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New 'ears' for hearing-impaired son give Brandon family a jump-start

New 'ears' for hearing-impaired son give Brandon family a jump-start

Instead of soaking in the sweetness of her newborn son, Marlee Weir was praying he would suffer only hearing loss.

That’s because sometime before birth, her son Reece became infected with cytomegalovirus (CMV). After a normal pregnancy, he was born severely jaundiced and covered in little purple spots. Marlee and her husband Casey were shaken, but the Brandon residents quickly learned there could be bigger problems ahead. 

CMV is a common virus that causes mostly cold symptoms in healthy adults, but can cause a host of problems in babies infected in utero. According to the Centers for Disease Control, about 1 in 5 infants with a congenital CMV infection like Reece’s will suffer more permanent disabilities including developmental disabilities or hearing loss.

“I prayed a lot that day and the following days as we camped out in the neonatal intensive care unit that if something had to be wrong, for it to be hearing because I knew the technology available and knew that we could address hearing loss quickly,” she said.  

Over the next two weeks, she began to think her prayers had been answered. 

“I kind of had mother’s intuition that he was not hearing because he wouldn’t startle to loud noises,” Marlee said.

A few weeks after his birth, Reece had a hearing screening at the University of Mississippi Medical Center and her suspicion was confirmed – he had severe to profound hearing loss in both ears.

A 2010 graduate of UMMC’s School of Health Related Professions, Marlee Weir’s training as an occupational therapist kicked in. She knew learning during the first three years of a child’s life was crucial and immediately began researching Reece’s options.

“I know that the younger you start things with kids, the better the outcomes will be,” she said. 

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Waist size tops BMI as obesity measure, experts say

Waist size tops BMI as obesity measure, experts say

One of the biggest health issues facing Mississippi and the nation is obesity, yet the way the problem is measured remains debated.

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has popularized the Body Mass Index, a formula using a person’s height and weight as an effective way to identify obesity, the location of body fat isn’t taken into account.

“The fat that’s in your abdomen -- the visceral fat around the organs -- is what’s important in increasing risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes,” said Dr. John Hall, chair of the Department of Physiology and Biophysics and lead investigator for the University of Mississippi Medical Center’s Mississippi Center for Obesity Research. 

Most of the chronic diseases for which obesity is a risk factor are related to the visceral, or deep, fat, he said. The subcutaneous fat, the kind found under the skin in areas such as the thighs or buttocks, may not cause as many problems.

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Bacon puts sizzle in UMMC’s anesthesiology department

A case of bad timing a few years ago stopped Dr. Douglas Bacon from interviewing for the top position in the Department of Anesthesiology at the University of Mississippi Medical Center.

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Bacon puts sizzle in UMMC’s anesthesiology department

UMMC staff receive service recognition

The Medical Center is proud to acknowledge those employees who will celebrate service anniversaries this week:

25 Years

* Gloria Fowler, medical office assistant, Internal Medicine/University Physicians Renal/Transplant
* Janet Gray, technician, Environmental Services
* Elaine Jacobs, technician, Environmental Services

20 Years

* Stafford Collier, receiving supervisor, Shipping Receiving
* Felice Gray, research specialist, School of Medicine (Geriatric Residency)

15 Years

* Jamie Curry, coder, Charge Entry
* Myra Fowler, medical technologist, Nursery Clinical Lab
* Deborah Johnson, ambulatory nurse, Batson Children’s Hospital Gastro Lab
* Celia Richardson, inpatient nurse, CCH Neuroscience ICU

10 Years

* Sandra Adams, phlebotomist, Pavilion Clinical Lab
* Sharon Greer, business operations supervisor, School of Medicine (Pathology)
* Larry Grubbs, senior systems administrator, Information Systems
* Frankie Morgan, administrative assistant, School of Medicine (Emergency Medicine)
* Tabatha Payne-Buckner, pharmacy technician, Mall Retail Pharmacy
* Marilyn Roberts, deputy business administrator, School of Medicine (Otolaryngology and Communicative Sciences)
* Hilda Smith, medical technologist, After Hours Lab
* Kimberly Stonecypher, clinical director, Adult Nursing Administration
* Deloris Walls, pharmacy technician, SSC Pharmacy

5 Years

* Tommy England, dialysis nurse, Inpatient Dialysis
* Susan Martin, oncology nurse, University Physicians Radiation Oncology/Cancer Institute Hematology/Oncology
* Cheryl McCoy, unit secretary, Ambulatory Surgery (University Hospital)
* Dr. Deepal Shah, house officer, School of Medicine (Neurology)

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Guest presentations highlight UMMC calendar

Guest presentations highlight UMMC calendar

A number of interesting events is scheduled for the upcoming week at the Medical Center.

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