April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month; free screenings offered

 School of Dental Medicine  Comments Off on April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month; free screenings offered
Apr 052013

The Oral Cancer Foundation estimates that close to 42,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal cancer this year. It will cause over 8,000 deaths, killing roughly one person per hour, 24 hours per day. Pitt County has the seventh highest death rate due to cancer of the oral cavity and pharynx among North Carolina’s 100 counties.

The American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons says: “While smoking and heavy drinking are still major risk factors, the fastest growing segment of oral cancer patients is young, healthy, nonsmoking individuals under the age of 40. Recent research has identified the human papilloma virus version 16 as being sexually transmitted between partners and related to the increasing incidence of oral cancer in young non-smoking patients.

There are also links to young men and women who use conventional “smokeless” chewing or spit tobacco. Promoted by some as a safer alternative to smoking, this form of tobacco use is actually no safer when it comes to oral cancers.

Other factors that may promote oral cancer include physical trauma, infectious disease, poor oral hygiene and poor nutrition; however, the research regarding their involvement is uncertain. It is likely that there is a complex interaction of many external and internal factors that play a role in the development of oral cancer.”

For an Oral Cancer Self Examination Guide and Oral Cancer Fact Sheet, visit http://www.aaoms.org/oral_cancer_awareness.php.

The American Dental Association and the Oral Cancer Foundation encourage people to take part in Oral Cancer Awareness Month by visiting a dentist for an oral cancer screening. 

Free Screenings

ECU School of Dental Medicine faculty and students will conduct free oral cancer screenings 12:30-2:30 p.m., Saturday, April 6 at the Clark-LeClair Stadium Gate #2 during the home baseball game. The stadium is located on Charles Boulevard just south of Greenville Boulevard in Greenville.

There also are several income-based dental clinics in the vicinity of ECU that provide cancer screenings such as the Bernstein Community Health Center in Greenville, 252-695-6355; Kinston Community Health Center, 252-522-9800; and the Greene County Dental Clinic, 252-747-8181. Additionally, N.C. Missions of Mercy dental clinics provide screenings and treatments without cost; visit www.ncdental.org/ncds/NCMOM.asp.





Taking time to care

 College of Nursing  Comments Off on Taking time to care
Apr 022013

Even though health care legislation is on the minds of everyone, it is important to take a step back and think about how important it is to care about yourself, your colleagues and your patients.

Dr. Jean Watson visits ECU this week to talk with nursing faculty, students and guests from Vidant Health Systems about her human caring theory which is a staple in clinical agencies and academic programs around the world. Watson’s theory encourages nurses to consider a caring model that includes her Ten Caritas Processes™. The processes urge nurses to be reflective and aware of patients’ physical, emotional and spiritual needs.

Watson is the guest speaker for the annual Siegfried Lowin Distinguished Scholar Series Lecture, created by Drs. Mary Ann Rose and Walter Pories in 2007. It is named in memory of Dr. Pories’ relative, Siegfried Lowin, who died in 1989. Lowin greatly respected the nurses who cared for him throughout his extended illness and the lecture series was given to the ECU College of Nursing in his honor.

Nurses touch many lives during their daily work. Sometimes, patients and nurses do not immediately realize the significance of these touches. Be sure to notice the impact you have on others—your kind words will stay with a patient for a lifetime.

Sylvia T. Brown, EdD, RN, CNE
Dean and Professor
ECU College of Nursing