Cleveland Clinic hosted a popular ‘Speaking of Women’s Health’ event at Ahern’s Banquet Center in Avon Lake on Thurs., May 21.
Five physicians participated in the panel discussion, including moderator Rebecca Starck, MD, President of the new Avon Hospital.
Panelists included Lisa Cloud, MD, specialist in Preventive Medicine and Women’s Health, Jason Knight, MD, gynecologic oncologist, Erica Peters, MD, surgeon, and Christine Lopez, MD, Vice Chair Dermatology.
The audience of 175 guests enjoyed an evening of health screenings and dinner before an hour long discussion where physicians fielded a wide-range of questions from the guests.
Many of the physician responses urged guests to take advantage of a wide-variety of preventive and healthy living options. It is better to keep people healthy than to fall ill or develop a chronic medical condition.
“Cardiovascular disease is still the number one killer of women,” said Dr. Starck. She urged women to “watch what you eat and exercise every day.”
“Don’t step on the scale,” said Dr. Starck. “Everyone wants to get from here to there right away when it comes to weight loss. But don’t step on the scale all the time. Just watch what you eat and exercise. Then step on the scale in a month. You will be surprised.”
Dr. Knight called the emergence of the HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccine one of the most important developments in the fight against cancer. HPV is a sexually transmitted disease that can lead to several reproductive cancers. ‘We can prevent HPV with the intervention of the HPV vaccine,” said Dr. Knight. “Young people, both boys and girls, should be vaccinated before HPV can become a possibility.”
Dr. Peters added that mammograms and colorectal screenings are other ways early diagnosis can preempt the emergence of significant health threats. So are pap tests. People with genetic histories of cancers should be especially attuned to early-diagnostic testing.
One audience member asked how you can find out if the shingles virus is in your body. “Shingles is the reactivation of the chickenpox virus.If you have had chickenpox, you can develop shingles. I recommend getting vaccinated, but check with your insurance company first because it can be expensive,” said Dr. Cloud. It can be a small price to pay if it means avoiding an excruciating bout with shingles.
Other tips: Stay away from tanning booth, use sun screens (30 in children or if you have a predisposition to skin lesions) and take 2000 milligrams of vitamin D daily to avoid deficiencies. If you suffer from hair loss, get a blood test. It will reveal any deficiencies you may have. Is there a cure for arthritis pain? Although not proven, some patients report success with glucosamine and chondroitin. But try to avoid obesity to keep weight off joints.
And the best question of the night: “How can I lose weight?” Simply, “you have to use more calories than you take in,” responded Dr. Cloud.