April 25 - May 1, 2012 Putnam Voice
Kiwanis Health Fair promises to be bigger and better
By NANCY KLINE
OTTAWA — This is the 25th year theOttawa Kiwanis have hosted their annualhealth fair and it promises to be bigger andbetter than ever. The event is this Saturday, April 28, from 6 to 10 a.m. at the Ottawa-Glandorf High School gymnasium.In addition to numerous blood testsavailable, the health fair will feature morethan 50 health care vendors with tonsof free information on a wide variety of health specialties ranging from audiologyto skin cancer, mental health, cancer, fit-ness rehab and many more. Some healthtesting will be available on site, as well asa huge amount of reference material.The main blood check costs $35 andincludes 39 tests performed, includingcholesterol, triglyceride, protein, whiteand red blood counts and much more. Additional tests also are available. ThePSA test for men is $40. An A1c bloodsugar test is $15 and a TSH thyroid test isan additional $25. This year a magnesiumtest is also available for $20.“The average time from walking in thedoor to being done with your blood tests isno more than 15 minutes,” said Jim Hering-haus, who co-chairs the annual event withTom Gustwiller. “We’re proud of that fact.”He said Medi-Lab brings at least 30 phlebotomists to take blood. “We’ve beendoing this for so many years and have somany volunteers it goes like clock-work.”In addition to providing health care at areasonable costs for the area, the Kiwanisalso receive a portion of the fees you payfor the blood tests to providing funding fornumerous community projects throughoutthe year.Ottawa Kiwanis is a service organizationthat supports the Ottawa Boy Scouts plus provides funds for the Putnam CountyYMCA youth programs, O-G MarchingBand, Challenge Champions, Girls Scouts,Imagination Library and numerous otherevents and clubs.For these tests to be accurate, 12-hourfasting is required meaning no food ordrink other than water.The blood testing began as a conver-sation between Paul Shin, then ownerof Medi-Lab and Tom Gustwiller, ownerof Gustwiller’s Men’s, Boys and Women’sWear clothing store.Shin had an idea. He suggested offering acommunity blood draw and have Kiwanismember assist with registration and otherdetails. The idea grew into a plan, and 25 years ago, the Kiwanis hosted their firstblood check. Around 170 came to thisevent. The numbers of those attendingcontinued to grow until 2006 when thenumber jumped to 800. In 2011, nearly1500 area residents attended the event tohave their blood checking.Initially only a few health-care boothswere set up at the event. Then seven yearsago, the Kiwanis worked with the PutnamCounty Health Department as they wantedto host a health fair in conjunction with theblood check. Since then the Kiwanis havealso taken over coordinating the healthfair during the blood check. Visitors to the health fair may obtain abone density test to check for osteoporo-sis and derma scan to check for skin dam-age. They can also obtain a video screen-ing to see the inside of their ears or havetheir blood pressure check.Nursing home and assisted-living facili-ties will have displays and individuals pres-ent to answer questions. Also numeroushospital and other health care centers willbe present with displays about their ser- vices. Others areas of health care includingmental health, foot health, supplements,and physical activity health.
Breakfast is served
A highlight of the event is the breakfastcoordinated by Rose Riepenhoff, owner of Rose Haven Bed and Breakfast. Featuringegg casserole, sausage, sausage gravy andbiscuits, fresh fruit and beverages, the break-fast has grown increasingly popular since itwas added to the health fair seven years ago.
Drug drop-off offered at site
On the morning of April 28, PutnamCounty will also host its fourth medicationtake back/drop off event at the OttawaKiwanis Health Fair from 6 to 10 a.m.Sheriff Beutler, deputies and other lawenforcement officers will be on hand tocollect any potentially dangerous expired,unused and unwanted prescription, overthe counter and veterinary medications.Only medications in powder or pill formwill be accepted.
A1c tests help screen for diabetes
The A1c test and eAG calculation areused to monitor the glucose control of diabetics over time. The goal of thosewith diabetes is to keep their bloodglucose levels as close to normal as pos-sible. This helps to minimize the compli-cations caused by chronically elevatedglucose levels, such as progressive dam-age to body organs like the kidneys, eyes,cardiovascular system, and nerves. The A1c test and eAG result give a pictureof the average amount of glucose in theblood over the last few months. Theycan help you and your doctor know if the measures you are taking to control your diabetes are successful or need tobe adjusted. A1c is frequently used to help newlydiagnosed diabetics determine how ele- vated their uncontrolled blood glucoselevels have been. It may be orderedseveral times while control is beingachieved, and then several times a yearto verify that good control is being main-tained.The A1c test may be used to screenfor and diagnose diabetes. However, A1c should not be used for diagnosis in pregnant women, people who have hadrecent severe bleeding or blood transfu-sions, those with chronic kidney or liverdisease, and people with blood disorderssuch as iron-deficiency anemia, vitaminB12 anemia, and hemoglobin variants. Also, only A1c tests that have been refer-enced to an accepted laboratory method(standardized) should be used for diag-nostic or screening purposes. In thesecases, a fasting plasma glucose or oralglucose tolerance test may be used forscreening or diagnosis. Currently, point-of-care tests, such as those that may beused at a doctor’s office or a patient’sbedside, are too variable for use in diag-nosis but can be used to monitor treat-ment (lifestyle and drug therapies).
• Submitted photo
Medi-Lab provides30 phlebotomists todraw blood during theKiwanis Health Fair toensure there is onlya short wait for yourtesting.
PSA testing offered at health fair
How is it used?
If prostate cancer is diagnosed, the totalPSA test may be used as a monitoringtool to help determine the effectivenessof treatment. It may also be ordered atregular intervals after treatment to detectrecurrence of the cancer.The total PSA test and digital rectal exammay be used to screen both asymptomaticand symptomatic men for prostate cancer.If either the PSA or the DRE are found tobe abnormal, then the doctor may chooseto follow this testing with a prostate biopsyand perhaps imaging tests, such as an ultra-sound. If the DRE is normal but the PSA ismoderately elevated, the doctor may ordera free PSA test to look at the ratio of freeto total PSA. This can help to distinguishbetween prostate cancer and other non-cancer causes of elevated PSA. Since thetotal PSA test can be elevated temporarilyfor a variety of reasons, a doctor may orderanother PSA a few weeks after the first todetermine if the PSA is still elevated.Currently there is no consensus aboutusing the PSA test to screen for prostatecancer in asymptomatic men. While pros-tate cancer is a relatively common type of cancer in men, it is an uncommon cause of death. In cases where the cancer appearsto be slow-growing, the doctor and patientmay decide to monitor its progress ratherthan pursue immediate treatment (called“watchful waiting”). Total PSA levels maybe ordered at frequent intervals to monitorthe change in PSA over time.The complexed PSA is a relatively newtest that may be ordered, along with theDRE, as an alternative to the total PSA.There is hope that this test could be morespecific than the total PSA — better atdetecting cancer-related PSA, but findingshave been mixed and its ultimate clinicalutility has yet to be established. The cPSAis an option that doctors can discuss withtheir patients. Its use may expand and/orbe better defined as additional studies areconducted and findings are reported.