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When a flood happens in a community

When a flood happens in a community it can be very upsetting for people, but there is a lot family, friends, volunteers and the community can do to help those that are impacted.
Helpful thinking: Your thinking may have shifted to be more negative, for example, “Bad things always happen to people around me”. Our thoughts have a direct impact on how we feel. If you notice that your thinking has shifted to see the world as more unpredictable and dangerous, you are more likely to be feeling sad, helpless or scared. It helps to change our way of thinking to more helpful thought patterns. Firstly, we need to be aware of our thinking and catch our negative thoughts. The second step is to come up with a more helpful and positive thought, that puts us more in control. For example, “This is hard and it takes a lot of work, but I’ll just keep doing little things each day that make it better.”
Maintain social connections: We know that people need people. After a disaster, being with people can give us a sense of belonging, of feeling loved and cared for and that we’re not alone. Reconnecting with others is important for our wellbeing – but also for theirs. Helping out a community member who has suffered in the flood – or just lending an ear – can give us a sense of purpose and increase our own motivation and energy.
Making time for pleasurable activities: Doing what you enjoy is good for you. After a disaster, many people feel like they have lost control of their life. Finding a new balance between work, getting life back on track and looking forward to doing something pleasurable gives us hope. So, plan something you like to do – watch a DVD, go for a bushwalk, go out for a night with friends, watch a game of football, or go to bed early with a good book.
Be kind to yourself: Give yourself time to adjust – it can take time to bounce back. Keep reminding yourself that things will get better and you have the skills to manage. Ask for help if you need it. Try to avoid self-medicating (using alcohol or other drugs to cope) and instead express your feelings through journaling, art, or talking to friends.
Things should slowly go back to normal and you should feel better over time. If that doesn’t happen and you are still struggling after 2-3 months, talk to your GP. For more information and specific help for children: www.psychology.org.au/for-the-public/Psychology-topics/Disasters

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Dr Aldenb Lorenzo General Surgeon BSE MD FRACS ANZGOSA

Dr Aldenb Lorenzo underwent his general surgical training in Sydney West Area Health Service hospitals with  Westmead Hospital as the training institution. He was awarded his fellowship in general surgery (Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, FRACS) in 2017, after which he became the Clinical Superintendent in Blacktown and Mt Druitt Hospitals for two years. He went through a post-fellowship year of rigorous training in general upper gastrointestinal surgery in St. Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney with a focus on complex hiatus hernia repair in lung transplant patients. He has been fortunate to be accepted to the prestigious Australia and New Zealand Gastroesophageal Surgical Association (ANZGOSA) where he spent a year of his post-fellowship training in the Bariatric and Upper Gastrointestinal Unit in Auckland City Hospital, New Zealand, mastering bariatric and upper gastrointestinal surgery to add to his general surgical repertoire.

He is an educator with a passion for research. His hobbies are his two kids and his 4-year-old Labrador, on top of basketball, volleyball, cycling.

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History of Glenorie ( District ) Medical Centre by Dr P Gibian

In 1984 the original Glenorie Medical Centre was opened by Dr Molly Hyslop and Dr Pip Gibian at 6 Post Office Road, Glenorie. For the two of us this was a big challenge. We both had families, with our youngest both 6 years old. After failing to find suitable rental premises in the area, we bought this house. Money was tight. We repainted it ourselves and renewed the garden. We retained the previous owner’s carpet and curtains for quite some years. The office furniture was mostly second-hand, as was some of the medical equipment. At that time Glenorie was very rural, surrounded by working farms. Everyone knew each other. Many farms were owned by Italian migrants from the 1960’s. They grew vegetables and fruit, but above all flowers. Their chrysanthemums and roses were legendary. The two quarter-acre residential areas were largely populated by young married couples. Housing in Glenorie was a little cheaper than other local suburban areas, allowing them to invest in their own homes.

We had investigated the area and thought there was some need for more medical services in Glenorie. This was an underestimation. The practice grew rapidly, along with the local birth rate. In those days it seemed a very long way to the nearest hospital, and dedicated after hours medical services did not exist. We shared night and weekend call with Galston Medical Centre, with the doctor-on-call looking after both practices. The home visit area ranged from Dural and Galston to Maroota. We ran Saturday and Sunday morning surgeries. Farm accidents and emergency medicine were not rare. Fortunately we were able to employ some part-time assistants. Over the years we acquired great receptionists, some really good nurses, and above all many wonderful patients. The practice continued to grow.

It started as a “little ladies practice” as it was dubbed by one observer, and became a thriving family practice known for high quality, caring medical care.

In 2007 we sold the practice to Dr. Clare Donnelly, who had worked with us for quite some years. She changed the business name to Glenorie District Medical Centre, and built a great, purpose-built surgery at 920B Old Northern Road. We both continued to work at the practice for many more years.  Glenorie has changed a great deal since 1984, and the practice has modernised in tune with the times.

The business is now owned by Drs Belinda and Sheila Lorenzo. Now the practice is much larger, has more doctors, more nurses, pathology services and  other medical services, but continues to be a real family general practice, as it always was. The Glenorie Medical Centre of old lives on in good hands.

Pip Gibian and Molly Hyslop

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HRT and risk of breast cancer: The Age Old Debate

By Dr Sheila Lorenzo – Glenorie District Medical Centre

A meta-analysis published in the Lancet entitled Menopausal hormone therapy and 20-year breast cancer mortality showed that the risk of breast cancer was found to have increased the longer women used HRT, and doubling for women who used it for 10 years vs five years. However, there was no increased risk for women who used HRT for less than a year, and those who used it on and off were found to have a lower risk than those who used it daily.1

However, there are other factors that contribute to the risk of breast cancer.

Studies have shown that intake of 3 standard alcoholic drinks per week increases the risk of developing breast cancer by 15%! The risk further increases by another 10% for each additional standard alcoholic drink women have each day. It’s interesting to note that this increase is higher than that associated with HRT alone.  The results of studies linking breast cancer and HRT are based on older formulations of HRT which has dramatically changed2.

 

There is also convincing evidence that being overweight and obese increases the risk not only of breast cancer but also bowel, oesophageal, pancreatic, kidney, and liver cancer. Observational studies, on the other hand, have shown that smoking increases the risk of breast cancer development by as high as 14%. Those who began smoking before the age of 17 have an increased risk as high as 24%3.

 

Medications can be viewed as double-edged swords in that they have benefits and risks.

Hormone replacement therapy is not an exception with its attendant advantages and disadvantages.  It was intended to alleviate menopausal symptoms such as hot flushes and vaginal dryness.  The risk associated with breast cancer and HRT has been a longstanding debate that up to now has not been conclusively resolved.

 

It is imperative that a shared decision making between you and your GP be placed so risks and benefits can be weighed and the appropriate treatment tailored to you.

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National Bowel Cancer Screening: Got the kit? Just do it! -three

National Bowel Cancer Screening: Got the kit? Just do it!

Australia has one of the highest rates of bowel cancer in the world. That is 1 in 23 Australians! Fortunately, we have a simple screening test. This is called the Faecal Occult Blood Test (FOBT). However, only a 39% of Australians who receive the free kit use it. The main reason? They are too busy.

People aged 50 to 74 years old, who are without symptoms, are invited to participate. Your faeces may look normal, but the FOBT can detect blood that is invisible to the naked eye. Bowel cancer, when diagnosed early, can be treated successfully.

If you receive the National Bowel Cancer Screening Program Kit, please do not throw it away or keep it in your drawer. Just do it.

*** if you have changes in your bowels habits, blood in your stools, black stools, you don’t need bowel screening. You need to see your GP.