Roanoke, Va.

July 31, 2018

LewisGale Medical Center’s newest technology is decreasing diagnosis times from days to minutes.

The new VITEK mass spectrometry unit can recognize bacteria in 60 seconds using smaller samples. The previous unit would take multiple hours and required larger bacteria samples, which takes more time to grow.

“It is not a wait-and-watch game anymore,” said Dr. Kashyap Patel, a hospitalist at LewisGale Medical Center in Salem.

With quicker diagnoses, patients are less likely to be prescribed multiple antibiotics and will spend less time on them. Side effects and...

July 3, 2018

Nine months after local residents purchased a mountain bike course, the Roanoke City Council has approved its installation in  Wasena Park.

The course, called a pump track, was exhibited by Progressive Bike Ramps the last two years at the Anthem Go Outside Festival and was a huge hit. Kristine McCormick, president of the Roanoke Chapter of the International Mountain Biking Association, said it was one of the most popular attractions.

"I have never even ridden on it, the line is always too long," she said.

The track, which features a series of bumps and banked turns to simulate riding on a mountain trail, is mobile and can be relocated if needed. It was purchased in October immediately after GO Fest ended, thanks to...

July 9, 2018

Carilion Clinic recently started training medical providers how to spot potential ubstance abuse early on.

Most patients will not notice a significant difference from the usualy questions they're asked when they come to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital. But if the initial screening raises alarms, it will lead to further questioning, and maybe a referral to treatment.

Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment, a series of strategies referred to as SBIRT by health care providers, is used for early identification and intervention of substance use disorder, said Cheryl Hartman, the grants project director at Carilion.

A 2016 survey by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, or SSAMHSA, found that 20.1 million p eople age 12 or older in the U.S. had a substance use disorder. Of those, 75 percent struggled with...

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