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Recent blog posts

Fighting Cancer Fatigue

Posted on in Cancer

Medically reviewed by Rommel Lu, MD

Cancer patients often feel tired physically, mentally and emotionally. Not surprising, given the struggle and stress of testing, surgery, radiation therapy and the attack of chemotherapy on cancer cells.

When Two Joint Replacements are Better than One

Posted on in Orthopedics

Medically Reviewed by Michael Sutton, MD McLeod Orthopaedics Dillon

Not only was Darth Vader the father of Luke Skywalker in Star Wars, but all that light saber fighting took its toll. Darth – in real life, actor Dave Prowse – needed a Hip Replacement. And not just one hip – but both.

Medically reviewed by Carmen Piccolo, MD McLeod Vascular Associates

Swelling in your legs and ankles. New varicose veins. Legs that are restless, heavy, tired, aching or discolored.

Medically reviewed by Mary Beth Lewis, MD Interventional Radiologist

Most radiologists spend their days like electronic Sherlock Holmes, searching X-Rays, CT Scans, PET scans and more to find the source of a patient’s problem.

The Importance of Clinical Trials

Posted on in Cancer

Patients with childhood acute leukemia, Hodgkin’s disease and testicular cancer all have something in common: Cures for their cancers were developed through clinical trials.

Clinical trials can focus on diagnosis, screening and prevention. However, most of us think of clinical trials in the context of potential new treatments. Patients who exhaust standard treatments in surgery, chemotherapy or radiation therapy often explore participation in clinical trials, where they can gain access to promising new treatments not generally available elsewhere.

Impact and Concussions

Posted on in Orthopedics

From an interview on Good Morning Pee Dee with Chadley Runyan, MD Pee Dee Orthopaedic Associates

Next to Highway crashes, sports participation is the leading cause of traumatic brain injury, primarily concussions, among young people aged 15-24. Parents, coaches and orthopedic specialists are joining the media in paying closer attention to the effects of concussion.

Aura: Warning Sign of a Migraine…and a Future Stroke

Posted on in Heart Health

Medically reviewed by Timothy Hagen, DO Medical Director McLeod Neurology

Excruciating pain. Nausea. Sensitivity to light. The crushing symptoms of migraine headaches affect 15% of the population and, unfortunately, women are 3 times as likely as men to experience them.

After a Hysterectomy Do you Need a Pap Smear?

Posted on in Women's Health

(NOTE FOR READERS: Content for this article is from answers at the McLeod Women’s Health Forum “Straight Talk” This article contains straightforward discussions of women’s health problems and is designed for mature readers.)

Medically reviewed by Brad Campbell, MD, McLeod OB/GYN Assoc. & Paul Chandler, MD, McLeod Women’s Care


Posted on in Cancer

Medically reviewed by Tobin C. Hyman, MS, DABR Chief Medical Physicist

Radiation therapy for cancer is delivered in two primary forms: External, in which a large x-ray generator sits outside the patient directing beams into the patient and Internal, where the radiation is placed inside the patient mere millimeters from the tumor or directly inside the tumor.

Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

Posted on in Orthopedics

Medically reviewed by W.S. (Bill) Edwards, Jr., MD Pee Dee Spine Center

Many surgical procedures have involved smaller incisions and various minimally invasive techniques for quite some time. Due to the delicacy of the spine, surrounding muscles and nerve pathways, it took longer to introduce these higher-tech approaches to back operations. Now, they are relatively standard for a full range of spine surgeries.

“Traditional spine surgery used an incision about 6 inches long and we pulled or retracted the muscles out of the way to see the surgical site," says fellowship-trained McLeod Spine Surgeon W. S. (Bill) Edwards, Jr. “This often bruised or injured the muscle, leading to a longer recovery and more pain. Now, our technology uses small half-inch incisions and we gently spread the muscles to insert a small retractor or tube and then pass instruments through it. We can see what we are doing through the small surgical approach with an operating microscope that magnifies the surgical site and document our location with real time X-ray during the procedure.

TIA - Warning of A Stroke

Posted on in Heart Health

From an interview on Live 95 Good Morning Pee Dee with Alison Smock, MD Medical Director, McLeod Stroke Unit

Some people call a Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) a “mini-stroke.” To McLeod Neurologist Alison Smock, MD, the TIA is a warning sign not to be ignored.

Medically Reviewed by John T. Atkins, MD McLeod Pulmonary & Critical Care Associates

Let’s be honest: Smoking causes lung cancer.

(NOTE FOR READERS: Content for this article is taken from answers at the McLeod Women’s Health Forum “Straight Talk.")

Medically reviewed by Brad Campbell, MD, McLeod OB/GYN Assoc. & Paul Chandler, MD, McLeod Women’s Care

Medically reviewed by Barry Clark, MD Pee Dee Orthopedic Associates

Baby Boomers – those born between 1946 and 1964 – watched their parent’s age and decided that an sedentary middle age wasn’t for them. Golfing, biking, tennis, basketball, running, skiing – 50 became the new 40, 60 became the new 50...or was it the new 40? Those Boomers just wouldn’t stop moving -- until their knees and hips started aching. Now hitting 60+, the joints are aching more and the body parts are wearing out.

From an interview with Rajesh Bajaj, MD McLeod Oncology & Hematology Associates

It’s a case of good news, bad news, good news. We are all living longer. That’s good. But because we get to grow older, more of us are experiencing cancer. That’s bad. However, the latest good news is improvements in cancer treatment are continually being unveiled.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Brad Campbell McLeod OB/GYN Associates

One out of 3 women suffer from urinary incontinence, and “stress” incontinence is the most common form of bladder leakage. Dr. Brad Campbell discusses the main risk factors, possible treatments and the high satisfaction rates of women who are treated:

6 Great Tips to Help You Quit Smoking

Posted on in Heart Health

From an article by Dr. John W. Patton Pee Dee Cardiology

“Smoking is a dangerous, addictive habit that not only affects you, but the people around you,” says McLeod Cardiologist John “Will” Patton, MD. “It is also the number one cause of preventable disease and death worldwide, according to the American Lung Association.” Research leaves little doubt that quitting smoking will improve your health. As soon as you quit, your body begins to repair the damage caused by smoking. Your risk of heart and lung disease, cancer, stroke, heart attack, and vision problems will also decrease. It doesn't matter how long you have been smoking. You can always benefit from quitting. It’s also well known thatnicotine – a drug found in tobacco – is highly addictive. Withdrawal symptoms include: anxiety, depression, irritability, trouble sleeping and increased appetite. Users often return to smoking because of the withdrawal symptoms. You can increase your chances of success if you prepare to quit. 

Medically reviewed by Eric Heimberger, MD McLeod Orthopaedics Seacoast

First, a few facts. Feel free to use these at your next cookout or family dinner.

Reviewed by Taylor Holmes, PT, DPT, STAR-C McLeod Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist McLeod Outpatient Rehabilitation

Taking time to work out the muscles that control your urinary tract is often a first step in treating stress incontinence. McLeod Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist Taylor Holmes specializes in helping women taking control of their lives. This is what she told a gathering of more than 100 women during McLeod Women’s Health “Straight Talk”:

Atrial Fibrillation Triggers

Posted on in Heart Health

Medically reviewed by Rajesh Malik, MD Director of Electrophysiology for McLeod

People with atrial fibrillation – the erratic beating of your heart -- have a number of very good treatments available.

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