Nurse’s Generosity Swayed Patient to Take Lifesaving Medication


Lori Mesko, RN

I want to share a special story about Lori Mesko, RN, who works on Botsford Hospital’s 2 South Progressive Care Unit. Sometimes nurses don’t get recognized for all they do. I want to make sure Lori does, because she gave very special care to my mom, who has been having a very rough time recently.

Mom’s potassium level was dangerously high, which, if untreated, could have caused her heart to stop beating. The physician prescribed a huge glass of medicine for Mom to drink. But, she just did not want to take any nourishment just then. Lori needed to find a way to convince Mom to accept the treatment. Continue reading

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Botsford Cancer Center Offers National Clinical Trials to Patients


Botsford Cancer Center in Farmington Hills

Of course you wouldn’t want to receive a diagnosis of cancer from your physician. It would be an overwhelming time of new terms, tests, procedures and treatment to face in the weeks, months and years to come. You might even be approached by your physician during the workup about participating in a clinical trial and wonder if this would be the right choice for you. Continue reading

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Celebrate World Diabetes Day Nov. 14 at Botsford

celebrate-world-diabetes-day-nov14Thirty years ago, about 30 million people were living with diabetes. Today, this number has multiplied more than ten times to 371 million worldwide. An additional 280 million people are at high risk of developing the disease. Furthermore, by 2030, this number could exceed half a billion people ( Continue reading

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Cancer Patients Go Green! For Health

Cancer Patients Go Green!Pssst… thankfully, you don’t have to have cancer to reap solid nutritional advice from this blog post.

The meaning of Go Green! changes from person to person.

  • A fan of Michigan State University chants Go Green! and waits for the crowd’s response of Go White! at football games.
  • An environmentalist says Go Green! to encourage us to reduce our carbon footprint.
  • A registered dietitian coaches patients at Botsford Cancer Center to Go Green! for the health benefits.

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One Day, Many Lives Forever Changed For The Better in Botsford’s ER

One Day, Many Lives Forever Changed in Botsford's ER

Mom and baby, Adrienne and Cameron Herrick, returned to Botsford's ER 11 days later to thank everyone.

This true story tells how an amazing team of physicians and nurses who work in Botsford Hospitals’ Emergency and Trauma Center saved a five-month old baby boy from certain death. While at daycare, Cameron Herrick of Redford swallowed his whole pacifier, which blocked his airway.

Caution: Graphic details have been included, describing the necessary medical procedures performed on this tiny patient.

“It was the scariest case in my 10 years of practicing!” said Dr. Angel Chudler, who led the ER team to save Cameron.

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Q&A With Dr. Brodsky About Using Single-Site da Vinci Robotic Hysterectomy To Treat Benign Conditions

Dr. Burton Brodsky Next to da Vinci Robot

Dr. Burton Brodsky Next to da Vinci Robot

You may have recently seen Dr. Burton Brodsky, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Botsford Hospital, in a feature story that appeared in the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers. If you missed this exciting story on the First Single-Site Robotic Hysterectomy in Michigan, check it out now.

View Large Image of Dr. Burton Brodsky Next to da Vinci Robot

Q&A with Dr. Brodsky

What types of benign conditions could you treat by doing a hysterectomy using Single-Site robotic hysterectomy? I would consider women suffering with endometriosis, excessive menstrual bleeding, or uterine fibroids as candidates for Single-Site robotic hysterectomy.

What are the benefits of Single-Site robotic hysterectomy compared to open surgery? For most women, Single-Site robotic hysterectomy offers virtually scarless results, minimal pain, low blood loss and faster recovery. The surgery usually can be performed in a relatively short amount of time with a typical hospital stay of less than 24 hours.

What if a woman has a benign gynecological condition, but she’s already had one or more Cesarean births or other abdominal surgeries? The decision to use robotic-assisted surgery is made case by case. But, I can tell you that I have had success using Single-Site robotic hysterectomy on women who have had previous abdominal surgeries. In fact, my very first patient using this technique had previously had three C-sections and two other abdominal surgeries to remove her gall bladder and her appendix.

As a benign gynecologic surgeon, why do you prefer Single-Site robotic hysterectomy over open surgery? Da Vinci surgeons make just one small incision instead of a large incision. The da Vinci System features a magnified 3D high-definition vision system and special wristed instruments that bend and rotate far greater than the human wrist. As a result, da Vinci enables me to operate with enhanced vision, precision, dexterity, and control.

Why should a woman choose to have her benign hysterectomy at Botsford Hospital? I have been performing robotic surgeries for several years and recently trained on the Single-Site instrumentation. My surgical team at Botsford and I recently performed the first single-site robotic hysterectomy in the State of Michigan right here in Farmington Hills. This is a perfect example of the great strides Botsford has made in becoming a multidisciplinary robotic surgical center. Besides, it’s convenient! A woman doesn’t have to go to a large, impersonal hospital that’s a long way from her home for this procedure. She can have this done right here at Botsford where we practice compassion as well as advanced surgical techniques.

More About da Vinci© Robotic Surgery and da Vinci Gynecological Surgery

Lookup Dr. Burton Brodsky in the Botsford Physician Directory

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Making a Difference in Someone’s Life

By Nicholle Mehr
Director, Botsford Cancer Center

Nicholle Mehr, Director, Botsford Cancer Center

Nicholle Mehr, Director, Botsford Cancer Center

Last week I went to the funeral of one of my most favorite patients. This woman touched so many of us across our organization. When she was first diagnosed she was scared and questioned everything. Her fear was palpable. Over time and through continuous efforts she relied on us for support and was given it with open arms by the loving and quality-driven team here at the Botsford Cancer Center.

As I sat and listened to the priest tell stories about her and her family at the funeral, I looked around the packed room at all of the friends and relatives that this particular patient had. The stories were heartwarming.

As healthcare providers we are not only caring for the patient themselves but all of their close friends and family members.

The kindness, concern and care that we show for the individual patient has an effect on a very large number of people. The quality-of-life of each patient is affected by the care that they receive, which influences their interactions with their loved ones.

A family member who is sitting bedside in the hospital with their loved one experiences a vast array of emotions. When a loved one is not well the friend or family member may feel uncertainty, worry or grief. These are trying, challenging and worrisome times for a patient or loved one.

I define healthcare providers as anyone who cares for or interacts with a patient in the healthcare setting, including licensed personnel and volunteers. The largest difference can be made by the interactions we have with each patient. The providers include: the nurse, doctor, transporter, receptionist, volunteer, pharmacist, environmental services employee, maintenance, aide, technologist, therapist, etc. As healthcare providers we can alleviate the fear and loss of control experienced through genuine relationship building.

These interactions such as getting a patient a warm blanket, offering something to drink or just asking how they are doing can make a difference.

By expressing kindness, concern, by listening or just taking a minute to show that you care could help alleviate some of the emotional burdens that these patients and their families have to shoulder.

In her final days she knew her time had come and she came to visit us. She thanked us for the love and compassion that she received and for the never ending support. She gave us a card that said, “It’s sometimes easy to forget that there are nice people out there doing nice things for others. Thanks for being such a special reminder.”

We were blessed that she allowed us the opportunity to care for her. When given a chance to make a difference in someone’s life – make it.

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Wig Service at Botsford Cancer Center Uplifts Patients’ Spirits

Karen Gara - New Reflections Boutique - Botsford Hospital

Karen Gara - New Reflections Boutique

About a year ago I began collaborating with the people who run the Botsford Cancer Center to figure out how we could provide a very special service to patients who would be losing their hair due to the side effects of chemotherapy. I quickly found out why patients are so devoted to this place.

Hope. Love. Knowledge.

Everybody gets treated with care and compassion, like they were cherished family members. I knew I had chosen to work with the right cancer center, because this is just how my staff and I treat our clients.

A new service was born out of these discussions that can restore a cancer patient’s self-confidence and sense of identity. We christened it the New Reflections Boutique, Services by Rebecca’s Wigs.

Hair: a source of self-confidence and identity

When a woman experiences hair loss, she can lose her sense of self. Wearing a wig can help her to feel like her old self. Wigs for female cancer patients can offer a sense of empowerment during a very scary, uncontrollable time.

Impeccable service and products

Some who use our wig service at Botsford Cancer Center are unable to drive or do not have access to transportation, so we are a one-stop shop for them. We schedule personal consultations with patients in private rooms where we assist them in selecting flattering wig styles. We offer these same private appointments at our downtown Farmington store, where we’ve just added a new wig studio featuring more than 100 wig styles and other accessories.

Our boutique located on the second floor of the Botsford Cancer Center offers many other products to help women feel beautiful and cared for while healing. Our merchandise includes personal hygiene products, headware, inspirational jewelry, key rings, greetings cards, and bookmarks.

Hours and Contact Information

Call 248-477-3033 to schedule a private, personal consultation at either location. New Reflections Boutique is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday. If it would be more convenient for you, schedule your consultation at our downtown Farmington store, just a five-minute drive west from Botsford. Please visit and

  • New Reflections Boutique, Services by Rebecca’s Wigs
    Inside the Botsford Cancer Center
    27900 Grand River Avenue
    Farmington Hills, MI 48336
  • Rebecca’s Wigs
    Located in
    Merle Norman of Farmington
    23348 Farmington Road
    Farmington, MI 48336

Frequently Asked Questions About Hair Loss

  • Will I lose all of my hair while going through chemotherapy?
    Depending on your treatment plan, you may lose the hair on your head and possibly your eyebrows and eyelashes. It is different with each person. Your doctor will monitor this.
  • When should I shop for a wig?
    We suggest you schedule a consultation before you start treatment to allow time to have your wig before you experience hair loss. We will be able to see your natural hair and talk with you about your lifestyle, your likes and dislikes.
  • Is it difficult to care for a wig?
    Wearing a wig involves very little care and styling. The fibers have “memory.” The wig will retain its style and look with little fuss.
  • What is the cost of a wig?
    They range in price depending on what type you select. Some insurance providers will cover a majority of the expense. You can contact your provider for covered services. There should be a toll-free number on the back of your insurance card. If your insurance does not cover these expenses, please talk with us as we may be able to offer a discounted program to uninsured clients.

By Karen Gara, owner, New Reflections Boutique, Services by Rebecca’s Wigs at Botsford Cancer Center and Merle Norman of Farmington.

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Taking Care of Caregivers

Senior laughing with caregiver outside on a bright, warm day.

65 million Americans are non-medical professionals who are now caregivers.

According to The Mayo Clinic the incidence of non-medical professionals who are now caregivers exceeds 65 million Americans. Generally the care is provided to a loved one in need, including a spouse, parent, sibling, or disabled child. According to Novak (2013), most caregivers are of the “sandwich generation”; have a living parent age 65 or greater, are raising a child in the home who is 18 or younger, and/or are financially supporting a grown child. More than 60% of caregivers have part or full-time jobs in addition to their caregiving responsibilities. At least one in six caregivers reports a decline in their personal health after taking on their caregiver duties and two of five caregivers report financial difficulties (Novak, 2013).

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ER Physician’s Hot-Weather Hydration Advice

We have seen a moderate uptick in visits for heat-related causes at Botsford Hospital’s Emergency & Trauma Center. Mostly it’s been for dehydration with relatively mild symptoms, including headaches.

On these blistering hot days, please heed the advice of Jacklyn McParlane, D.O., Botsford’s vice chair of emergency Medicine and Emergency Medicine residency program director.

Dr. McParlane says that people seem to be having a hard time keeping up with the amount of fluids they need to drink in this hot weather. On a normal temperature day, people should be taking in eight 8-oz. glasses of water. On these high heat days, and especially if you’re working or playing outside, people may need to double their water intake. She’s encountered patients who have a difficult time knowing how much water to drink to stay hydrated.

Dr. McParlane also suggests that parents closely monitor kids playing outdoors. Have them stop to drink fluids every 20 minutes. Bring kids in during the hottest part of the day for indoor activities, such as screen time, or take them to the movies where it’s air conditioned.

Finally, Dr. McParlane suggests that all people, including kids, get into the habit of carrying a water bottle with them, so that they can drink from it.

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