Therapies help pachygyria sufferers

July 19, 2011

Pachygyria is a neuronal migration disorder that results in too few gyri, or folds in the brain, according to Seattle Children’s pediatric neurologist Alexander Paciorkowski.

Isolated pachygyria means that only one part of the brain is affected; extensive pachygyria signifies that most of the brain is absent of gyri. The condition is closely related to lissencephaly, a term used to describe the condition of a brain that is completely smooth.

Pachygyria is classified as a rare condition. Neurologists and geneticists consider rare conditions to arise in less than 1 in 2,000 people. Though in most cases it is genetic, sometimes pachygyria can be caused by infection early in a pregnancy.

During fetal development, neurons must migrate from their place of origin deep inside the brain to their proper neural circuits near the brain’s surface. Neuronal migration, which can occur as early as the second month of gestation, is controlled by chemical signals. Neurons that settle outside of their designated locations cause the brain to develop structural abnormalities.

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Engagement: Lambert, Speight

July 19, 2011

Daryl Lambert and Amy Speight

Daryl Lambert and King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert, of Redmond, announce the engagement of their son, Craig Lambert, to Amy Speight, of Mukilteo.

Speight, the daughter of Shannon and Rachel Speight, of Freeland, is a graduate of the Intercollegiate College of Nursing and works as a pediatric oncology nurse at Seattle Children’s.

Craig Lambert is a graduate of Redmond High School and a 2004 graduate of Washington State University. He is a Kappa Sigma alumnus with a degree in construction management. He works for The Boeing Co. in Everett.

The couple plans to wed in March 2012 and make their home in Mukilteo.

Swedish emergency room services to relocate July 14

July 12, 2011

Swedish Medical Center administrators and physicians plan to transfer emergency room services from the standalone facility near Lake Sammamish to Swedish/Issaquah early July 14.

The relocation is poised to unfold in a careful choreography as the initial phase of the hospital opens to patients. Dispatchers plan to direct ambulances to the hospital ER in the Issaquah Highlands starting at midnight.

“We’re doing this transition in the middle of the night because that is our lull point. Typically, the lowest census in any emergency department is that kind of 3-4 a.m. range,” said Dr. John Milne, a Swedish emergency physician and Issaquah resident. “Most sane people are asleep.”

The portion of the hospital for inpatients does not come online until November.

Jeff Griffin, Eastside Fire & Rescue deputy chief of operations, said agency administrators continue to update ambulance crews about the change. EFR emergency crews also toured the Swedish/Issaquah ER to prepare for the transition.

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Childbirth center offers ‘welcoming, homelike atmosphere’

July 5, 2011

Little fingers and little toes will soon be a common sight at Swedish/Issaquah hospital.

The new childbirth center will have eight labor, delivery and recovery rooms, each with its own Jacuzzi and foldout couch for napping partners.

Two operating rooms are available in the labor, delivery and recovery section in case the mother needs a Caesarean section.

Once a baby is born, the mother and infant will be taken across the window-filled hallway to the postpartum unit, where she and her partner will learn about baby behavior, such as feeding cues, and have the opportunity to ask nurses questions about the newest member of the family.

Having a childbirth center is integral to any hospital, according to Penny Simkin, physical therapist, doula, Seattle childbirth educator and author.

“I think that from a business point of view it makes a lot of sense for a hospital to have a birthing center,” Simkin said. “It’s the first association that healthy young people have with a hospital when they’re giving birth, and if it’s a positive experience they’ll go back there in other realms.”

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Buy (nearly) all you need at Goodwill for a year

May 31, 2011

Beautiful Existence, with her son Epic, is trying to buy almost everything she uses from Goodwill for a year. Contributed

A local resident has taken up a unique challenge this year: to shop only at Goodwill for everything she needs — except for things like food, hygiene items and prescriptions.

Beautiful Existence is what she calls herself, a representation of her life and dedication to humanity design, according to her blog. Her motivation for the challenge came from a childhood of shopping at thrift stores and learning to live in an environmentally friendly way. She grew up on a farm in Olympia, where she says her parents taught her the importance of conservation and living frugally.

“I was actually in a thrift store with my mom last year and I thought, ‘OK, all these people do all these challenges. I wonder if I could buy from a thrift store all year?’” she said.

She started her blog and garnered some unexpected media attention, boosting her followers from 75 to 200-plus followers a day, most of whom leave comments on the site thanking her for the inspiration.

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Gold Star

April 19, 2011

Students raise funds for Seattle Children’s

Kim Bussing and Kaileen Dougherty

For the past three years, two Issaquah High School juniors, Kim Bussing and Kaileen Dougherty, have raised funds for Seattle Children’s, collecting about $3,000.

The duo raised money this year by selling concessions at Destination Imagination, an annual education event where children competed in science, drama and other creative contests March 5 at Pacific Cascade Middle School.

This year, the girls raised more than $1,000.

“Both Kaileen and I are very passionate about supporting our community, and both of us had health scares after we were born,” Bussing said. “We want to be able to give back to Seattle Children’s and also be able to help give other children the chances we’ve been able to have.”

Families organize Issaquah run to help boy battling rare disease

April 14, 2011

NEW — 1 p.m. April 14, 2011

Calvin Bertsch

Families in the neighborhoods along the southern shore of Lake Sammamish plan to gather Sunday for the Calvin Bertsch Rainbow Fun Run, to honor the life of a 3-year-old boy bravely battling mitochondrial disease.

The 1.67-mile family run starts at 3 p.m. at Meerwood Park, 4703 192nd Ave. S.E., rain or shine. Organizers recommend donations of $10 per person or $25 per family in order to offset the family’s mounting medical bills.

Participants can preregister, donate at the run or mail tax-deductible donations to IMPACT, c/o Matt Wimmer, 4708 193rd Place S.E., Issaquah, WA 98027. IMPACT is a nonprofit organization.

Calvin arrived Nov. 19, 2007 — almost seven weeks earlier than the expected due date.

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Gold Star

April 5, 2011

Key Club goes extra mile

For her 17th birthday, Issaquah High School Key Club President Kaileen Dougherty celebrated by helping others.

She and more than 100 Key Club members made Valentine’s Day cards for Seattle Children’s and made two banners that read “IHS Key Club Loves You!” that she and student Aaron Tham delivered to Aegis Living and Regency Newcastle.

Key Club members who helped with the project received a piece of homemade birthday cake. Seattle Children’s staff had nothing but positive anecdotes about children in hospital beds thrilled to know that some “high school kid” was thinking about them, Dougherty said.

Gold Star

March 15, 2011

Students collect 7,500 crayons

Cougar Ridge Elementary School students

The students at Cougar Ridge Elementary School have collected 7,500 crayons for the patients at Seattle Children’s.

By working with parent advisers Kavita Hegde and Jennifer Goldberg, students used goal-setting strategies, marking skills and leadership talents to put together the crayon drive. Their business acumen paid off, with the students collecting the 7,500 crayons in less than a month, from Jan. 19 to Feb. 28.

Children’s uses more than 100,000 crayons each year. Efforts like those made by the Cougar Ridge Student Council help the hospital offset the cost of purchasing crayons and allow those funds to be used for more immediate needs, such as uncompensated care.

Raise the Dough for Seattle Children’s

March 8, 2011

Diners looking for a savory or sweet treat can get both and help sick children at the Hope on the Hill guild’s second annual fundraiser in the Issaquah Highlands on March 22.

Mark Mullet’s two franchises — Zeeks Pizza and Ben & Jerry’s — will donate 20 percent of the day’s sales, including take out and delivery, to uncompensated care at Seattle Children’s.

Last year, before Mullet opened Ben & Jerry’s, the fundraiser raised $1,200 for the hospital at Zeeks. This year, the guild has a goal of raising at least $1,500, Hope on the Hill event chair Amy Trenary said.

In 2010, the hospital provided more than $100 million in uncompensated care to families in need.

“We want all kids to be able to have access to the best health care possible, regardless of their family’s ability to pay,” Trenary said.

The guild started in 2009 and has collected money and toys for Seattle Children’s through a variety of ways, including the Tea for Hope auction.

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