Tag Archives: DeKalb

KAREEM ABDUL-JABBAR V.S. LEUKEMIA

 

Born Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, Jr. in New York on April 16, 1947, this 12 lb. 11 oz. baby grew up to be a 7 ft. 2 in. professional basketball player.  He began his record-breaking basketball accomplishments in high school when he led Jack Donahue’s Power Memorial Academy to three straight New York City Catholic championships, a 71-game winning streak, and a 79-2 overall record.

During his college years at UCLA, he played on the freshman team in 1966 and on the varsity team from 1967 to 1969.  According to Wikipedia, “He was the main contributor to the team’s three-year record of 88 wins and only two losses:  one to the University of Houston in which Alcindor had an eye injury, and the other to crosstown rival USC who played a “stall game.”  In his first game Alcindor scored 56 points, which set a UCLA single-game record.”

During the summer of 1968, Alcindor converted to Sunni Islam.  However, he did not begin publicly using his Arabic name, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, until 1971.

In 1969, Alcindor began his professional career with the Milwaukee Bucks.  He was an instant star, ranking second in the league in scoring (28.8 ppg) and third in rebounding (14.5 rpg).  He was named NBA Rookie of the Year.  The following year, he was named NBA Most Valuable Player.  Throughout his career, he was well known for his “skyhook,” a hook shot in which he bent his entire body like a straw, raised the ball, and released it at the highest point of his arm’s arching motion.

On June 28, 1989, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar announced that he would retire at the end of the season after twenty years in the NBA.

In November of 2009, he announced that he was suffering from a form of leukemia, Philadelphia chromosome-positive chronic myeloid leukemia, a cancer of the blood and bone marrow.  Abdul-Jabbar said that his condition could be managed by taking oral medication daily, seeing his specialist every other month, and having his blood analyzed regularly.

In February of 2011, Abdul-Jabbar announced via Twitter that his leukemia was gone and he was “100% cancer free.”  A few days later, he clarified his misstatement.  “You’re never really cancer-free and I should have known that.” Abdul-Jabbar said.  “My cancer right now is at an absolute minimum.”

If you have a family member who suffers from leukemia and needs private duty nursing, call American Home Health at (630) 236-3501.  The agency can provide round-the-clock nursing care by Registered Nurses (RNs), Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), and Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs).  Our service area covers fifteen counties in Northern Illinois including , and Kankakee.  American Home Health is licensed by the State of Illinois and accredited by the Joint Commission.  For further information, go to www.ahhc-1.com, or call (630) 236-3501.

By Karen Centowski

 

EISENHOWER’S BATTLE WITH CROHN’S DISEASE

Born October 14, 1890 in Denison, Texas, Dwight David Eisenhower was raised in Kansas.  He graduated from West Point in 1915 and began his military career.

During World War II, he was a five-star general in the United States Army and served as supreme commander of the Allied Expeditionary Forces in Europe.  According to Wikipedia, he was responsible for planning and supervising the invasion of North Africa in Operation Torch in 1942-1943 and the successful invasion of France and Germany in 1944-1945 from the Western Front.

In 1953 at the age of sixty-two, Eisenhower was elected the 34th President of the United States.  On May 10, 1956, six months before being re-elected for a second term, he was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease.

What is Crohn’s disease?  According to the Mayo Clinic article “Crohn’s Disease—Symptoms and Causes” at https://www.mayoclinic.orgdiseases-conditions/crohns-disease. It is an inflammatory bowel disease which causes inflammation of the digestive tract.  It can lead to abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss, and malnutrition.  Symptoms can range from mild to severe.

The exact cause of Crohn’s disease is unknown.  According to the Mayo Clinic article, risk factors for Crohn’s disease may include the following:

  • Age.  Crohn’s disease can occur at any age, but most people are diagnosed before they are thirty years old.
  • Ethnicity. Crohn’s disease can affect any ethnic group, but whites and people of Eastern European (Ashkenazi) Jewish descent have the highest risk.
  • Family history. If you have a close relative with the disease, such as a parent, sibling, or child, you are at higher risk to develop the disease.
  • Cigarette smoking. Cigarette smoking is the most important controllable risk factor for developing Crohn’s disease.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications. These include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, and others), naproxen sodium (Aleve), diclofenac sodium (Voltaren) and others.

Eisenhower served two terms in office from January 20, 1953 to January 20, 1961.  He died March 28, 1969.

If you have a family member who has a serious illness and needs private duty nursing, call American Home Health at (630) 236-3501.  The agency can provide round-the-clock nursing care by Registered Nurses (RNs), Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), and Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs).  Our service area covers fifteen counties in Northern Illinois including Cook, Lake, McHenry, Boone, Winnebago, Ogle, Lee, DeKalb, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, LaSalle, Grundy, Will, and Kankakee.  American Home Health is licensed by the State of Illinois and accredited by the Joint Commission.  For further information, go to www.ahhc-1.com, or call (630) 236-3501.

A FORMIDABLE FOE: LEWY BODY DEMENTIA

Born at St. Luke’s Hospital in Chicago on July 21, 1951, Robin Williams was the son of Robert Fitzgerald Williams, a senior executive in Ford Motor Company’s Lincoln-Mercury Division. His mother, Laurie McLaurin, was a former model from Jackson, Mississippi. During a television interview on Inside the Actors Studio in 2001, Williams credited his mother as an important early influence on his humor. He said he tried to make her laugh to gain attention.

Williams attended public elementary school at Gorton Elementary School in Lake Forest and middle school at Deer Path Junior High School. When he was twelve, his father was transferred to Detroit. When he was sixteen, his father took early retirement and the family moved to California.

He began performing stand-up comedy in San Francisco and Los Angeles in the 1970’s. He also starred in numerous films including Good Morning, Vietnam (1987) and the box office hit Mrs. Doubtfire (1993).

On August 11, 2014, the world learned that Williams had committed suicide by hanging himself in his California home. He was sixty-three years old. The autopsy report showed no alcohol or illegal drugs were involved. Prescription drugs in his system were at “therapeutic” levels. The final autopsy report noted that Williams had been suffering “a recent increase in paranoia.” An examination of his brain tissue suggested Williams suffered from “diffuse Lewy body dementia.”

According to a Mayo Clinic article “Lewy body dementia” at https://www.mayoclinic.org., “Lewy body dementia, also known as dementia with Lewy bodies, is the second most common type of progressive dementia after Alzheimer’s disease dementia. Protein deposits, called Lewy bodies, develop in nerve cells in the brain regions involved in thinking, memory and movement (motor control).

“Lewy body dementia causes a progressive decline in mental abilities. People with Lewy body dementia may experience visual hallucinations, and change in alertness and attention. Other effects include Parkinson’s disease-like symptoms such as rigid muscles, slow movement and tremors.”

If you have a family member who suffers from Lewy body dementia and needs private duty nursing, call American Home Health at (630) 236-3501. The agency can provide round-the-clock nursing care by Registered Nurses (RNs), Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), and Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs), Our service area covers fifteen counties in Northern Illinois including Cook, Lake, McHenry, Boone, Winnebago, Ogle, Lee, DeKalb, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, LaSalle, Grundy, Will, and Kankakee. American Home Health is licensed by the State of Illinois and accredited by the Joint Commission. For further information, go to www.ahhc-1.com, or call (630) 236-3501.

—By Karen Centowski

KNEE REPLACEMENT SURGERY

Looking down the long hall from her office to the conference room, Elaine must have thought about the number of steps required to get there. Fifty? A hundred? Five hundred? A thousand? Even using the cane only helped a little. At least there were no stairs to climb.

And then there were the problems at home. How much longer would she be able to take her dog, Patrick, for a walk past the school playground where the children were playing hopscotch? Who would pull the weeds out of the flower garden in the front yard? How much longer could she make the beds or wash the dishes? So much of life depends on the ability to stand and walk.

Elaine’s primary care doctor referred her to an orthopedic surgeon. He recommended knee replacement surgery. He explained that nearly one million Americans undergo hip or knee replacement surgeries each year. He said the majority of these procedures were performed on patients over the age of 65. According to https://www.webmd.com/osteoarthritis/guide/knee, “Osteoarthritis is the main reason why people go for knee replacement surgery. The age-related condition is very common and occurs when cartilage—the cushion between the knee and bone joints—breaks down.” Elaine fit into those demographics.

The doctor explained that patients having knee replacements are normally discharged from the hospital three days after surgery. Elaine would need to be able to use a walker before she could be discharged. Then someone would need to be with her at home 24/7 during her recovery.

The doctor told Elaine that the initial short-term recovery stage lasts four to six weeks for most patients. Nurses would need to be with her to tend to her medical needs. Therapists would come to her home to provide physical therapy. The final phase, long-term recovery, could take as long as six months.

Patients need the encouragement of family and friends throughout the whole process of knee replacement surgery. It would be easy to feel alone and to get discouraged. If someone you know is having knee replacement surgery, send a card. Call your friend or family member. Make a gift basket and deliver it. Do something to let them know you care.

If you have a friend or family member who is having knee replacement surgery and needs private duty nursing, call American Home Health at (630) 236-3501. The agency can provide round-the-clock nursing care by Registered Nurses (RNs), Licensed Practical Nurses (RNs), and Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs). Our service area covers fifteen counties in Northern Illinois including Cook, Lake, McHenry, Boone, Winnebago, Ogle, Lee, DeKalb, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, LaSalle, Grundy, Will, and Kankakee. American Home Health is licensed by the State of Illinois and accredited by the Joint Commission. For further information, go to our Web site, www.ahhc-1.com, or call (630) 236-3501.

—By Karen Centowski