Hitting the snooze button on hospital noise (Infographic)

UMHS10427ReduceHospitalNoise-v3Monitors. Alarms. Pagers. People. Hospitals can get as noisy as other places we hang out during the day and there’s a negative side to all that noise. Patients can’t sleep soundly and noise interferes with healing.

The University of Michigan Health System has established quiet hours and tested sound diffusion panels — similar to ones used in music rehearsal rooms — to reduce hospital noise. Look at a breakdown of how hospital noise compares to everyday sounds. Continue reading

Advance Directives: documents that can speak for you, when you are unable to

advance directivesIf you have been to a hospital, clinic or doctor’s office in the last few years, chances are you’ve been asked if you have an advance directive or durable power of attorney for health care.

You may even have made a mental note to get that taken care of. You might even have completed an advanced directive in the past but have not reviewed it in years and may want to revise.

An advance directive is a thoughtful – as well as legal – document explaining your wishes in case you can’t speak for yourself about medical treatment you may receive in the future. It’s understandable that people put off thinking about Continue reading

Free Parkinson’s Movement & Dance classes

PD Dance 2

Patient Dennis Thompson says he feels more limber–mentally and physically–due to University of Michigan’s Parkinson’s Movement & Dance class. And now the class is free.

Parkinson’s and dance don’t usually go together—until now. Read how one patient feels about Turner Senior Resource Center’s Movement & Dance Classes for people with Parkinson’s disease.

With Parkinson’s disease (PD), there’s a feeling of loss, a feeling that I just don’t control my body as well as I used to. Sometimes it feels like a downward slope that doesn’t stop. As you can imagine, I was quite worried about this, and then one day when I was in the Turner Senior Resource Center, I picked up a flyer about their Parkinson’s Movement & Dance Class and decided to give it a try. I’m soon going to sign up for my third session.  Continue reading

Total artificial heart keeps advanced heart failure patient going and going

Design advances lead to smaller, more portable ventricular assist devices

Without a human heart, Stanley Larkin has visited a water park this summer and plays basketball with family and friends.

Stan Larkin is back in the game, using a backpack-sized power supply for his total artificial heart.

Stan Larkin is back in the game, using a backpack-sized power supply for his total artificial heart.

He has a total artificial heart which is used when end-stage heart failure affects both sides of the heart and other more common heart-supporting devices are inadequate to keep patients alive.

“The device Stan has is the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart, a mechanical pump to bridge him to transplantation,” says University of Michigan cardiac surgeon Jonathan Haft, M.D.  “He’s still listed for a heart transplant and we hope to transplant him as soon as an organ is available. In the meantime he can be at home, he can be functional, and continue to rehabilitate himself so he’s in the best possible shape when his opportunity comes.”

Continue reading

Find your element Saturday, August 29: Learn to pave your own leadership path

Join our department of pathology for a unique "TED-like" workshop focused on leadership

Pathology_FindYourElementAre you falling into the same daily routine? Searching for inspiration? Looking for new leadership skills to use going forward in your career?

Then join our department of pathology as they host Find Your Element: Traveling the Winding Road to Leadership, a unique “TED-like” workshop focused on leadership and the road to success in health care and beyond!

The workshop will take place Saturday, August 29, 2015 from 7:45 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. at Arthur Miller Theatre (1226 Murfin Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48109) on the University of Michigan Ann Arbor’s North Campus and features an exceptional guest speaker lineup of visionaries, medical leaders and executives.

We’ll have you inspired right from the beginning of the workshop. Sir Ken Robinson, New York Times bestselling author of The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything, will serve as the keynote speaker kicking off the workshop by focusing on the often unexpected turns that characterize the road to success. Continue reading

Blueberries and heart health

Michigan's blueberries are bursting with flavor

blueberries blogBlueberries are in season in Michigan, so now is a great time to indulge. Whether you take a trip to Southeast Michigan (where a majority of the state’s blueberries are grown), visit your local farmers market or pick up a basket at your neighborhood grocery store, you’ll be doing your tastebuds — and your heart — a favor.

Color me healthy

Blueberries contain high amounts of brightly colored pigments called anthocyanins, which deliver a number of benefits for heart health. While other berries such as strawberries and cranberries contain anthocyanins as well, blueberries contain an especially high amount. These powerhouse pigments may help to reduce blood pressure, lower “bad” cholesterol and keep arteries healthy. Eating berries has even been shown to decrease the risk of death from heart disease.

Continue reading