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TSRHC Doctor Awarded for Excellence in Clinical Medicine

Every year, a faculty physician from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas is awarded the Patricia and William L. Watson, Jr., M.D. Award for Excellence in Clinical Medicine. This year it has been awarded to nationally recognized Dr. Marilynn G. Punaro, Professor of Pediatrics and TSRHC’s Medical Director of Pediatric Rheumatology.RIC_7598 copy

This is the fifth year the award has been distributed, as it was established by Dr. and Mrs. William Watson in 2009 through a generous donation.

Education and Career

Dr. Punaro has a long history of work in clinical care, starting in 1977 when she began her internship and residency at Children’s Medical Center. She then completed her specialty training in pediatric rheumatology in 1982 and started work at TSRHC.

In 1996 she became a member of the UT Southwestern faculty in the Department of Pediatrics and in 1998 she became Director of Arthritis Services at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children. Then she became Division Director for Pediatric Rheumatology in the UT Southwestern Department of Pediatrics in 2004.

Reputation in the Field

Those that know and work with her praise her for her abilities as a clinician and diagnostician, as well as her attitude and loyalty towards her patients.

Dr. Punaro’s name has been heard by those in the field nationwide as well, as she is a member of professional societies and an editor and reviewer of articles in top professional journals for pediatric rheumatology.

Her peers refer to her as a “Texas Super Doctor,” and one of the “Best Doctors in America.”

Congratulations Dr. Punaro!!

2014 Holiday Card Artwork Contest

The holiday season is just around the corner and TSRHC
needs your help creating cards for hundreds of people to enjoy!

Holiday Gold

Each year, TSRHC patients and friends are invited to participate in the annual holiday card artwork contest. Use your imagination to draw and design any kind of holiday artwork – ornaments, candy canes, snowmen – the possibilities are endless!

If your design is chosen, it will be featured on one of TSRHC holiday cards and available for purchase by anyone who wants to spread the spirit of the season.

Please follow link below to download the submission form. You may submit as many entries as you would like. All artwork is due August 15, 2014, and can be dropped off at the TSRHC Front Desk or mailed to the address on the form.

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Happy drawing!

Download Submission Form

Courtney’s Story – Life After Scoliosis Surgery

courtney scoliosis basketball 3Finding out you have scoliosis is scary, and for fifth grader Courtney Walker, it was no different. Born with a competitive nature, she had many aspirations to play sports in school, particularly basketball. Each of her sisters grew taller than her mother, and she had the same goal. Finding out she had a curve in her spine only temporarily dashed her dreams.

Starting the Journey

courtney scoliosis basketball 2Once her family found Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, they immediately got to work to set her spine straight. Naturally, her parents were very worried about her and thought that she might never walk again. However, Courtney was more optimistic. She never felt that anything was wrong with her before her diagnosis, and she was positive she would recover after the surgery.

Surgery and Road to Recovery

courtney scoliosis basketballThe surgeons at TSRHC placed rods in Courtney’s spine and screwed them into place. This corrected the curve in her back and she woke up from her scoliosis surgery with a smile on her face. She immediately began to recover and jumped back into her favorite sports. Two years later, she is practicing gymnastics, and can even do a back handspring by herself.

At TSRHC, Courtney had doctors and surgeons that believed in her, and that faith and hope allowed her to persevere until she accomplished every goal she had set for herself before her diagnosis. As Courtney reached the end of eighth grade, she accomplished the goal of growing taller than her mother – and her mom couldn’t be more proud.

Learn more about Courtney through her YouTube Video:

Kids Help Create Mobility Test for TSRHC

LEE_2703AChildren attending a summer camp at the Dallas Zoo have been helping researchers at TSRHC develop a mobility test to measure the functional ability of young amputees.

The test has been available for adults for a while: the Comprehensive High-level Activity Mobility Predictor (CHAMP) was designed by the military to monitor the progress of veterans with amputations. Researchers at TSRHC have decided to take CHAMP and adjust its parameters to fit younger amputees. To achieve this, they turned to the Dallas Zoo and their summer camp attendees for help.

Children at the camp were put throughAshlynn Johnson; staff Wilshaw Stevens a four-part course, similar to an obstacle course, which timed them as they performed various physical activities. One portion of the test included balancing on one foot with the other foot held over a small cone.

The results of the summer camp kids will be used as a base line for the new CHAMP test for young amputees. That way, a patient’s progress can be compared with others in her own age group, instead of relying on the original test designed for adults.

Since last summer, researchers have gathered the results of 275 campers ages 5 to 14, and they plan on testing hundreds more campers this summer. Ultimately, they hope to have data from 100 kids in each age group from 5 to 18, so the test can be comprehensive.

With the help of these able-bodied camp goers, soon patients at TSRHC will have an effective CHAMP test to measure their progress.

For more information, visit our Movement Science page on our website or view the recent article in the Dallas Morning News. Stay tuned for another news story on Dallas’ CBS11 later this week!

 

 

Participate in ALON’s “Load the Code” to help give back to TSRHC!

Want a chance to win a new Ford F-150 4×4 pickup truck?

Alon_LTC_CharityIcon_240x400TSRHC is so excited to be one of the charities chosen for ALON’s “Load the Code” program this summer! Through this program, TSRHC will have the chance to win part of the $100,000 that ALON is donating to local charities. By following these easy steps to vote for TSRHC, you will be entered to win free gas and a new FORD F-150 4X4 truck….and the best part is that it won’t cost you a thing!

1. Grab the App
: Just go to the Apple App Store on your iPhone or Google Play on your Android phone and download the free ALON “Load the Code” app. Launch the app, set up a user name and password and you are ready to play.

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2. Scan to Play: 
Visit any participating ALON store and go inside to the special “Load the Code” poster or easel card with the QR code. Launch you ALON app and scan the code. Every time you scan you will be entered into the contest. The more you scan the better your odds of winning! You can enter once a day. You can also earn badges for scanning in different stores or at different times of day. You can also randomly “Instant Win” ALON YouCash for free gas! No purchase necessary.

3. Do Some Good: 
After you scan a code you can vote for TSRHC! This will increase our chances of winning a part of the $100,000 that ALON is donating to charity.

Good luck and thank you for participating in this fun summer program that benefits TSRHC!

** “Load the Code” runs now through September 30, 2014. Watch the YouTube video or visit www.myalon.com/loadthecode for more details.

Two TSRHC Patients Win Prestigious Tommy Tranchin Award

This year’s winners of the Tommy Tranchin award have been announced, and we’re proud to report that two out of the six recipients are TSRHC patients.

The two winners, Alexander Milner and Drew Walton, are young men who embody the heart and spirit of the award—neither one lets a disability get in the way of achieving their dreams.

The Tommy Tranchin Award, sponsored by the Dallas Foundation, was established by Laurie and Rob Tranchin to continue the legacy of their son, Tommy, whose hearing disability didn’t stop him from pursuing a passion for music. The award gives recipients the opportunity to follow their dreams by granting them a stipend (up to $1,500) to be used toward a proposed activity for which they have a passion.

For Alexander Milner, his dream is to one day compete in the Olympics. At age 3, Alexander was WAT_3922stricken with polio, which caused paralysis in his left leg. He initially began learning gymnastics as a form of physical therapy, but he quickly developed a love for the sport.

Alexander is now one of the top gymnasts in the state of Texas and hopes to take his passion all the way to the Olympics. With help from the Tommy Tranchin Award, Alexander will be able to travel to a prestigious gymnastics competition.

Drew Walton has cerebral palsy. When he was an infant, a pediatrician told Drew’s mother that heDrew Walton Tommy Tranchin Award would never learn to walk or talk. As a patient at TSRHC, Drew has exceeded everyone’s expectations—earning straight A’s at Waxahachie High School, where he also manages the track and football teams.

Drew applied for the Tommy Tranchin Award, with help from his teacher, Mr. Galliger. As an award recipient, Drew will receive Dragon software, a laptop computer, printer and microphone, which will give him the ability to further his studies.

Competition for the Tommy Tranchin Award was extremely strong this year, and we’re proud that two of our patients were able to show the determination, commitment and perseverance necessary to win. The TSRHC staff congratulates Alexander and Drew on this tremendous achievement.

Crayon Club to Host Character Breakfast

TSRHC’s Crayon Club is hosting the second annual magical meet-and-greet experience complete with more than 20 favorite children’s characters (ie: super heroes, team mascots and princesses) on Saturday, June 28 from 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. The event will feature breakfast, an autograph session, silent auction, face painting and other activities.

Set Up

Tickets are:
Child Ticket: $15
Adult Ticket: $25
Table (for 8): $150
Note: Admission is free for children under two. 

Crayon Club was established to unite individuals dedicated to improving the lives of children. Together, through volunteerism, education and philanthropy, Crayon Club supports the mission ofTexas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children.

PURCHASE TICKETS

Join Crayon Club on Facebook to read more about upcoming fundraising and volunteer opportunities and see photos from recent events!

Super heros; Coen Carpenter as Capt. America; Nickolas Garcia; Kingston EdwardsReese Pritchett, Ellie Pritchett, Lexie Pritchett, Snow White

Talk of the Town Benefiting TSRHC

The Rays of Light Foundation will be hosting The Talk of the Town fundraising event benefiting Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, along with Texas Ranger’s Baseball Foundation, The Dallas Stars Foundation, The Alzheimer’s Association – Greater Dallas Chapter and Temple Emanu-El Foundation.

In this first of its kind event, friends of TSRHC can have the chance to bid on a chance to join legendary broadcasters Chuck Cooperstein, Eric Nadal, Brad Sham and Ralph Strangis on Wednesday, July 16 at Kirby’s Prime Steakhouse in Southlake as they share unforgettable stories in an intimate gathering benefiting their favorite local charities.

Dinner with the legendary broadcasters includes:

  • Kirby’s Prime Steakhouse in Southlake dinner with wine pairing prepared by Executive Chef Daniel Nemec and staff
  • John Rhadigan from FOX sports will emcee the evening
  • Live Jazz Piano – Art Riddles of Art Riddles Trio
  • During dessert, the four announcers will share video clips and stories of their favorite “calls”
  • Complimentary Hand Rolled Cigars by House of Cigars
  • Silent auction including: an all-inclusive visit to “Shark Tank” with Mark Cuban in Los Angeles, California, a day with the announcer of choice, tickets to various sporting events and autographed memorabilia

TalkOfTheTown_FB_link_2_2 copyThe event is a unique fundraising opportunity that will bring together the voices of the four major Dallas sports franchises in a casual setting for an evening of fine food and drink and stellar stories of Dallas sports from the men who have called, collectively, three Super Bowls, the NBA Championship, the Stanley Cup and two World Series appearances of the Cowboys, Mavericks, Stars and Rangers.

All proceeds from seats purchased at Chuck Cooperstein’s table will be donated to Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, along with items up for bid at a silent auction.

Bidding for seats starts at a minimum bid of $200 for a seat. Online bidding ends at 4 p.m. on Thursday, July 11.

BID NOW

Emily’s Story – Chapter Two

5Patients with scoliosis are treated at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children all the time, but TSRHC patient Emily’s case is different. Her scoliosis was already extreme at a very young age, forcing her to make TSHRC like a second home. She became well known around the hospital for her happy spirit and you may remember seeing our very popular first video of her! Now eight years later– we catch up with her to see how she’s doing.

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Since her final scoliosis surgery fused permanent rods to her spine, Emily hasn’t had any problems with her scoliosis. She continues to return to the hospital occasionally for checkups, but her doctor, Dr. Rathjen, has cleared her to participate in some of her favorite activities including: fishing, horseback riding and golfing.

Emily Spaulding age 12 of_ Midland_22Participating in Studies

Emily returns to the hospital periodically for testing in order to help doctors researching early onset scoliosis. Currently, there is no explanation for why she was born with a 55 degree curve in her spine because no one else in her family has had scoliosis. However, the good news is that the doctors have concluded that she will not pass it down to her own kids.

Growing Up Fast

After having 33 surgeries over the course of ten years, Emily had no other choice than to grow up fast.

Watch Emily’s Story – Chapter Two, to catch up with the Midland 13-year-old and hear more about her experience at TSRHC!

TSRHC Patients Compete at UCO Endeavor Games

Post by TSRHC Prosthetist Amanda Brown, CPO, LPO

photo 2 copyJune 5, 2014 kicked off the 15th annual UCO Endeavor Games where athletes gathered from around the world to participate in Paralympic Sporting Events. These games included track and field, swimming, wheelchair basketball, sitting volleyball, archery and many more.  All ages were welcome and among the many participants were seven patients from TSRHC!

The competitive nature of the games was exhilarating and so exciting to watch.  Many of the adult athletes included paralympians who participated in the 2012 London Paralympic Games, as well as veterans from around the country.  The youth athletes included children who dream of photo 3 copybecoming a competitive athlete and love to participate in sporting events. This year’s unique group of participants allowed each athlete to compete against each other and also learn from each other.  The mentoring and encouragement throughout the weekend was remarkable and it was a true representation of the leadership and love for the games.

TSRHC’s seven participating patients represented the hospital with flying colors!  Multiple gold medals were won and many of them participated in numerous events. Two of our patients were noticed by the USA Olympic Committee for both Track and Swimming and five of our kids qualified for Junior Nationals in July.  We even had one of our many star patients win the “Junior Athlete of the Year Award” which was presented at the Athlete Banquet!

photo 19 copyWe are very proud of all of our patients who participated in the Endeavor Games.  Our vision here at the hospital is to always demonstrate the importance of encouraging our patients to pursue their dreams and goals. The Endeavor Games is an opportunity for our patients to compete and build confidence by surrounding themselves with an amazing support system.