Safely Celebrate Memorial Day

Posted on : 05-27-2011 | By : tsimons | In : Health Tips, News

As the end of May draws closer, everyone anxiously awaits the arrival of the Memorial Day holiday to enjoy a three-day weekend relaxing with family and friends barbequing ala beachside to kick-off the start of the summer season. But holidays can pose a safety risk to many. The most dangerous holidays in terms of injuries is the five-day period surrounding Labor Day, followed by Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, and Halloween.

Silver Cross Hospital encourages families to follow these tips to start the summer off safely.

Hitting the Road

With millions of people starting the summer season by taking a road trip, the AAA recommends these travel tips:

  • Buckle up. “Buckle up and make sure that children are properly secured in child safety seats,” says Dr. Daniel Checco, D.O., Medical Director for the Silver Cross Free-Standing Emergency Care Center in Homer Glen. “These easy steps greatly increase your odds of surviving and reducing injuries if a crash occurs.”
  • Never leave your child alone in the car. Cars can get up to baking hot temperatures in just a few minutes in warm weather — even with the window open a crack. Children should never be left alone in a car, even for a few minutes.
  • Get a good night’s sleep. Drowsy drivers can be as dangerous as drunk drivers, so be sure to get a good night’s sleep before you take a long road trip.
    Don’t drink and drive. Never drive while impaired. 
  • Do a pre-road trip checkup. To avoid any possible breakdowns during your trip, ensure that your car’s tires are properly inflated, fluids are topped off, and everything under the hood looks all right.

 Water Safety

  • Lifeguards are a must. If you’re going to be around lakes or pools with your kids, make sure there is a lifeguard around.
    Drowning.  Surround swimming pools with a fence at least five feet high.  Do not let children play around any water—unless an adult is present.
  • Rip Currents: No. 1 Beach Danger. Rip currents are responsible for eight out of 10 beach drownings and are common on many U.S. beaches — even in shallow water. Rip currents occur on a windy day as surf pushes water inside the sandbar, and once pressure builds up there is a collapse of the sandbar. Unfortunately the currents get incredibly strong and swimmers have a difficult time swimming out of the current. The best advice is to swim parallel to the shore and in a short while if you are not outside the current, try swimming parallel to the shore in the other direction and this should get you out of the current and safely back to shore.
  • Tune-up your boat. Have a professional check your boat to ensure it’s working properly, and make sure your safety equipment is in good shape — that the life preservers are fully functional and you have enough of them.
  • Use lifejackets when boating. The American Boating Association encourages you to make sure you have a life vest that is appropriate for your child’s age and adult’s age.
    Don’t Drink and Boat. Like driving a car, boating should not involve alcohol.

Outdoor Safety for Adults and Kids

  • Insect Bites.  Insect repellents used on children should contain no more than 10 percent of a chemical called DEET.  Watch for allergic reactions or infections. 
  • Sports Safety.  Wear appropriate safety gear when engaging in sports. Helmets are important to avoid simple concussions which can have long-term sequels.
  • Burns.  Keep babies younger than six months old out of direct sunlight.  For all other children, use a sunscreen made for kids, with a SPF of at least 15 although SPF 50 is preferred.  Sunscreen must be reapplied every hour, even if it says it is waterproof.  Make sure to wear hats and sunglasses. Screen grills so children can’t touch them.
  • Fireworks. Attend firework displays rather than purchasing fireworks for home use. “It’s really a lot safer to go to a professional show at one of the many area park districts,” says Dr. Checco. “By letting trained experts light the fireworks, all you have to do is sit there and enjoy the show.”

If you or a family membe needs medical attention this summer, Dr. Daniel Checco and the rest of Silver Cross Hospital’s board certified emergency medicine physicians and nurses are ready to assist you and your family at The Silver Cross Free-Standing Emergency Care Center located at 143rd St. and Bell Rd in Homer Glen. The Center is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can even check wait times (if any) online!

SPECIAL OFFFER: $100 Mammograms

Posted on : 05-26-2011 | By : tsimons | In : Uncategorized

Time for your annual mammogram?  You are in luck! The Silver Cross Center for Women’s Health in New Lenox is digital mammogramphy screenings for just $100 including the radiologist interpretation.  Cash, check and credit cards will be accepted at time of appointment—insurance will not be billed. Please mention SPECIAL MAMMOGRAM when calling (815) 740-7076 before June 30 to schedule an appointment with a doctor’s order. Don’t have a doctor? Click here or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325) for a free referral.

An estimated 211,240 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S. this year, making it the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women.

“Mammography may not be perfect, but we do know that yearly screening mammography significantly reduces the risk of dying of breast cancer,” says Dr. Aaron Guajardo, radiologist at the Silver Cross Center for Women’s Health. His job is to find early breast cancer that can be cured.

“It’s important that women know their family history, talk to their doctor, and together decide on the best course of screening based on their individual needs,” says Dr. Guajardo.

What is digital mammography?
Digital mammography takes an electronic image of the breast and stores it directly in a computer. Digital mammograms are better at detecting breast cancer in women with dense breasts, or who are pre-or peri-menopausal. It provides physicians with a more accurate picture of the breast, allowing for quick and simple diagnosis.

The Silver Cross Center for Women’s Health crown jewel is full field digital mammography—the latest breast cancer testing available. “At the Silver Cross Center for Women’s Health, we use only digital mammography technology to provide our patients with the best service and care,” says Marci Vasiliades, Manager of the Center. “We are even able to scan patients’ prior mammogram films into our system which converts the images to a digital format for easy comparison.”

Digital mammograms also simplify the procedure for women. Although compression of the breasts is still important when performing digital mammography, the compression paddles are warmer and more flexible, which ultimately provide women with a more comfortable experience. Following the screening, women can call a 24-hour mammogram hotline to obtain their test results alleviating any anxiety.  And, patients receive an I Matter card, which can be used for valuable discounts from over 150 local businesses just for getting their regular health screenings.

In addition, the Silver Cross Center for Women’s Health is uniquely staffed with a Certified Breast Care Nurse (CBCN™) as there are only 339 CBCN™ certified nurses throughout the country.

“By having a Certified Breast Care Nurse working at the Center, we are able to offer our patients even more specialized and personalized care,” said Vasiliades. “This specialized nurse guides our patients through the next steps in their care.”

Video:   Kerry Sayers of 670 The SCORE Stops by for a Mammogram

Joliet Woman Regains New Freedom after Incontinence Treatment

Posted on : 05-24-2011 | By : tsimons | In : Events, Incontinence, News

Have you ever not quite made it to the bathroom in time? If so, you’re not alone. Urinary incontinence affects millions of women in the U.S.  Like many other women nationwide, Joliet resident Anita Matichak, discovered that her urinary incontinence was worsening over the last couple of years. Fortunately, she was able to find simple solutions that greatly improved this problem enabling her to regain her sense of freedom.

As a registered nurse for 21 years, and hearing that female urinary problems at any age are not the norm, she decided to seek treatment in order to improve her quality of life and prevent the condition from getting worse.

To seek treatment, Anita made an appointment with Dr. Sandra Culbertson, an urogynecologist at Silver Cross Hospital and the University of Chicago Medical Center. Dr. Culbertson designed a treatment plan for Anita that included external estrogen replacement, education on nutrition factors that affect an incontinence condition, and 4 weeks of physical therapy at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross Hospital.

“After a mere 4 weeks of physical therapy and following the rest of my treatment plan, I was amazed at how I had more control over my bladder, and it no longer controlled me,” Anita said. “Dr. Culbertson was very friendly and informative. She took her time explaining how my lifestyle choices could be affecting my incontinence issues.”

“Usually patients don’t realize that drinking caffeinated and carbonated drinks, as well as lack of exercise to keep the pelvic floor strong can greatly affect an incontinence problem,” said Dr. Culbertson. “By making a few adjustments many women can reverse their incontinence condition and regain control of their bladders through a less evasive treatment plan.”

In addition, Anita also gained a new sense of freedom through the critical exercises she learned from Valerie Paluszak, Senior Outpatient Physical Therapist specializing in Women’s Health from the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago at Silver Cross Hospital. “Valerie was wonderful. She treated me with dignity and provided me with educational materials about exercises that I was able to do at home to improve my bladder control,” said Anita.

“Anita, like many other women, are unaware how doing simple exercises can greatly improve their bladder health and allow them to live more independently,” said Valerie Paluszak.

Join Dr. Sandra Culbertson, urogynecologist, for a program titled “Urinary Incontinence: It’s Not “Normal” at Any Age!” on Thursday, June 9 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Silver Cross Center for Women’s Health in New Lenox. Participants will learn about the symptoms, diagnosis and treatment of urinary incontinence prolapse of the vagina, bladder and/or uterus and other disorders of the pelvic floor. For more information or to register, call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325) or click here.

Seeing Red? So Are We!

Posted on : 05-21-2011 | By : tsimons | In : Health Tips, Recipes

What an exciting time to be a Chicago Bulls fan. If you or your family are spending late nights watching the Bulls play in the Eastern Conference Playoffs against the Miami Heat, you are not alone. We’re sure all  the suspense is sure to leave you and your family hungry, so we came up with a few easy and  healthy snacks to munch on while you watch the game. These spicy snacks are also great for bbq’s, graduation parties, or everday additions to your dinner table.




 Beat the Heat Jalapeno Cheese Dip


  • 1 (4 ounce) can diced jalapeno peppers
  • 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chilies
  • 1 round loaf sourdough bread/or use an oven-safe dish


  1. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Combine jalapeno peppers, Parmesan cheese, Cheddar cheese, mayonnaise, and green chilies in a bowl. Cut the top off of the sourdough bread and hollow out the center to create a bowl. Fill the bread bowl with the jalapeno mixture. (or you can bake in a oven-save dish)
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes.
  4. Serve with bread, crackers, or chips.

Nutritional Information

Per Serving:  Calories: 438 | Total Fat: 28.1g | Cholesterol: 25mg

BULLS bring down the Heat Spicy Salsa


  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes, drained
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 habanero pepper, seeded and minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
  • 1 serrano pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced 
  • 1 small carrot
  • 2/3 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • ground black pepper, to taste


  1. Place the stewed tomatoes, garlic, minced habanero pepper, minced jalapeno pepper, minced serrano pepper, and half of the diced onion into a food processor. Process until the mixture has been pureed.
  2. Peel the carrot, then use the vegetable peeler to cut the carrot into thin shavings. Roughly chop the shaved carrot along with the cilantro leaves. Place the carrot, cilantro, diced canned tomatoes, chopped fresh tomato, green onions, lime juice, vinegar, salt, and black pepper into the food processor. Pulse until the salsa reaches your desired consistency.
  3. For best results, pour into jars and let sit in refrigerator for 2 to 3 days, but feel free to indulge immediately. Serve with tortilla chips or crackers.

Nutritional Information 

Per Serving:  Calories: 16 | Total Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 0mg

Construction Underway for New Cancer Center

Posted on : 05-20-2011 | By : tsimons | In : breast cancer, News, Replacement Hospital

University of Chicago Medical Center & Silver Cross Hospital Partnership Brings Leading Cancer Expertise to Will County

Construction began last week to build a $21.6 million outpatient cancer treatment center in New Lenox—on the Silver Cross Replacement Hospital campus. 

The Cancer Center is a partnership between University of Chicago Medical Center (UCMC) and Silver Cross Hospital and brings together University of Chicago specialists and their access to advanced and investigational therapies in a community hospital setting.

The 2-story outpatient facility received approval from the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board in October.  HSA, the same real estate developer that built the medical office building already open on the New Lenox campus, will lease the 20,000 sq ft. facility to UCMC and Silver Cross.  The University of Chicago Cancer Center at Silver Cross is expected to open in the spring of 2012. 
“Next year, patients will have the best of both worlds,” said Paul Pawlak, President and CEO of Silver Cross Hospital.  The Cancer Center will provide the patients and their families with convenient access to University of Chicago Medical Center’s specialists and advanced treatment in a brand new facility in Will County.  

Leading Cancer Expertise Close to Home
The University of Chicago Medical Center has consistently been ranked as one of the best cancer hospitals in U.S. News and World Report.  In addition, UCMC is one of only two hospitals in Illinois designated as a Comprehensive Cancer Center by the National Cancer Institute. The University of Chicago Medical Center, established in 1927, is one of the nation’s leading academic medical institutions. Care is provided by more than 700 attending physicians – most of whom are full-time University faculty members – 620 residents and fellows, more than 1,000 nurses and 9,000 employees. The Medical Center is consistently recognized as a leading provider of sophisticated medical care. University of Chicago physician-scientists performed the first organ transplant and the first bone marrow transplant in animal models, the first successful living-donor liver transplant, the first hormone therapy for cancer and the first successful application of cancer chemotherapy.

“The University of Chicago maintains the largest number of active clinical trials for the treatment of cancer in Illinois,” said Richard Schilsky, MD, professor of medicine and section chief of hematology/oncology at the University of Chicago Medical Center. “We expect to bring a wide range of these studies to Silver Cross, including many developed by the physician-scientists at the University.”

In addition to clinical trials, in the Cancer Center offers area patients access to UCMC medical oncologists and specialists, chemotherapy, infusion services, radiation therapy, cancer support groups, preventative screenings, and a comprehensive resource center.  The Center will have a new generation linear accelerator.  TruBeam™ uses image guided radiation therapy to provide the safest and most accurate results. 

Cancer Prevalent in Will County
The University of Chicago Cancer Center at Silver Cross Hospital is a strong positive response to the growing population and need for cancer services in Will County.  Each year, 70 percent of people diagnosed with cancer seek inpatient care outside of Will County.

“These people are searching for expertise, for access to new technologies, for life-saving possibilities from new clinical trials,” states Pawlak.  “They are traveling far to unfamiliar places searching for hope. Our solution is to bring this hope closer to home.”

Heartburn? Indigestion? Get Relief.

Posted on : 05-19-2011 | By : tsimons | In : Events, Health Tips, Video

Gastroesophageal reflux disease, also know as GERD, is a digestive disorder that affects the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) — the muscle connecting the esophagus with the stomach. More than 60 million American adults experience GERD and heartburn at least once a month, and about 25 million adults suffer daily from heartburn.  Dr. Kamran Ayub explains the cause of GERD here:

Want to learn more? Have any questions? Join us on Monday, May 23 at Silver Cross Hospital’s conference center to hear Dr. Kamran Ayub,  Gastroenterologist, speak about Healing Heartburn. Register [here] today.

Take Me Out To The Ball Game…

Posted on : 05-18-2011 | By : tsimons | In : Business Sponsors, Events, News

This year marks the 10th anniversary of Silver Cross Field and we are excited to continue the legacy of family, fun & baseball this season with the Joliet Slammers Baseball team!

The Joliet Slammers are pumped to start a new era of tradition in the Joliet community and have been busy preparing for Opening Day on May 19.

“We are thrilled to see the overwhelming support our community has shown us as we open the new team in Joliet,” Slammers Director of Marketing and Public Relations Sarah H. Eichenberger said.“We have a lot of players with interesting stories and backgrounds, and we are so excited to start this season.”

The Slammers begin play in their inaugural season on Thursday, May 19th, 2011 against the Washington Wild Things. For tickets, please call (815) 722-BATS (2287).

Skin Care Summer Fest

Posted on : 05-17-2011 | By : tsimons | In : I Matter Benefits

Ladies, the best accessory this summer is fresh skin. Get help putting your best face forward with Jeffrey LaMorte Salon and Day Spa.

The Jeffrey LaMorte Salon and Day Spa are throwing a skin care party with FREE flash exfoliations, Rehydrating Masques, Lip & Eye treatments! Gather up the girls and make it a party while sipping on complimentary mimosas and snacks! With 2 convenient locations in Frankfort & Orland Park, as well additional discounts for IMatter members, there is no reason not to attend.  

RSVP today. A 25$ deposit will be taken in order to hold your spot; however you will recieve $25 in Dermalogica products after your service the day of the event!!

Sunday, June 12  at 613 N. LaGrange Rd., Frankfort.

11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

RSVP at 815-469-0660

Monday, June 13 at 15194 S. LaGrange Rd., Orland Park.

4 p.m. – 7p.m.

RSVP at 708-364-0660

Loosen the Grip of Sinusitis

Posted on : 05-12-2011 | By : tsimons | In : Events, Health Tips

Acute sinusitis is a short-term, intense infection or inflammation of the membranes in your sinuses (the air-filled cavities in the bones around the eyes and behind the nose).  Millions of Americans develop this common condition at least once a year, according to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

“When you have a cold or allergies, the lining of your nose becomes inflamed and produces mucus. If the swelling spreads to your sinuses, the small openings that allow them to drain become narrower”, says Dr. Ankit Patel, ear, nose, and throat surgeon on staff at Silver Cross Hospital.   “This traps air and mucus in your sinuses, making it easier for viruses, bacteria or — rarely — fungi to grow.”

Try these at home remedies to help ease your symptoms and make you feel more comfortable:

  • Over-the-counter (OTC) decongestants can help relieve congestion in mucous membranes and restore sinus drainage. Taking an OTC medication that contains guaifenesin (Robitussin) along with plenty of water will help keep mucus thin, watery and flowing.
  • Decongestant nasal sprays may work, too. But, use these sprays for no more than three days, or your congestion could get worse. Be sure to read the packaging before trying any OTC medication to make sure you can take it safely.
  • Soothe your nasal passages by running a cool-mist vaporizer or using a saline nasal spray. Vaporizers should be cleaned daily or as instructed by the manufacturer.
  • Temporarily ease discomfort or pain with an OTC pain reliever, such as acetaminophen, aspirin or ibuprofen. But, don’t give aspirin to anyone younger than age 19. It’s linked to Reye’s syndrome, a rare but sometimes fatal condition.

If you are still struggling with controlling your symptoms, it may be time to meet with your physician. Learn more about the latest treatments and medications to help alleviate sinus symptoms and pain at a free lecture, Head Stuffy? It May Be Sinusitis hosted by Dr. Ankit Patel on May 25 at Silver Cross Hospital. Click here to register.

We’re Celebrating Hospital Week!

Posted on : 05-08-2011 | By : tsimons | In : Uncategorized