Tag Archives: Bainbridge Island

The Action is Hot Lungs, Harrison and Exercise – Part 3 of 3


The Heart & Vascular Center at Harrison, Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation is Ready to Go!

Good!  Many of us can use help meeting our goals!  How, when, where?

Mai-Lin Gonzales is Harrison Medical Center’s Interim Manager of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation – the first for Harrison.  Mai-Lin is working to establish cardiopulmonary rehabilitation centers throughout Kitsap County…beginning with the established Capri Cardiopulmonary I went through over a decade ago – a great program then.

Following is what patients have to look forward to …because an exercise program can make the difference between existing and quality life living for most of us.  Many studies have  proved a great shining star of preventative medicine is exercise.

1.  Where, when, time, type of equipment

Mai-Lin – We will be remodeling the current suite (Capri) 111 in the Bridgeview building during July.  The equipment will be the same type of treadmills, bikes, nusteps, arm ergometers, etc.  We will be purchasing them from CAPRI and integrating a few new pieces to make a complete set for our needs.

Me – I hope they add the recumbent elliptical stationary bike. The recumbent elliptical stationary bike is expensive but allows those of use with hip problems to exercise.  I could not pedal the regular recumbent bikes but was placed on the recumbent elliptical.  I could use it and over time with Anna Marx; I had magical results on it.  Anna is at Silverdale’s Kitsap Physical Therapy.

2.  Will a workout pool be available?

Mai-Lin – The pool at the YMCA will not be part of the maintenance program.  The pool is for Y members only.  It would be difficult to watch participants in the pool and on the upper cardio deck at the same time.   I would be happy to pursue asking the Y to consider creating a time that the pool could be open for a rehab population but it would be separate from the Harrison programs.

3. Will maintenance rehab be available

Mai-Lin – Maintenance will be available in Poulsbo and Port Orchard (through Ultimate Fitness) and Silverdale and Bremerton (through Harrison) and Kitsap Physical Therapy has a program in place in Kingston.  We are encouraging other community facilities to start maintenance classes for the cardiopulmonary population – hoping to find a fit in Belfair and Bainbridge to start with…

4.   Is Harrison is interested in a DASH Diet related Support Group? Even those who have had gastric bypass surgery must be vigilant about regaining the weight lost through the operation.

Mai-Lin: I will pursue this after I get Rehab up and running.

5. Is Harrison interested in and have a use for my excellent like new condition recumbent trikes?

Maui-Lin – We are restricted on space, I will not have an answer for this until we are in the space and have the equipment laid out.


I have had one goal for six or seven years.


This year is the first time I set a set date, 5 June to leave on a self-tour following the same route as the Big Ride.

A long list of mishaps, bone on bone left hip, lymphedema and fat body brought ne to 1 February 2011 when Marilyn Grindrod and I began our first swim coach session.  Over a two or three-month period of remarkable physical improvement, I KNEW I could pedal and ride again.

The day Marilyn and I went out to ride the trikes for the first time – my absolute confidence in being able to pedal due to the increasing physical shape, muscling and range of motion I was getting thanks to the swim sessions was knocked to the ground and stomped flat.  I could not do it.

That was then, now is now and we have begun again – twice a week – and I have a recumbent delta hand cycle that does work for me – no hip pain… more later.

A Florida Trike Shop owned and operated by physically challenged recumbent trike riders told me about the pedal pendulum.  I bought two – one from them and one set from Dave.  They work great on my trikes, but it does not work for me.  I cannot do more than a lower half pedal – too much pain to bring my leg up and over in a full pedal.  I can hear and feel the left hipbones rub when my leg is crested to move up and over.  We will keep working at it.

The hard lessons here sometimes- let go and move on.


Sitting and early death.

“Too much sitting leads to early death. In a recent study from the Cooper’s Institute.  The cardiovascular mortality outcomes related to sedentary behaviors of men after 21 years of follow-up showed an 82% greater risk of dying among men who reported spending more than 10 hours per week sitting in automobiles compared with men sitting in automobiles less than 4 hours per week (7).”


Thanks for reading… Sharon O’Hara


Cold in Silverdale… BI Senior Center Rocks

We gotta love the Bainbridge Island folks – again!  Here they go…this time their seniors are looking out after the folks caught out in the cold during emergencies…and prompt the question:  what happens to folks on oxygen or c-pap or bi-pap machines when the power goes out?  (corrected)

Some folks have a concentrator hooked up to bleed into the bi-pap machine and supply oxygen to the machine that keeps the airway open.

What happens to well prepared, emergency trained folks when their power goes out?  Some prepared folks have a generator they skipped a lot of evenings out to buy.

Our generator is geared to kick on five (thirty) seconds after the power dies…and it did.  Trouble is, it stopped after ten minutes or so.

Without the generator, it didn’t matter that the heat pump didn’t work.  We stopped caring that the technician scheduled to fix our heat pump hours earlier was stuck on BI and couldn’t get here.

It also didn’t matter that the propane company scheduled to deliver propane for our two tanks couldn’t negotiate the snowy, icy hills to get here…making the fact our propane fireplace insert didn’t work immaterial…we didn’t have enough propane to make it run.

For the first time I understood the saying, “Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong.”

The first night of a declining temperature, my husband, the Old Guy, worked out in the cold, freezing temperatures to fix the generator but first, he drove down to Sears in the big 4-wheel drive suv gas guzzler to get the part he needed.

He found Sears closed up early, then drove past the open Silverdale Firestone and lucked out.  What were the odds Firestone would have the exact size tubing he needed?  The clerk didn’t know but the owner not only found it, he gave it to him – no charge!  THANK YOU, FIRESTONE!

The Old Guy worked on the generator until 1300 (1:00AM) the next morning without luck.  At any time, we expected/hoped the power would return.  With cable phone, it didn’t work either.

Between a Nordstrom wool hat and REI, LL Bean layered clothing we were okay for a while.  I hoped to get the bi-pap and concentrator working before sleeping a second night without it.

The value of a down blanket cannot be underestimated.  I went to bed cold but woke up warm.  Getting out of that warm bed and dressed was a speedy process…both nights.

The temperature inside steadily dropped to a low 41 degrees and we began thinking of leaving with the dogs and the machines that helped supply a quality life – the  bi-pap and concentrator.

I thought about the homeless.  I wondered how other people right here in Kitsap County, who needed machines to live, managed without electricity?

What do we do for them?

Not everyone can get a generator.

Bainbridge Island Senior Center Folks – you rock!

“A group of Bainbridge seniors has urged the city to develop an overnight emergency shelter for years.

The Nov. 22, 2010, snowstorm served as a reminder of the need, but the seniors aren’t waiting around for the city this time.”


More later…. Sharon O’Hara

Happy 70th, Kentucky Girl!

Health Care Reform Gallops On

Rachel Pritchett interviewed several health care professionals resulting in her article on health care reform in today’s Kitsap Sun. I started to make a few comments in response, and then decided to put it here in COPD and Other Stuff.

Following is the url to Rachel’s article and my comments to excerpts of her story.
http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2009/aug/02/local-leaders-weigh-in-on-health-care-reform/unday, August 2, 2009

“Barbara Malich, CEO of Peninsula Community Health Services, said much of the reform talk is about expanding coverage, but rarely about improving access. Policies may lack dental care or mental-health coverage, causing even those who are insured to pay full freight or go without, she said.”
Patient here: Dentistry and mental health should be part of the health care picture for patients. I know patients whose doctor will not take Medicare premiums, forcing the patient to pay out of pocket. That is fine for those who can afford it but what happens to the folks who can’t afford it? What happens to them?

How well can the body be when a tooth is infected or other dental problems?
Teeth and mouth attach to the body…why do we separate one from the other? Good dental care is vital to one’s health.
‘Brian Wicks, president of The Doctors Clinic…“Right now, we’ve got everybody paid (based on units) of work performed, not compensated for coordination of care and disease prevention,” he said.…

Reform also should include incentives for providers to look at alternatives to traditional end-of-life care that often subjects patients to long stays in intensive-care units and risky and expensive surgeries. Instead, he said, providers should be encouraged to discuss options outside of surgery and the ICUs.

“Nobody compensates us for having that kind of group meeting to coordinate the care for that patient.” Wicks said.

To prevent widespread duplication of medical tests, providers should be able to access patients’ electronic records, even if those records are with a different provider, he said. Providers often end up ordering tests that have already been done because they can’t see the whole patient history, he said.’
Speaking as a patient:
When duplicate x-rays are taken within days of each other by different clinics (urgent care – surgeon) under the same umbrella, same town, is it currently ‘normal’ practice to order the second set only to squeeze the Medicare system? The reason given to this patient by the second doctor (surgeon) was that the first sets of x-rays were not clear enough.

If health reform passes, will the second doctor be unable to retake x-rays even though they are unsatisfactory to her/him?
“Huge savings can be made if reform moves toward a “value-based” payment system, according to Gary Kaplan, CEO of Virginia Mason Medical Center, which has a clinic on Bainbridge Island.

That means providers no longer would be rewarded in Medicare and other reimbursements for performing more tests than necessary, but for providing only treatment that is reasonable.”
Patient speaking: I think you are selling doctors short. Fifteen years ago, Virginia Mason had at least one straight up doctor who did not order a battery of tests when he could have, with dad on Medicare and two follow up insurances, we would not have known the difference.

The doctor examined dad, told us what was wrong…and asked if dad wanted to go through more extensive testing that, in his opinion, would give exactly the same diagnosis. The doctor explained dad’s options, answered our questions, even answered questions we had not thought to ask. We were satisfied and dad’s inner ear imbalance unfolded as the good doctor told us it would.
“Scott Bosch, chief executive officer of Harrison Medical Center, is among local provider chiefs hoping reform will help provide insurance for more of the 47 million people who now lack it.

His hospitals spend $30 million annually covering bad-debt and charity cases, with much of that loss coming from uninsured people seeking help through Harrison emergency rooms and urgent cares. If more of those people had insurance, Harrison’s losses might be less…”.”
Patient speaking: How can health care reform be addressed until the illegal alien dilemma is solved? What percent of the 47 million people without health insurance are non-citizens of this country?

Government has not proved successful with Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid – what bright light have the for’s seen that tell them that our government can run a health care system any better?
“Guy Stitt, president of AMI International Naval Analysts & Advisors of Bremerton, said reform should stop the practice of gender discrimination by insurance companies. It costs him twice as much to insure a 26-year-old female as a 26-year-old male on average, he said. … a woman in her 50s costs him 40 percent more than a man of the same age….”
Patient speaking: Why? What makes the insurance companies discriminate in such a manner? I know males pay more for car insurance…because they are in more accidents than women drivers are in at the same age.

The males higher auto insurance costs don’t reflect on his employment health care costs to his employer . Why, assuming woman have more medical costs than men, (keeping their sons, husbands and fathers healthy) force employers to favor male employees over females due to the increased health insurance cost to the business owner?
“Just about all the providers and insurers contacted by the Kitsap Sun said they were glad the topic has been moved to the top of national discussion. They also anticipate some kind of reform — maybe a lot less than hoped for — will pass in the fall…”
Patient here: Change is needed, but not if it takes away from our free enterprise system – the same system my immigrant family came here for – to become Americans. They dreamt of a country, America, where their ideas and hard work are compensated and where the only limitation was a person’s imagination and willingness to work.

Medicare and Medicaid penalize doctors by telling them what they will pay for each procedure…never mind the doctor office overhead and skyrocketing insurance costs. . Add to it the cost of repaying their horrendous medical school debt.

My PCP is indispensable to my health. I trust her and we are in a health care partnership. The two doctors I tried after my previous doctor died did not work out. They might have been good doctors but I didn’t like them. How can anyone form a partnership with a doctor they don’t like?
Doctoring is more than a diagnosis. For the good of our health, we should have the freedom to choose our doctor.

I saw the results of a patient forced to see a doctor barely able to be civil to her. The doctor might well have a different attitude with a patient not on Medicare and able to pay his set fees.

How many patients thrive and get better or the best they can be when forced to see doctors they don’t like or trust and vice versa?

Yes, for health care reform, but do not jump on a hurried agreement that penalizes patients, doctors, hospitals, health care workers or taxpayers and our own government in the long run.

More later… Sharon O’Hara

Swine Flu, Airline Fuel and Lungs


I made the following comments on Christopher Dunagan’s ‘Watching Our Waterways’ and thought it might bear repeating here in light of the Swine flu and the jet dumping fuel over Bainbridge Island – all affecting lungs.

“Most studies of health effects relate to long-term exposure”
“a heavy odor, which some considered overwhelming. ”

Well…the lungs filter and I imagine keep some residue from the toxins.
I do not know for sure, but it seems reasonable that it would, considering what we know about first hand smoking, second-hand smoke and lungs.

“Long-term exposure” might well describe the accumulative affect of inhaling different toxins over the years, not just inhaling one toxin over time.

Over time, the toxin residues build up in the lungs and may cause lung problems.
Asthma? COPD? Lung Cancer? Sarcoidosis (cause unknown) usually makes itself at home in the lungs too.
Over time of inhaling toxins, the lungs might become weakened and susceptible to such things as Pneumonia.
“If you inhale toxic materials, you can injure your lungs and cause chemical pneumonia.bugs and other diseases affecting the lungs….”

Take smokers for example (keep in mind only about 20% of smokers get COPD, (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) 4th leading cause of death in the US – While approximately 80% COPDers were smokers.

It might take 20 years for a person to develop symptoms enough to talk to their doctor about shortness of breath and other indicators. By that time, 50% of the lungs may already be destroyed.
Early detection can save lives by the simple and fast Spirometry test. Talk to your doctor, get tested – the quality life you save might be your own.

National Jewish is the leading Pulmonary Hospital in the US, according to US News and Reports – more importantly, National Jewish in Denver offers FREE Spirometry testing throughout the year.

We take our lungs for granted until they are damaged. So a little inhaling of the:
“” heavy odor, which some considered overwhelming. ”
Might well be the wake-up call or the 3nd to the last nail pounded in your lung coffin.

Remember our lungs filter everything we inhale – Be good to them.