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March 28, 1997     Cape Gazette
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March 28, 1997

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CAPE GAZETI'E, Friday, March 28- April 3, 1997. 35 HEALTH & FITNESS Birch By Trish Vernon Elizabeth Seguirra Maltez, a of the eye, 17-year-old Nicaraguan girl who area was distorting launCo,00S effort to get care for teen tures, not to mentiol able pain and presl endured. The Birches retu with Elizabeth's m and CT scan film,. took to Robert Se neuro-ophthalmolc with the renowned stitute in Philadelpt Upon reviewing i ports, Sergott agre Birth's diagnosis suffering from an fistula behind the k the result of her They also agreed tion would not would in fact wors gical intervention. "There is also th the fistula could bu resulting at best in or at worst, death, she needs just isn Nicaragua," Mel plained. "While Elizabett as poor as many fa agua, there are no trip to the United medical care, so very generously offered to per- form the surgery gratis," Melanie noted. The Birches, who will host Elizabeth in their home and provide all care and transportatiq here, are presentl 2 American Airlinq Air KIDS Advant2 help with airfare, i Eye Institute is n, the swelling and temple her facial fea- t the consider- ;ure Elizabeth med stateside dical records ;, which they gott, M.D., a gist affiliated Wills Eye In- ia. er medical re- with David Elizabeth is xterial-venous Ft eye which is lead trauma. mt her condi- reprove, but , without sur- suffered severe head injuries when she fell from a moving bus last summer, has found a guardian angel in David R. Birch, D.O. of Rehoboth Beach. Birch, along with his wife Melanie, a registered nurse; Pas- tor Gary Ross of Midway Assembly of God and his son Jonathan, a student at Cape Hen- lopen High School, and Sharon Kor- week of Mil- ton, recently returned from Birch with a two weeks of small patient ministering to the poor in that Central American country, with the realization that their work is far from complete. Under the auspices of former Rehoboth Beach Pastor Luis AI- mondoz, who has been striving to establish a church and school in Nicaragua for the past three years, Birch and company set up free medical clinics in the cities of Managua and Nagarote. "It was at the clinic that we ex- amined Elizabeth," said Melanie Birch. "She was unconscious for a period of time after she hit her head when she fell from the bus and was hospitalized for three days.. Following a CT scan, she was recuperating fine for a few weeks until she began to develop swelling around her left eye and temple." Her condition continued to worsen as the months passed, and by the time the Birches examined her in February, her left eyeball potential that st at any time, brain damage, nd the surgery t available in lie Birch ex- 's family isn't milies in Man- :esources for a tates or for the hr. Sergott has .... , , ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::iiiiiiiii:.::iiii::::::::::ii !ii .... ::ii::i ::::iii::":-!:.::::::::iiii::::::i ::" :. I while she is Working with s' "American ;e" program to lowever, Wills interested in working with them in reducing hospital charges, which they esti- mate will be at least $5,000. Having worked at free medical clinics with local missionaries not only in the barrios of Nicaragua, but also in Haiti, Equador and Co- lumbia, the Birches are very aware of the supportive and gen- erous businesses in the Cape Re- gion who have come to their aid in the past, and they hope the community will reach out and help Elizabeth as well. For instance, Rehoboth's Kmart supplied them with vitamins and vials for dispensing medication, while Thrift Drug of Rehoboth Beach donated antibiotics. Sever- al drug companies have also pro- vided them with medication, and the local McDonalds, Burger King and Kentucky Fried Chicken corporations donated toys like those used in their children's meals, which for many of the chil- dren who visit their clinics, are the only toys they have. Almondoz is also in need of as- sistance as he goes about estab- lishing a ranch producing crops such as papayas, coconuts, avoca- dos and oranges to generate in- come for his children's ministry, "The Hope of His Calling." "By providing physical, spiritu- al and educa- tional help to these children, he offers them hope where there is no hope for a better fu- ture," Melanie Birch noted. "His work is very effective in changing their lives and is worthy of support. After all, it was Pastor Luis who brought Elizabeth to us in the first place," she said. A group of Cape Region people traveled recently to Nicaragua to minister to the children of the region, hosted by Pastor Luis Almondoz (left), a minister formerly of Rehoboth Beach who is in the process of establishing a ranch to provide income for the church and school he is hoping to build. While the group was there, they met a young girl desperately in need of a neurological operation and they are in the process of trying to raise the funds for hospitalization and other ex- penses. The group shown includes (back row, l-r) Jonathan Ross and his father, Pastor Gary Ross of Midway Assembly of God; (front) with Pastor Almondoz (far right) are, l-r, Sharon Korweck of Milton, David Birch, D.O., who has a practice in Rehoboth Beach, andMelanie Birch, R.N. The Birches hope to transport Anyone wishing to donate to- Elizabeth to the United States as ward Elizabeth's operation or The quickly as possible "and we'd ap- Hope of His Calling may contact preciate any help that's out there," Pastor Ross at Midway Assembly she added, of God, 645-9643. Swimmers: take precautions against disabling condition Swimming places tremendous that swimmers perform, the arm during the swimming Consulting a swimming coach the injury is possible by maintain- pressure on the shoulder joint and The shoulder jolt is the most stroke. The shoulder joint space is who specializes in stroke mechan- ing good flexibility, strength and may lead to chronic pain in the freely movable (mlobile) joint in actually compromised, causing ics can help with proper stroke proper mechanics. shoulder.. This condition is called swimmer's shoulder. The term was first described in literature by John Kennedy, M.D. It refers to pain located in the an- terior portion of the shoulder and involves the supraspinatus muscle and the long head of the biceps muscle. Shoulder pain is the most dis- abling problem of not only com- petitive swimmers but also recre- ational swimmers. R. H. Dominguez reported in "Physician and Sports Medicine" that up to 50 percent of all com- petitive swimmers experience some type of shoulder pain in their careers. A large part of this is duo to the repetitive arm motion the body. Because  ty, the shoulder joint It is formed by of the humerus, and.the scapula, or: Stability of the sh provided by musck ligaments. The two in swimmer's sho supraspinatus and 1 biceps brachii. Swimmer's she caused by friction of the supraspinatu of the biceps muse tier joint. This impingeme der joint is cause, forces and an in ff s .oh mobili- not a stable e articulation le upper arm, ihoulder blade. 3ulder joint is s, tendons and most involved alders are the mg head of the ulder pain is r impingement and long head e in the shoul- t of the shoul- by excessive lrd motion of muscles and other structures to become inflamed, swollen and painful. Most swimmers will complain of pain in the anterior portion of the shoulder. This pain will usual- ly be worse with activities but may occur after swimming or at night. If the condition becomes chronic, weakness of the shoulder muscles may occur. Biomechanics can play an im- portant role in reducing swim- mer's shoulders. Proper stroke techniques and trunk positioning can help de- crease the forces and increase shoulder joint space, thus reduc- ing friction and impingement of the shoulder. techniques This could be the most important factor in reducing swimmer's shoulder. For those who suspect they may have swimxner's shoulder, it is important to have a physician evaluate them immediately before the condition becomes chronic. Treatment usually consists of rest, anti-inflammatory medication and possibly physical therapy to re- store function. Returning to activity is based on the following criteria: pain free movement of the shoulder, full shoulder strength and endurance, and proper stroke technique. In summary, swimmer's shoul- der can lead to a very painful and disabling condition. Prevention of HEALTH TOPICS ROBERT CAIRO Robert Cairo is a Hcensed physical therapist at Tidewa- tel" Physical Therapy.