Where: Fauquier Health LIFE Center
When: 6 to 7 p.m.
Details: “Protecting your Kidneys with Diabetes” presented by Dr. Nivedita Chander, Nephrologist
Register: 540-316-2652

Wednesday, November 17
Presentation on “Ethical Issues in Organ Donation”
Where: Fauquier Hospital Sycamore rooms
When: noon to 1 p.m.
RSVP: 540-316-4730 (by Monday, November 15)

Friday, November 19
Fauquier Hospital Holiday Faire
Where: Fauquier Hospital Sycamore rooms
When: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Vendors: Reserve table (by November 5) by calling 540-316-3852 or 540-316-5900

Monday, November 22
American Red Cross Blood Drive, Type O
Where: Fauquier Hospital, Sycamore rooms
When: 1 to 4 p.m.

New ENT Physician Joins Fauquier Health

Fauquier Health is delighted to announce the addition of a new ear, nose and throat physician to its staff. With more than two decades of experience as an otolaryngologist, Jairo Torres, M.D. has treated a broad spectrum of conditions for both pediatric and adult patients, including ear infections (chronic otitis media), sinus problems, thyroid disorders, head and neck masses and sleep apnea.
Prior to joining Fauquier Health, Dr. Torres was a private practice ENT physician specializing in pediatric services at Children’s Hospital Central California for two years. Prior to that, he was a private practice physician in Colombia for 16 years, where he served as a hospital medical director and an ENT clinic director.

Board certified in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery, Dr. Torres says it’s an exciting time in his field. “The recent advances in sinus surgery are very promising. And there are new techniques that can help patients avoid surgery, as well.” He explains that in the case of blocked sinuses, there is a procedure using a balloon that is inflated at the sinus opening to dilate the ostium, or sinus opening into the nose. Instead of a two- to three-hour surgery, it is a 15-minute procedure under general anesthesia. “It’s quick, less invasive and does not remove any tissue. It can be very effective. A lot of parents, for instance, would rather avoid surgery for their child if possible, especially since most kids outgrow sinus problems.”

Dr. Torres has come to Warrenton from central California and loves his new home. While he and his family are enjoying the small town feel of the area and the rolling vistas, Dr. Torres said that’s not what convinced him to move east. “I was very impressed with Fauquier Hospital’s Planetree philosophy, where the emphasis is on treating the whole patient.” Dr. Torres is a firm believer in family involvement, as well. From his own experience, he knows that when he includes loved ones in the treatment process, patients experience much better outcomes.

After earning his Doctor of Medicine degree from University of the Valley Division of Health Sciences (Colombia) in 1983, Dr. Torres completed the University of the Valley Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Internship and Residency Program, and the Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, Ohio) Otolaryngology International Fellowship Program. At Case Western Reserve University, he also completed the General Surgery Residency Program in 2004, and the Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Residency Program in 2008.

Jairo Torres, M.D.
Board certified in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery
400 C Hospital Drive
Warrenton, VA 20186
Dr. Torres is fluent is Spanish.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Breast Cancer Lecture October 27 at Fauquier Hospital

Dr. John Williams, breast surgeon and Dr. Maria Pace and Dr. Jennifer Wargo, radiologists, will hold a workshop on breast cancer and the latest treatments on Wednesday, October 27 in Fauquier Hospital's Sycamore Room. The session will start at 6:30 p.m. Register by calling 540-316-3588 or register online at .

Dr. Williams is a caring and compassionate physician who understands that breast cancer affects every patient -- and their families -- differently and that treatment requires a multidisciplinary approach. For more on Dr. Williams' philosophy, click on .

Some New Research on the Flu

Since we're talking about flu, here is some of the latest research, as reported by HealthDay.

Click here.

A Flu Q&A from CDC

What is seasonal flu?
Seasonal flu is a contagious respiratory disease caused by an influenza virus.

What is flu season?
Flu season is the period of time when flu is circulating among the population. In the United States, flu season is from November through April, and sometimes lasts into May. The Virginia Department of
Health recommends receiving your vaccination from October through April.

How does flu spread?
The flu spreads mostly through coughing and sneezing. It can also be spread by touching something
with the virus on it then touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

What are the symptoms of seasonal flu?
Seasonal flu is marked by upper respiratory symptoms such as coughing and sneezing, fatigue,
muscle aches, fever and headaches. Seasonal flu has also been known to cause vomiting or nausea
in children.

Is seasonal flu serious?
It can be. Approximately 200,000 Americans are hospitalized with seasonal flu every year and nearly
36,000 die of complications caused by seasonal flu.

How can you prevent seasonal flu?
The single best way to prevent catching and spreading seasonal flu is to get vaccinated. It’s also
important to practice good health hygiene, such as covering your mouth with your arm when you
cough or sneeze, washing your hands often, and staying home if you are not feeling well.

Who should get vaccinated?
Everyone can benefit from getting annual vaccinations for seasonal flu. It is most important for
individuals to get vaccinated if they are:
􀀹 Pregnant
􀀹 Ages 6 months to 5 years
􀀹 Over 65
􀀹 Living with certain chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, lung disease, asthma and
􀀹 Living with a weakened immune system as a result of HIV or other serious diseases
􀀹 Living in a nursing home or other long-term care facility
􀀹 Living with a nerve or muscle disorder such as severe cerebral palsy or seizure disorder
􀀹 Living or working with any of the groups mentioned above

Is there anyone who shouldn’t get vaccinated for seasonal flu?
Children under six months old and people who are allergic to chicken eggs or have had an allergic reaction to past flu vaccines should not be vaccinated. Also, individuals who have been diagnosed with Guillaine-Barre Syndrome, a rare disease that affects the nerve cells, within six months of getting a flu vaccine should not get another.

When should I get vaccinated?
The optimal time is in October or November, before flu season starts. But flu season can peak
as late as May, so the Virginia Department of Health recommends vaccination as long as vaccine is available.

How is the vaccine administered?
There are two types of vaccines. One is administered via injection, usually in the arm. The other is given as a nasal spray.

How do I know which vaccine to get?
The nasal spray vaccine should only be given to healthy people ages 5 to 49. Pregnant women,
children receiving long term aspirin therapy, and those who have close contact with someone who
has a weakened immune system should get the injection.

How soon after I get vaccinated will I be protected?
Adults begin to produce antibodies to the strains of flu virus in the vaccine about two weeks after
receiving it.

Why do you have to get vaccinated for seasonal flu every year?
The virus itself changes from year to year, so even if you have immunity against a certain kind
of virus that was in circulation last year, you may not be protected against this year’s strains. Also,
the immunity you built up as a result of last year’s vaccine diminishes over time.

Myths and facts about the flu vaccine

Source: The Centers for Disease Control

Myth: You can get the flu from the flu vaccine.
Fact: You cannot get the flu from the flu vaccine. The flu shot contains only inactive viruses — those that have been killed. The nasal spray contains live viruses but they are too weak to cause the disease. Some people do have side effects such as body aches or a low fever after receiving the vaccine, but they do not have flu.

Myth: You can get flu from the nasal spray vaccine.
Fact: You cannot get flu from the nasal spray vaccine. The vaccine contains viruses that are too weak to cause illness. There have been some reports of flu-like symptoms appearing, mostly in children, after getting vaccinated, but these are not the same as the flu.

Myth: The flu vaccine doesn’t work.
Fact: In most years, the flu vaccine prevents flu for between 70 percent and 90 percent of vaccinated healthy people under the age of 65. Sometimes, people who get other illnesses that have flu-like symptoms think the flu vaccine has not worked, when in fact they do not have influenza.

Myth: If you get a flu vaccine you can’t get an influenza virus.
Fact: Flu vaccines are made to protect against the most likely strains of flu circulating in a given year. But there is no guarantee that those will be the only strains circulating, and it is possible to get a flu vaccine and still come down with another strain of flu for which you are not protected. The vaccine may also not be 100 percent effective against the strains of the flu it contains. That depends largely on the age and health of the person vaccinated.

Myth: The flu isn’t serious enough to warrant vaccination.
Fact: Most people who get seasonal flu do not have complications, but for some, complications can be severe. Approximately 200,000 hospitalizations and 36,000 deaths a year are attributed to complications of seasonal flu.

Myth: If I don’t get vaccinated in the fall, I shouldn’t bother because it will be too late.
Fact: The best time to get vaccinated is in October or November — before flu season starts. But flu
season can peak as late as May, so the Virginia Department of Health vaccinates from October through April, or longer if necessary.

Myth: There is a limited supply of vaccine, so you should leave it for those who really need it.
Fact: Manufacturers project there will be between 110 and 115 million doses of flu vaccine available in the U.S. for the upcoming flu season — the most vaccine ever available in a single flu season. Public health and government officials believe there will be enough vaccine available for everyone who wants to be vaccinated.

Myth: Absolutely everybody should get the flu vaccine.
Fact: There is an extremely limited group of people who should not get either kind of flu vaccine.
Specifically, people with a history of allergy to eggs and those who have had a rare illness called
Guillaine-Barre Syndrome should not get the flu vaccine.

Myth: I’ve already had the flu, therefore I am immune.
Fact: Flu viruses change frequently. Immunities you have built up to one strain of flu virus are not
likely to protect you entirely from another strain.

Myth: I got vaccinated last year so I’m protected this year.
Fact: Because flu viruses adapt and change regularly, the vaccine is different from year to year.
Also, immunity wears off, so even if the viruses are similar from year to year, it’s important to renew the shot annually.

Myth: I’m healthy lower age/my child is healthy. Therefore we don’t need the flu shot.
Fact: Healthy people are less likely to catch any virus because their bodies are in a better position
to combat the flu. However, it is still possible for a healthy person to get the flu.

Myth: The flu vaccine can cause autism.
Fact: Most flu shots contain thimerosal, a preservative that contains mercury and some people believe is related to developmental disorders. A 2004 Institute of Medicine report found no causal relationship between thimerosal and autism. If you are concerned, however, ask your doctor for assistance in finding a vaccine without thimerosal. The nasal spray vaccine does not
contain thimerosal.

Myth: The flu vaccine is not safe for young children or pregnant women.
Fact: The flu vaccine injection is safe and recommended for children over six months and for
pregnant women.

Myth: You don’t need to get vaccinated because there are drugs now that keep you from getting
the flu.
Fact: There are prescription drugs on the market that may prevent flu in some healthy adults if they
are taken every day there is flu present in the community. The Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention recommends that these drugs be used to supplement flu vaccine, not in place of it, except in circumstances where an individual cannot be given the vaccine because of other health
conditions. Antiviral medication may also lessen the symptoms of flu or make you less contagious after you have contracted the flu.

Myth: If you get the nasal spray vaccine, you can get other people sick with the flu even though you are protected.
Fact: It is extremely rare but it is possible to become infected with vaccine virus after close
contact with a person who has received the nasalspray vaccine. However, the person who contracts
the virus is unlikely to have symptoms of flu because the vaccine contains viruses that are too weak.

Fauquier Health Recommends Getting the Flu Vaccine this Flu Season

The flu season is upon us. Physicians and healthcare workers are already lining up for their flu vaccines, so they can stay healthy and take care of others if necessary. There is plenty of vaccine available this season and it’s not too early for residents to get vaccinated.

This year’s flu vaccine is a little different, said Dr. Esther Bahk, M.D. of Fauquier Health Internal Medicine at Lake Manassas. “The 2010-2011 flu vaccine, called the Fluzone vaccine, will protect against three different flu viruses -- the H1N1 virus and the two flu viruses that scientists feel will be most active this flu season.”

She added, “Another version of the vaccine, known as Fluzone High Dose, was developed specifically for older patients. There is an antigen in flu vaccine that is responsible for prompting a strong immune response. Fluzone High Dose has four times the normal amount of this antigen.

“The higher-dose vaccine is intended for individuals 65 and older; safety trials have determined that it is as free from side effects as the regular vaccine. If older patients who have had the Fluzone High Dose do get the flu, their bodies will mount a better response. The flu won’t hit them as hard as it would otherwise. The Centers for Disease Control does not recommend one vaccine or the other, but does strongly recommend a flu shot for senior citizens.”

Some may wonder if they were vaccinated for H1N1 last year, why they need to get vaccinated again. Dr. Bahk explained, “The Fluzone vaccine provides protection against several different viruses, not just H1N1, and even if someone was vaccinated last year, that vaccine’s effectiveness will have diminished over time.”

Fauquier Health Internal Medicine at Lake Manassas in Gainesville will hold a flu clinic on Tuesdays, October 26 and November 2 and 9. Residents can come into the office between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. and get vaccinated against flu. Those with questions about the clinic may call the office at 703-743-7300.

Dr. Bahk said, “I think it’s important to empower my patients to take more responsibility for their health. Don’t smoke, drink in moderation, eat a balanced and healthy diet, exercise regularly, and see your doctor for regular checkups. “And one more thing,” she says, “get vaccinated for flu this season.”

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Lights for Life Holiday Celebration Honors Longtime Nurse

The Fauquier Hospital Auxiliary will sponsor the annual Lights for Life celebration at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, December 1, in the hospital’s Sycamore Room.

Consider honoring a loved one by purchasing a light that will brighten a spruce tree on Hospital Hill during the holiday season.

Names of donors and those honored will be included in a program if the donation is received by November 10. Donations of $7 per light will go towards the Auxiliary’s pledge of a vein viewer for the hospital. Nurses using a vein finder are able to locate a patient’s veins more easily, making the administration of an IV less stressful for patients.

Lois Sutphin, RN, an Infusion Center nurse, will receive special recognition as this year’s Top of the Tree honoree. Mrs. Sutphin began working at Fauquier Hospital in 1973. She has been a strong supporter of the health system and is active in the American Cancer Society.

Patron donations are those between $100 and $499. Angel donations are at $500 or more; at this level of giving, each light will be $5. Donation forms may be found at the front desk of the hospital and at the Fauquier Health Foundation offices at 170 W. Shirley Avenue, Suite 101 in Warrenton. You may also download a form from Fauquier Health’s website at (Go to Ways to Give and look for the Lights for Life donation form).

Fauquier Health Holiday Faire Will Be November 19

Fauquier Health’s annual Holiday Faire will be held Friday, November 19, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., in the Bistro on the Hill and in the second-floor conference area at Fauquier Hospital.

The Faire is a popular community event. It began in 2003 with a few crafters and has grown steadily since -- the 2009 Holiday Faire featured 68 vendors. Proceeds of the day will be donated to the hospital’s Patient Concierge Program and its Family Crisis Fund, which provides emergency assistance to employees.

Those selling crafts, baked goods, jewelry or other holiday items may call Brenda Bohon at
ext. 3852 or Nis Russell at ext. 5900 to reserve a table. Tables are $35 to $70 each, depending on size and location, and will be reserved on a first come first served basis.

Fauquier Hospital Auxiliary Hosts Handbag Sale November 2 and 3

For holiday shoppers who want to get a jump on the holiday season, the Fauquier Hospital Auxiliary will host a handbag sale on Tuesday, November 2 and Wednesday, November 3, from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Fauquier Hospital Sycamore Room.

A huge selection of handbags, briefcases and luggage will be available at discounted prices. Credit cards will be accepted.

Proceeds from the sale will into the Auxiliary’s general fund. The Auxiliary is helping the hospital purchase a vein viewer so that nurses can more easily locate hard-to find veins for IV procedures. The Auxiliary will also be supporting KidSafe, a Fauquier Hospital-sponsored event that focuses on children’s health and safety.

Filmmaker Comes Home to Shoot Film at Fauquier Hospital

The Fauquier Times-Democrat wrote a nice article about R.J. Haynes, a young filmmaker who wrote a movie about the experience of donating a kidney. (See previous post.)

Part of the film was shot at Fauquier Hospital. (The story says the whole fourth floor, but it was actually just one part of the fourth floor. The Family Birthing Center was undisturbed.)

Click here to read the story:

Monday, October 18, 2010

New Infusion Center Welcomes Patients

Fauquier Hospital's new Infusion Center opened this morning. The completely renovated space is comfortable, spacious and offers lots of natural light. Dr. Salman Ali, oncologist/hematologist, has his office adjacent to the center for a seamless patient experience. Here, Lois Sutphin, RN, talks with chemotherapy patient Mary Tharpe.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Donald Mason Wins Health Tip Contest

As promised, Fauquier Hospital has announced that Donald Mason is the winner of the "Unique Health Tip" contest, held at the September 25 Family Wellness Fair.

Mr. Mason's health tip was:
"Take vitamin E and aspirin. Stay active and love your spouse."

We're suckers for a romance.

Mr. Mason was awarded a fitness bag from the Fauquier Health LIFE Fitness Center, filled with a water bottle, fitness band and heart-healthy cookbook.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Lights, Camera, Action at Fauquier Hospital

I am working late tonight, enabling a young filmmaker to shoot some scenes from a feature film at Fauquier Hospital. The movie is called "Kidney Beans." It's about a young man who donated a kidney to his cousin -- the story is based on the filmmaker's own experience.

R.J. Haynes, the screenwriter and director, has called on his deep roots in Fauquier to recruit actors and crew. R.J. graduated from Liberty High School a few years ago and from James Madison University last spring. From a young age, he was a regular on the stage at Fauquier Community Theatre and directed a summer show there too. Among the theater crowd in the county, R.J.'s is a familiar face.

R.J. and his crew will shoot here on the Fauquier Hospital campus for four evenings. They are thrilled to be able to shoot on location in a hospital. R.J. and his group have been professional and considerate, and we've managed to keep any hubbub well away from our patients.

The crew has borrowed some scrubs and hospital gowns for authenticity. We also have some IV setups in some of the scenes, but the actors declined to be hooked up. Must not be method actors.

More information about the film may be found at or by emailing

Monday, October 4, 2010

Unique Health Tips from Residents

One of the interactive activities at Fauquier Health's Family Wellness Fair September 25 was a booth where participants got to suggest a "unique health tip."

Twenty-six helpful residents offered suggestions. Many were ones we've all heard before:
  • Eat four small meals a day instead of three large ones.
  • Walk 30 minutes a day.
  • Do exercises.
  • Sleep more -- at night.
  • Fresh air; eat fruits and vegetables.
  • One person simply wrote "don't overeat."
One woman who followed the advice, "exercise and eat low-fat, whole foods" says she lost 160 pounds. That's success with a capital "S!"

Other contributors suggested specific supplements, among them multi-vitamins, aspirin, green tea, fish oil tablets, B vitamins, vitamin E, and a concoction of 1 teaspoon vinegar to 1/4 cup water every day. One person suggested that "one teaspoon turmeric powder dissolved in 8 ounces of water" acts as a natural antibiotic. Another said that "cucumber slices can be used to pacify food cravings," and that "chewing fennel seeds will clarify a heavy mucous taste in the mouth and stimulate digestion."

One man wrote that it's possible to cure toenail fungus by treating once a day: Soak the toe in apple cider vinegar so that the area is thoroughly wet, for a few minutes. Then dry the vinegar on the toe with a blow dryer. After a month, this man claims, the fungus will be gone.

Fauquier Health does not endorse these ideas, we're just reporting. But there's one idea we can really get behind. One gentleman wrote: "Stay active and love your spouse."

Winner of the Health Tips Contest will be announced soon.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Article Discusses Safety of Flu Vaccine for Kids with Allergies

With flu season upon us, here is an interesting article about flu vaccine and children with allergies.

Physicians Speak on Taming the Pain

As part of an ongoing physician seminar series, Fauquier Hospital will present two lectures in October; one on pain management on October 13, at 7 p.m., and another on techniques in spine surgery on October 20, at 7 p.m. All of the discussions will be held in the Sycamore rooms at the hospital.

The lecture on management of acute and chronic pain will be given by Daniel Heller, M.D, and the lecture on modern techniques in spine surgery will be given by orthopedist Charles Seal, M.D.

These lectures are part of a year-round series of physician lectures that Fauquier Health offers to the public free of charge. Fauquier Health is committed to educating the public about issues that are important to their health. Other lecture topics include childbirth, breast cancer, chronic pain, etc.

For more information about these lectures, call 540-316-3588 or log on to

Fauquier Health Thinks Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

As part of Fauquier Health’s commitment to the fight against breast cancer, the health system is sponsoring a free physician’s lecture about breast cancer. The health system is also providing free screening mammograms for women who turn 40 this year.

Fauquier Health will host a workshop called “Breast Cancer Basics: Risk, Prevention, Screenings and Resources” on October 27, at 6:30 p.m. at Fauquier Hospital in the Sycamore rooms.

Speakers include surgeon John Williams, M.D., and radiologists Maria Pace, M.D., and Jennifer Wargo M.D., who will discuss all aspects of the disease and its treatment.

These lectures are part of a year-round series of physician lectures that Fauquier Health offers to the public free of charge. Fauquier Health is committed to educating the public about issues that are important to their health.

Fauquier Health is also offering free screening mammograms throughout the year to anyone who turns 40 in 2010. To schedule a free mammogram, contact call 540-316-5800.

For more information about the workshop, call 540-316-3588 or log on to

Diabetes Fair at Fauquier Health LIFE Center October 2

The Fauquier Health LIFE Center will host the third annual Diabetes Product Fair on Saturday, October 2, from 1 to 3 p.m. Come out and enjoy light refreshments, a free chair massage and health screenings.

See the latest and greatest in diabetes-related products -- like the newest insulin pumps and continuous monitors, meters, medicines, etc.

Also, take advantage of free samples of educational materials, food guides, glucose meters, glucose tabs/gels, diabetes bars and shakes. An “Ask the Educator” table will be set up to answer any and all questions about diabetes.

A representative for the American Diabetes Association will also be here representing Fauquier Hospital’s “Step Out for Diabetes Walk” team, with information on how to get involved.

The LIFE Center is located in Suite 200 at 419 Holiday Court in Warrenton. For more information, call 540-316-2652 or e-mail diabetes educator Aren Dodge at