Tuesday, November 03, 2015

New Dimension In Open MRI and Patient Comfort

www.jch.orgJCH Imaging Center Installs Siemens 1.5T MAGNETOM Espree with Tim™

The world’s first Open Bore MRI

Jerseyville, IL  November 2, 2015 ― JCH Imaging Center, has installed the region’s first Open Bore, 1.5 Tesla, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) system that combines a larger bore, or opening, for obese and claustrophobic patients with the ability to capture high-field quality diagnostic images.

“This is going to increase our efficiency and patient convenience,” says Ron Ausley, Director of the JCH Imaging Center.  “The patient-friendly design of this magnet will make it easier for large patients and those with claustrophobia to have a MRI examination which produces higher quality images. This will potentially reduce the need to repeat and interrupt exams.”

Larry Reed, MD & Chief Radiologist at Jersey Community Hospital explains “that a MRI plays a major role in the diagnosis and treatment planning for cancer, diabetes, heart and vascular disorders, and many other diseases associated with obesity.  This open bore designed magnet will allow us to obtain high quality images on all patients, including obese patients.”

Since two-thirds of American adults are overweight, the health-care industry is challenged to accommodate these larger patients with imaging systems that were designed for people who weigh much less. Currently, patients too large to fit inside the bore of a high-field MRI magnet have image studies done in open MRI systems with low-field magnets. This limits the diagnostic usefulness of the images obtained. The field strength of a magnet is measured in units of Tesla – the higher the number, the higher the field strength. The higher the field strength, the better the quality of images produced.

Claustrophobic patients present another challenge for MRI systems. They can be sedated, adding to their inconvenience and the time it takes to schedule and perform an exam.

The Siemens Medical Solutions MAGNETOM Espree installed at JCH Imaging Center features a bore opening of nearly 2.3 feet in diameter and almost one foot of free space between a patient’s head and the magnet. The Espree also features
the shortest 1.5 Tesla magnet available. Approximately four feet long, the magnet allows more than 60 percent of exams to be completed with the patient’s head outside the bore, helping to ease claustrophobia.

The new system provides up to four times more signal-to-noise ratio over traditional open MR designs, which is desirable in imaging larger patients. In addition, the Espree can perform advanced clinical applications in less time, because it combines strong gradient performance with Siemens’ Total imaging matrix (Tim™) technology. Tim is the first whole body surface coil design that enables the highest resolution images in a shorter acquisition time. Tim coils are very light, making them both easy to position and tolerate when scanning larger patients, improving cooperation.

The MAGNETOM Espree provides best patient comfort and high-quality images and diagnostic confidence for all types of patients.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

JCH Medical Group Continues to Grow

The JCH Medical Group is pleased to announce the addition of
Drs. Donald Murray and Sonya Schleeper
The two physicians bring more than 30 years of experience to the medical group.

Pictured: Jon Wade-CEO, Dr. Donald Murray, Dr. Sonya Schleeper, John Giertz, VP of Physician Services

Dr. Murray is an internal medicine physician trained at St. John’s Mercy Medical Center in St. Louis.  He is board certified with more than 20 years’ experience practicing in the Jersey County area. 

Dr. Schleeper, a Jerseyville native, is board certified in family practice. She attended Southern Illinois University School of Medicine in Springfield, IL and has been practicing in Jerseyville for over 10 years.   The physicians will continue to accept new patients in the McDow Building located at 270 Maple Summit Road in Jerseyville.

The JCH Medical Group is the largest provider of primary care services in the area comprised of over 30 providers in 13 different locations in the Midwestern part of Illinois. To make an appointment with Dr. Murray or Dr. Schleeper, please contact the JCH Medical Group in the McDow Buildling at (618) 498.7108 or visit our website at www.jch.org. 

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Diabetes Prevention

'Prevention is worth a pound of cure’ is really true, especially when it comes to a chronic disease like diabetes or heart disease.  A few years ago if a person was told they had borderline diabetes (what we call pre-diabetes today), or if a woman had gestational diabetes, it was thought inevitable that he or she would eventually develop diabetes.   This is no longer the case.  Diabetes is often preventable if lifestyle changes are made when a person is first diagnosed with pre-diabetes, or better yet, before they’re diagnosed.  It takes hard work and a plan but it can be done. 

Nancy Townzen, RN, CDE @ JCH
There are risk factors for diabetes which a person cannot change, such as age, being of Native American, Hispanic, Asian or Black American ethnicity, and having parents or siblings with diabetes. There are, however, many risk factors over which a person does have some control; these include physical inactivity, nutrition, high blood pressure and cholesterol levels, use of alcohol and tobacco, and weight.  People with pre-diabetes or with risk factors for diabetes can delay or prevent Type 2 Diabetes through lifestyle changes.  This means reducing weight by 5-10% by making changes in their diet and increasing physical activity.  A weight loss of 10-20 pounds can make a difference.  Thirty minutes a day of moderate physical activity five days a week is the minimum exercise recommended.  This is very similar to advice given to people who already have diabetes and if it is taken seriously a person with diabetes can greatly reduce their risk for complications while a person with pre-diabetes can often return to normal blood sugar levels.

Testing for diabetes is recommended for adults starting at the age of 45 years; however, it should be done at a younger age in adults who are overweight and have one other risk factor. For children 10 years and older diabetes screening is recommended in overweight children who have two other risk factors. If a person’s blood glucose level is initially found to be in the normal range, it should be rechecked every three years.  If a person is found to have pre-diabetes his or her blood sugar level should be checked every year and more often if symptoms of diabetes occur.

If you would like more information about the Diabetes Program at Jersey Community Hospital, you can contact Nancy Townzen, Certified Diabetes Educator at 618.498.8402 Ext. 8290. 


Nancy Townzen, Registered Nurse, Certified Diabetes Educator,

is here to serve you in the Diabetes Program at Jersey Community Hospital.  The service she offers focuses on diabetes prevention and management of diabetes through education, nutrition and physical activity counseling.   She administers Diabetes Risk Tests, provides basic and advanced education sessions about diabetes and its complications, plus other chronic diseases such as heart disease, kidney disease, and hypertension.   Classes are offered as individual and group sessions and are interactive and informal.  The curriculum used is sensitive to an individual’s particular needs and meets the American Diabetes Association standards for diabetes care.  The program helps empower participants to take better care of themselves as well as interact more productively with their healthcare providers. 

Nancy was born and raised in Collinsville, Il.  She attended Southwestern Illinois College where she received her degree in nursing.  She has lived in Kentucky, Utah, and Nevada, only recently returning to Illinois.   She has a wide range of nursing experience including general medical, orthopedics, labor and delivery, surgery, cardiac care and diabetes education. This was obtained while working in settings from a small 25 bed hospital to larger 150 and 300 bed facilities  and then on to an outpatient health center where she served as the Diabetes Coordinator for the past eight years. 

Special interests include her husband, children and grand-children, her Christian faith and church activities.  She enjoys gardening, bird watching, hiking, and bike riding.  Her most recent bicycle adventure with her husband Jim was in the summer and fall of 2014 which took her from Anacortes, Washington, across country to Bar Harbor, Maine, a trip of 3513 miles and worth every pedal.