One of my most memorable moments in almost 13 years with Science Care was in 2020 when I was invited to meet with a U.S. Army Colonel and military surgeon who had spent many years training combat surgeons with Science Care donated tissues. Our team had assisted him numerous times with the coordination of tissue for training events. We chatted for maybe 30 minutes before he went into a medical seminar he was attending here in Phoenix. In the last 5 minutes of our chat he said he had something for me. What he said to me and gave me next will stick with me forever! He said in his 29 years of Army service and the many hands-on training courses he had supported, I was the one who stood out to him. He said he knew my passion matched his in honoring our donors and training our military medical personnel for combat. He pulled out a box, opened it, and pulled out a coin. He told me it was the coin he carried with him every day during a mission in Germany 8 years prior. He said it was that mission that initiated the plan for his involvement with hands-on training programs with the military. He then reached back into the box and pulled out a flag that was precisely folded. He handed it to me and told me that on missions to combat areas it is very common for soldiers to carry flags with them. He said on his last mission in the Army, which was also his last hands-on training with donated tissues, he carried this flag many times inside his Army jacket covering his heart. He said it symbolized hope, freedom, life, safety, and home. He then said no one impacted him more than me during his time training with donated tissues in the military and he wanted me to have the beginning and the end of his Army training journey. He proceeded to pull out a piece of paper and shared that he had all the soldiers from his last mission sign a certificate of appreciation to bring back to me.
I was so touched and humbled. I left teary-eyed, but when I walked out the front door of the lobby where I had met this amazing Colonel, I smiled because I knew every sleepless night, every long day, every challenge we had overcome…. It mattered and we do make a difference! It is a difference only we can make as a Program, as a Team, and as a Community. It wasn’t me that made that impression; it was our donors, their loved ones, our entire Science Care team, our military personnel, and our veterans! I am so proud and honored to carry out the gift of donation and help to link our donors with such impactful Programs.
I also have many family members who have served our country and was a military wife for many years! Here are a few fun pictures of my daughter who is now 22 years old when her dad was serving in the Air Force.
Almost 1 in 3 Science Care Donors has previously served in a branch of our military! For veterans, donating their bodies to science can be a final act of service to their country, their loved ones, and all future generations. It is an invaluable gift to protect and support those who currently serve. One of the most impactful ways our donors have supported our military is through the training of military surgical teams to care for service members injured in combat.
Training with donated tissue helps build the technical skills and teamwork needed to address the most common cause of preventable death on the battlefield: Bleeding. When it comes to saving lives in combat and beyond, every second counts. Body donation gives surgeons hands-on experience with human anatomy, particularly the vascular system.
The injuries seen in battle are unlike what doctors might see in civilian life. Widespread use of minimally invasive surgery also means doctors are now less familiar with the surgical skills required in combat settings. Donating to science is a chance to give doctors the practice they need without risking injury to a living patient. The more they practice, the more likely they are to make a difference to service members and their families.
At Science Care, we are proud to work with the U.S. military to give surgeons and surgical teams the quality training experiences and repetition they need to prepare for deployment. Both immediate and post-deployment feedback from surgical teams expresses how working with donated tissues during training helped them better care for battlefield patients.
On behalf of so many service members impacted by this training and their families, we salute and thank our donors for their final sacrifice.
For restaurants offering discounts this holiday season visit: https://www.military.com/veterans-day/restaurants-veterans-day-military-discounts.html
According to Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 34 millions Americans suffer from diabetes. That is roughly 1 in 10 people. Many people can go years without being diagnosed because the symptoms can sometimes go unnoticed. It is very important you watch for risk factors and get with your doctor if you think you may be at risk for diabetes. It can be diagnosed with a simple blood sugar test. The good news is Type 2 diabetes can be controlled in most cases and in some cases preventable or reversed through adopting a healthy lifestyle.
A few things to consider:
Type 1 diabetes is less common and only affects about 5-10% of people with diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is best known as juvenile diabetes or insulin-dependent diabetes. It is usually diagnosed in children or teens but can develop at any age. For parents, it can be a very scary time learning to manage this disease. See a story below from Maria Yeo, a Science Care team member who suffers from Type 1 diabetes, and cares for her toddler who has also been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.
In May 2000, a few months before diagnosis, I started to feel very tired after school. All I wanted to do was sleep. That is one of the first symptoms of diabetes (tiredness). I was also extremely thirsty; I would drink a 1-liter bottle of water in pretty much one gulp. We were not concerned as summers in AZ are brutal; we drink a ton of water, feel tired from heat exhaustion, you name it. But it was my rapid weight loss that was a concern; I went from 200lbs to 145lbs in just 2 months.
I started to feel shortness of breath, walking would make me tired, I had a headache, I was not eating, and all I wanted was water. We went to the emergency room and I was quickly admitted with a blood sugar of over 800 and an extremely large number of ketones in my blood. This was the night I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.
My admitting diagnosis was Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA), which is a buildup of acids in the blood that happens when blood sugars are high for so long. This means that my cells couldn’t use the sugar in my blood for energy, so they use fat for fuel instead. Burning fat makes acids called ketones. Very similar to the new “KETO” trend that people are using to lose weight except Ketoacidosis is a life-threatening condition. I spent a week in the ICU and had to get all kinds of IV fluids, from insulin to minerals like sodium, and my least favorite, potassium.
After my hospital stay, I struggled to get control; I was only 15 years old and my dad would be the one to give me insulin shots. Then one day I felt sick and needed a shot and he wasn’t there. I remember grabbing the needle and bottle of insulin and staring at it for a while. I thought to myself, “My dad isn’t going to be with me forever, I need to learn”, and I stuck that needle in my stomach. I didn’t need my dad after that. To this day, taking a shot of the one thing that keeps me alive is no sweat: I’m an expert. I take a minimum of 4 shots a day of insulin.
Control is hard at times but the one thing that keeps me going is the love I have for my family and myself. With hard work, I was able to achieve an A1C of 5.7. Self-love is important and one of the biggest key factors in controlling any chronic illness. Once we can learn how to love ourselves it is empowering, because no one will understand our struggles, tribulations, and our goals but ourselves.
With Type 1 Diabetes, I had two healthy pregnancies. I had to have an A1C of less than 7 to start off the pregnancy right. Anything else would be a risk for a miscarriage; I have had a total of 6 miscarriages due to poor control and/or other factors. When planning a healthy pregnancy as a diabetic, make sure those sugars are in the range to achieve a successful and full-term baby. Both of my daughters were full-term, weighing in at a healthy 7lbs each. Diabetics tend to have large babies weighing in at 9 to 10lbs but I was lucky.
I live a normal life despite the extra work that goes into taking care of myself, plus also a now 20-month-old Type 1 Diabetic. Yes, my younger baby was also diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes on June 26th, 2021. Luckily, I knew all the signs and she was not on DKA when we took her to the emergency room.
Every morning, I wake up, I check my sugars first, take my insulin, then check my baby’s blood sugar and give her the insulin shots she needs in the am. She gets two shots every morning: the slow and fast-acting insulin. I take my slow acting at night and she takes it in the morning.
Packing for a trip outside of the house is another struggle. We plan snacks for any unplanned low blood sugars. Low blood sugar can cause us to feel lightheaded, confused, or even to become unresponsive. It is always important we have a plan to try and prevent a low.
We always pack both of our blood glucose meters, test strips, syringes for insulin, and our insulin bottles. This is all aside from the normal things we find in a diaper bag. I have had to turn the car around halfway to my destination because I forgot one of these.
It took me years to gain control and manage my diabetes, but I wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for those trials and tribulations. It is a learning process even with a newly diagnosed toddler, but I am happy she will have me to teach her the ropes, and then she can take control as she gets older.
For more information on Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes https://www.diabetes.org/
Science Care Donors aid in supporting research and development into treatments to alleviate the symptoms and causes of Type II Diabetes. Members of our donor community have contributed to advancements in various treatments intended to improve quality of life for those afflicted by adult onset diabetes, including improved technologies and methods utilized in duodenal mucosal resurfacing (DMR) procedures. DMR is a minimally invasive endoscopic procedure that has the effect of improving and aiding regulation of a patient’s natural glycemic control. Additionally, donors from the Science Care community have aided in bringing about advancements in the diagnosis and monitoring of diabetes by contributing revolutionary early stage diagnostic testing and more accurate, real time glucose and analyte monitoring. Early detection and more accurate monitoring can afford patients a higher quality of life by providing more accurate information, thereby aiding in making better choices which support their overall health.
This is a comment or question we hear often from people of all ages! You may be surprised to hear that most people meet the criteria for donation to science, including those with previous surgeries, cancer, heart disease, arthritis, diabetes, and many other chronic conditions. Anyone 18 years of age or older should consider themselves a potential donor.
Visit our website for the most up-to-date information on our Program www.sciencecare.com
Whether you’re just trying to be the healthiest version of yourself this holiday season or you must keep sugar content low for health reasons, you won’t have to skip out on pumpkin pie this year. Try this delicious pumpkin pie recipe from Eating Well for a low sugar treat with the same great taste.
Get the classic creamy pumpkin taste but less saturated fat and sugar with this lightened-up recipe.
To prepare oil pastry: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a medium bowl, stir together flour and salt. Add oil and 1/4 cup milk all at once to the flour mixture. Stir lightly with a fork until combined (the dough will appear crumbly). Gather the flour mixture into a ball, kneading gently until it holds together.
On a well-floured surface, use your hands to slightly flatten the pastry dough. Roll dough from center to edge into a circle about 12 inches in diameter. To transfer pastry, wrap it around the rolling pin. Unroll pastry onto a 9-inch pie plate. Ease pastry into pie plate, being careful not to stretch pastry. Trim pastry to 1/2 inch beyond edge of pie plate. Fold under extra pastry. Flute or crimp edge as desired. Do not prick pastry.
To prepare pumpkin filling: In a medium bowl combine pumpkin, sugar, honey, the 1 teaspoon cinnamon, the ginger, and the 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg. Add egg and vanilla. Beat lightly with a fork just until combined. Gradually stir in evaporated milk. Pour pumpkin mixture into prepared pastry shell.
To prevent overbrowning, cover edge of the pie with foil. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes more or until filling appears set (edges of filling may crack slightly).
Cool completely on a wire rack. Cover and refrigerate within 2 hours. If desired, serve with dessert topping and sprinkle with additional cinnamon and/or nutmeg.
Tips: Sugar Substitutes: Choose from Splenda Granular or Sweet' N Low bulk or packets. Follow package directions to use product amount equivalent to 1/3 cup sugar. PER SERVING WITH SUBSTITUTE: same as above, except 164 calories, 24 g carbohydrate, 9 g total sugar, Exchanges: 0 other carb. Carb Choice: 1.5
For more recipes visit: www.eatingwell.com
You can’t have turkey without the stuffing; it’s just not Thanksgiving dinner without it. This year give this cauliflower stuffing a try for a healthy spin on a traditional flavor you don’t want to miss. It’s low carb, but packed with the delicious flavor without having to compromise your health goals!
Caregiving is a challenging job! It is filled with baths, shopping, cleaning, administering medications, and most importantly comforting ill people who are often our friends and loved ones. Research indicates caregiving can take a significant emotional, physical, and financial toll. With nearly half of all caregivers over age 50, many tend to experience a decline in their own health. It is very important caregivers also take the time to care for themselves and explore resources to assist them. A great resource to explore is https://www.caregiving.org/resources/
If you are caring for a loved one that is terminally ill or under hospice care who is interested in body donation to science or hasn’t enrolled in the Science Care HOPE™ Program for priority screening, you can visit our website to get more information to get them enrolled today https://www.sciencecare.com/start-medical-screening.
Did you know 5,200,000 pounds of pickles are eaten each year in the United States? National Pickle Day recognizes the tart, sometimes sweet, and even spicy pickle. Each year on November 14th, pickle lovers open a jar of their favorite kind of pickles. It may be a Dill, Gherkin, Cornichon, Brined, Kosher Dill, Polish, Hungarian, Lime, Bread and Butter, Swedish and Danish, or Kool-Aid Pickle. Did you know there were so many options?
Fun Potential Health Benefits of Pickles
Topping the Billboard music charts for October 1971 was “Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves” by Cher. Topping the Country charts was “Daddy Frank (The Guitar Man)” by Merle Haggard.
With news and updates posted all the time, Social Media is the fastest way to keep connected.
Sharing our posts on Facebook and Instagram is the ultimate word of mouth and social endorsement. Every time you share one of our posts you help spread the word to your friends and family of the ultimate gift of donation.