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Patient Embraces the Chance to Help Others


It’s not every day you see a 10-year-old in a scoliosis brace organizing a crawfish boil, but that’s exactly what Scottish Rite Hospital patient Rowan, of Dallas, does each year at her annual Crawfish for the Curve event. Since 2012, Rowan and her family have been serving up a Cajun feast as a way to raise awareness and money for the hospital where Rowan receives treatment for scoliosis. Motivated by a desire to help patients like her, Rowan has grown this event from a backyard family gathering to a full-blown neighborhood block party.

“Through this event, we have been able to tell others about the hospital and all the kids they help,” says Rowan. Crawfish for the Curve has not only successfully raised awareness, the event has raised more than $40,000 for the treatment of scoliosis.

Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 1.04.13 PMOne of Rowan’s most vivid memories from the hospital is visiting the Child Life playroom. “I felt really happy there,” she recalls. “It was the first time I smiled after getting my body cast.”

Rowan wants to give other patients the same positive experience, so a special part of her donation includes iPads specifically for the playroom. She hopes the devices will make other patients smile just like she did.

Rowan is a shining example of overcoming challenges and putting others first. Her advice to kids newly diagnosed with scoliosis is to embrace the condition. “What makes you different also makes you unique and special,” she explains, “and that’s a really good thing.”

Are Your Young Athletes Asking about Cupping and Other Non-Traditional Treatments?

Athletes on the international stage frequently bring light to alternatives to common medical treatments. For instance, in the 2012 games, beach volleyball players and many others raised awareness of using special taping to help with injuries and muscle activation. In the early days of the 2016 games, a new technique has come to the surface and we’re betting your young athletes may want to know more about it.

Our Sports Medicine team knows there are numerous tools in the toolbox for treating sports injuries, improving recovery and in some cases naturally improving performance. Consistently, their advice to young athletes is to learn the risks and benefits associated with a treatment before trying something new. Here are some thoughts on the latest trend, cupping therapy.

Cupping Therapy

Originally requiring an incision in the skin, this ancient Chinese therapy used to increase blood flow is now practiced as “dry cupping.” Cups, typically made of silicone, are placed on areas of pain or soreness before or after an event. A small pump on the cup is used to separate the layers of skin and underlying fascia and muscle. The separation allows blood vessels in sore areas to fill with blood for healing. The increased blood flow shows up as redness in the area inside the cup, leaving purple circular spots for several days after the treatment.

Risks for this treatment are low, but the process can be painful. The treatment should not be used during early stages after an injury.

Read our recent article to help you evaluate supplements and how to educate your young athlete on this topic.

For information about injury prevention and pediatric sports medicine, please visit our website at scottishritehospital.org/sports.

Patients Rock the Runway in JCPenney Fashion Show

The ninth annual JCPenney Successful Bridges Fashion Show recently gave some of our spina bifida patients an opportunity to shine in the spotlight. The event took place Friday, August 5, at the JCPenney Home Office, in Plano, Texas. Learn more about this event and discover how the Successful Bridges Teen program at Scottish Rite Hospital gives patients confidence, self-esteem, and the courage to empower themselves and inspire others like them.

Scottish Rite Patients Rock the Runway

Thanks to a friendship with JCPenney, the Successful Bridges Fashion Show gives teens being treated for spina bifida a setting to showcase their individuality amid community support. This friend-raising, rather than fundraising, event boosts teens’ self-confidence.

Created in May 2003, our Successful Bridges Teen Program aims to help teen patients with spina bifida build bridges of self-sufficiency. In addition, this program also supports the family members of these patients, giving moms, dads, siblings, and caregivers the knowledge and the help to guide their loved ones through important teenage developmental milestones. Community collaborations, like the friendship between Scottish Rite Hospital and JCPenney, further enhance the Successful Bridges Teen program.

Defining Developmental Disabilities

Scottish Rite Hospital treats many pediatric patients with developmental disabilities. These disabilities are generally associated with orthopedic conditions, including cerebral palsy (limited to related orthopedic conditions), specific genetic conditions with orthopedic complications, and spina bifida.

In addition to health-related support, Scottish Rite Hospital maintains two clinics for children with developmental disabilities. These clinics give children the knowledge and confidence to care for themselves, maximize their health, and remain independent as possible.

**View Media Coverage from this year’s event featured on Dallas’ local NBC and CW.

Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children: Patient Care, Education, & Research

Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children opened its doors in 1921 and over the last 95 years it has become one of the top pediatric orthopedic hospitals in the country. Ortho Group Photo 2016_FinalAt the core of our mission are three main pillars: patient care, research, and education. The outstanding patient care provided at the hospital is shown each and everyday through the interactions our medical staff has with all of our patients and families. The research conducted is designed to treat the entire child and his/her specific needs. The hospital is the training ground for the next generation of world-class pediatric orthopedic physicians through the fellowship program. It is the superior patient care, the groundbreaking research, and education of physicians that makes Scottish Rite Hospital such a special place.

Scottish Rite Hospital is a unique institution because of its many resources when it comes to innovation and research. The success of the hospital and its top of the line patient care is closely tied to the collaborative relationship with UT Southwestern Medical Center (UTSW). Monday Night Conference_26All of our medical staff hold faculty appointments in various departments at UTSW, including Orthopedic Surgery and Pediatrics. It is a strong, working relationship in which Scottish Rite Hospital has become one of the top research institutions in pediatric orthopedics. The research at Scottish Rite Hospital is regulated by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) at UTSW, which serves as the governing body for over 100 of our clinical research studies. Additionally, Scottish Rite Hospital welcomes several UTSW orthopedic residents to complete pediatric rotations throughout the year. These residents work closely with our medical staff and research department to gain experience both hands on in clinic and surgery, as well as with various research studies.

Scottish Rite Hospital is internationally known as a premier research and teaching hospital. Since research is at the forefront of providing the best patient care, it is necessary to have an environment where learning is ongoing and teaching is an everyday practice. The hospital provides several areas for medical staff, fellows, residents and all other staff to continue their education through weekly/monthly conferences, symposiums, visiting professorships and much more. An extraordinary aspect of Scottish Rite Hospital is the Dorothy & Bryant Edwards Fellowship in Pediatric Orthopedics and Scoliosis.

 

This program provides the fellows an opportunity to work with some of the most experienced pediatric orthopedic staff in the country. The yearlong fellowship includes becoming a member of the patient care team, high-level surgical experience, and the opportunity to work closely with the research team on a topic of their choice. Even through the fellowship, research is at the core of the curriculum. The fellows are required to complete at least one scientific manuscript at Scottish Rite Hospital and will have the opportunity to present their work at the annual Brandon Carrell Visiting Professorship. This conference, hosted by the hospital, is an annual course designed for pediatric orthopedic surgeons and others with an interest in pediatric orthopedic practices to keep up-to-date on the latest in groundbreaking research. The hospital welcomes a visiting professor each year, along with other medical professionals, who will present on their current research projects. It is another opportunity for our medical staff to discuss and debate various techniques, which facilitates ongoing education for all.

Fellowship Programs:

It is through our strong relationship with UT Southwestern Medical Center, accompanied by the continuous learning environment, which has established Scottish Rite Hospital as a leading research institution for pediatric orthopedics. Research continues to be the engine that drives important clinical decision making to improve the care by finding new and better techniques to treat our patients.

Get to Know Our SRH Staff – Psychology Department

There are many reasons why Scottish Rite Hospital is a unique and special place, and giving our patients access to a renowned Psychology department is one of the ways we set ourselves apart.

Rooted in our mission of treating the whole child, our Psychology department helps kids with everything from mentally preparing for surgery to coping with a sports injury to overcoming the long recovery process associated with many of the procedures done at our hospital.

Psychology with Ashley Imoh_01According to department director Sandy Roland, Ph.D., “What giving children back their childhood means to me is that even when we are treating a child for a specific orthopedic condition, we never lose sight of the whole child during that process.” In 2015, they saw an average of 190 patients a month, with a range of conditions from all services at Scottish Rite Hospital: neurology, orthopedics, rheumatology and hand, among others. They also work with patients on non-orthopedic matters including individual and family therapy as well as behavior and pain management.

Above and beyond all the positive work they are doing with our patients, our Psychology department is making waves in the medical world as well. They conduct research, publish papers and present at prestigious medical conferences about the correlation between psychological risk factors and effects on postoperative recovery. They have had papers published in non-psychology journals, demonstrating the importance of an interdisciplinary approach in pediatric orthopedic care.

As the only pediatric orthopedic institution with a dedicated psychology department, who understand the medical conditions and how it affects all aspects of a patient, we are blazing a trail of holistic treatment for the medical community to follow.

Join our Team

Do you or someone you know have an interest in pursuing a career in psychology? We’re currently hiring a psychologist. Qualified candidates must hold a Doctorate in Psychology with licensure or licensure eligibility issued by the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists (TSBEP). For more information on the position and to apply, read more on our website.

August: Haven’s Moment to Shine

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Meet Haven, age 13, of Dallas.

My Defining Moment:

My parents thought I might have dyslexia, so they took me to Scottish Rite Hospital for testing.

My Moment to Remember:

They shared before and after videos of me reading that showed my improvement. Finally, I knew I could do well in school.

My Moment to Shine:

Before, I never raised my hand in class to answer a question or volunteer to read. Now, I don’t hesitate.

Give a Patient like Haven a Moment to Shine – Your contribution of $90 provides supplies for a child to receive one year of dyslexia instruction using TSRHC’s Take Flight curriculum. To donate or learn more about the hospital’s Luke Waites Center for Dyslexia and Learning Disorders, please visit scottishritehospital.org.

Returning to Play after an Injury – Special Considerations for Young Athletes

Whether your child is the star quarterback ready for college recruiters or just starting a youth sports program, we know safety is important to you. As pediatric sports medicine specialists, we are also dedicated to preventing injuries. Research has shown that overuse injuries, problems from repetitive motions with running, jumping and throwing, are preventable. An evolution of equipment and rules has helped to reduce other injuries in young athletes. Jamie Wightman, Scottish Rite Hospital athletic trainer, reminds us that “young athletes are still growing, so it is important to remember that these injuries often happen at sensitive areas of the bone called growth plates.”

Demiya Warren age 16_22Some injuries are going to happen, and once they do, it’s important to respond appropriately and to return to sports only when the injured area is ready. This is important for a couple of reasons. First, there is no need to play with pain or make pain and symptoms last longer because the area hasn’t healed. Additionally, pain can cause an athlete to compensate or begin to use their body differently to protect the injury. This can lead to new injuries.

We know what it takes to get back on the field after an injury. Depending on the injury, recommendations may include rest and rehabilitation, or in some cases surgery may be considered. We asked our sports medicine experts to tell us a few things they consider when helping families discuss returning a young athlete to sports. Here is what they told us:

  • Level of competition – What was the athlete’s level of competition before the injury, and is he or she planning to return to that level?
  • Sport, position and season timing – What is the sport and position(s) played? How much of the season is left?
  • Years of Growing Left – How long do we think the child will continue to grow and are the treatment options different based on their growth?
  • History of previous similar injuries – Has the athlete had similar injuries before, and if so, how many times?
  • Functional Strength and Stability – How well does the athlete perform standardized tests of stability and strength and will those skills translate to his or her chosen sport?

These are just a few of the questions to consider, and there are no right or wrong answers. That’s why a multi-disciplinary team of pediatricians, pediatric orthopedic surgeons, physical therapists, athletic trainers, psychologists and others can provide the best advice. As a research and teaching hospital, we use evidence to help families make decisions, not our experience alone.

For information about injury prevention and pediatric sports medicine, please visit our website at scottishritehospital.org/sports.

Heat Illness in Young Athletes

Recognizing and responding to the signs and symptoms of heat illness is critically important. Though body temperature may not be elevated, heat illness may still be present.

Signs and Symptoms of Heat Illness

  • Weakness
  • Vomiting
  • Excessive Thirst
  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Light-headedness

Keeping Cool When Exercising in the Heat

  • Take rest and water breaks, every 15 – 20 minutes
  • Avoid the hottest hours from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Drink a sports drink with electrolytes and 6-8% carbohydrates when training lasts over 60 minutes
  • Avoid training in direct sunlight
  • Take breaks in the shade
  • Encourage removal of equipment during breaks, e.g. helmet
  • Wear loose-fitting, light-colored and moisture-wicking clothing

Be prepared

  • Prepare ice and water before training sessions
  • Limit consumption of caffeinated and sugary beverages
  • Gradually increase physical activity in the heat
  • Continue conditioning in the off-season
  • Don’t train in the heat while you are sick or have a fever

Ways to respond quickly to signs and symptoms of heat illness

  • Full body immersion in an ice bath
  • Iced down towels applied all over the body

Read this PDF about proper hydration in young athletes. Learn more about our pediatric sports medicine at scottishritehospital.org/sports.

2016 LLRS Annual Meeting: Dr. Karl E. Rathjen Appointed President of the Organization

The Limb Lengthening and Reconstruction Society (LLRS), an association for the study and application of the methods of Ilizarov-North America, is holding its 25th Annual Scientific Meeting in Charleston, South Carolina on July 22 and 23. The LLRS is an organization dedicated to researching new treatment for limb reconstruction, limb lengthening, extremity deformity correction, and complex fracture treatment. Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children is represented at the meeting by Karl E. Rathjen, M.D., David A. Podeszwa, M.D., John Birch, M.D., Alexander Cherkashin, M.D., Mikhail Samchukov, M.D., and current fellow, Connor Green.

Dr-Karl-RathjenAssistant Chief of Staff, Dr. Karl E. Rathjen, has served as the Vice President of LLRS for the past calendar year and was recently appointed President of the organization for the year 2016-2017. At the 2016 annual meeting, Rathjen will be co-leading the two-day meeting, while several of the hospital’s doctors and fellows will be presenting their work.

Drs. David Podeszwa, Alexander Cherkashin, and fellow, Connor Green, have the opportunity to discuss several topics to the LLRS group, which encompass some of the cutting edge research happening within the hospital’s Center for Excellence in Limb Lengthening and Reconstruction (CELLR). CELLR focuses on improving the lives of patients with different leg length discrepancies and limb deformities. Co-directed by Dr. David A. Podeszwa and Dr. Mikhail Samchukov, the center has more than 20 United States and International patents and continues to be recognized as one of the top centers in this field. The Limb Lengthening and Reconstruction Society Annual Scientific Meeting is another opportunity for our doctors and researchers to showcase the work of Scottish Rite Hospital to other institutions from across the country.

Russian Medical Leaders to Visit Scottish Rite Hospital, Advance Partnership

Dr. Alexander Gubin, director of the Russian Ilizarov Scientific Center for Restorative Traumatology and Orthopaedics, and his wife, Dr. Elizabeth Gubin, a neurologist, will visit Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children from July 24-27, part of a growing relationship between the center and Scottish Rite Hospital.

The hospital co-hosted the center’s International Scientific and Practical Conference in June, the first time that the center has collaborated with an outside institution to organize the annual meeting. It was attended by 500 medical professionals from 31 countries and marked the 45th anniversary of the center, the 65th anniversary of the development of the Ilizarov technique and the 95th birthday of the late Professor Ilizarov.

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L to R: Drs. Birch, Gubin and Podeszwa in Kurgan

Gubin’s vision is to open up the center to the world, starting with this ongoing exchange with Scottish Rite Hospital. Since the 1990s, the hospital has developed a number of patented modifications to the original Ilizarov technique resulting in a series of devices known as the TRUE/LOKTM External Fixation System. Gubin is interested in integrating these advances into the treatment of limb differences at the center, located in Kurgan, Russia.

Elizabeth Gubin, who practices at Kurgan Children’s Hospital, will be studying Scottish Rite Hospital’s treatment of patients with cerebral palsy. She is setting up a cerebral palsy center in Kurgan and will meet with hospital neurologists and observe clinical visits and procedures.

Alexander Gubin visited Scottish Rite Hospital and other Western institutions that employ the Ilizarov technique before deciding to collaborate with the Dallas hospital. Hospital researchers Mikhail Samchukov, Alex Cherkashin and Marina Makarov are former leaders of the Ilizarov center and worked directly with Ilizarov himself. Though the relationship goes back many years, a formal exchange of physicians was established in 2014. Two Russian orthopedic surgeons from the center have already visited Scottish Rite Hospital. Dr. David Podeszwa, the newly appointed co-director of the hospital’s Center for Excellence in Limb Lengthening and Reconstruction, went to Russia in 2015.

The collaboration also includes two limb lengthening/reconstruction studies, with plans to expand cooperative research. The center will continue to send its physicians to Scottish Rite Hospital for training, and hospital orthopedists, researchers and fellows will have the opportunity to visit the center in Russia.

DSC00096Drs. Samchukov, Cherkashin, Podeszwa, Makarov and John Birch lectured and moderated panels at the Russian conference, and Samchukov, Birch and Cherkashin (pictured left) were awarded honorary professorships for their contributions to the Ilizarov technique, the only three North Americans to receive the prestigious distinction at the meeting.

While in Kurgan, Cherkashin and Samchukov also met with an international group of surgeons at the annual TRUE/LOKTM Hex Summit to get their feedback on the Hex device developed at Scottish Rite Hospital. Dr. Podeszwa participated in a press conference on state television.

On the morning of Tuesday, July 26, Dr. Gubin will talk about the Ilizarov center in the 21st century in the Scottish Rite Hospital auditorium. Also on the program are presentations by Dr. Birch on the evolution of the Ilizarov technique at the hospital, and Dr. Podeszwa on the development of collaborations between the Ilizarov center and Scottish Rite Hospital.