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Cape Gazette
Lewes, Delaware
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October 10, 1997     Cape Gazette
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October 10, 1997
 

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CAPE GAZETTE, Friday, October 10 - October 16, 1997- 41 Physician recommends attention to fall conditions By Kerry Kester With the rapid development of the Cape Region, a shortage of family practitioners has made it difficult for some people moving into the area to find a doctor. Steven Berkowitz, D.O., is a physician whose interest is in meeting patient needs. Berkowitz has been involved in healthcare for approximatley 30 years. Recently, for the third time, he changed his field of inter- est in an attempt to meet the grow- ing need for family doctors. His career began in pharmacology in the i 960s. In the 1970s, he earned a degree in osteopathic medicine and went into to the field of anes- thesiology. This past summer, after return- ing to school for his residency in family practice, Berkowitz earned his licensure for family practice. "I used to do a little family prac- tice when I was in Wilmington," said Berkowitz, who said that when he first attended medical school he was torn between his in- terest in anesthesiology and fami- ly practice. Developing a personal relation- ship with patients is important to Berkowitz. "I just try to be an old-fashioned doctor," he said. "I like to keep it not on a technical level. I like to speak plainly to the patients so they can understand what is happening." Being avail- able to patients is also important to him, he said. Berkowitz treats patients from two years old and older, and he treats patients in nursing homes who often need physicians to go to them, rather than leave the fa- cility for their doctor's visits. Like most family doctors, he prefers treating all the members of a family. "You know their social make-up, their problems, and you can talk to them more easily and more knowledably," he said. "With family practice, people come to you with the problems of living, and it's easier if you know the family makeup." As fall gains momentum, Berkowitz said there are two healthcare issues facing many people: allergies and flu shots. Allergies, he said, can cause seri- ous health problems and should not be ignored. Over-the-couter remedies work well for many peo- ple, but "some patients need physician attention," said Berkowitz. During the fall, he said, people are exposed to leaves, molds, yeasts and fungi to which they may be allergic. "People tend to bring more things in the house for decorations, for example," he said, noting dried floral or corn stalk arrangements, etc. "These )racticing family medicine Steven Berkowitz, M.D., is now in the Cape Region. He is shown with his wife, Andrea, who manages his office. FREE ANONYMOUS HIV TESTS often are allergy-producing items." Symptoms usually include itchy eyes, runny noses, hoarseness or a scratchy throat. "Sometimes peo- ple get itching in their ears," he said. If people try to alleviate symp- toms with over-the-counter reme- dies and do not see an improve- ment, then they may need to con- sult a physician, because their problems may need special treat- ment. "Allergies can trigger asthma attacks," he said. With some peo- ple, it is important for a complete diagnosis to rule out other or more serious illnesses. The fall season is also the time when people decide whether to get flu shots. "It's up to the pa- tient, but people over 65, people with chronic diseases like dia- betes, heart disease or who are HIV positive, they should have a flu shot," said Berkowitz. Chil- dren, he said, don't need the shots unless they have chronic mal- adies. Flu shots stimulate the antibody system, he said. Most people do not have reactions to the shots, he said, but even those who do still gain protection from the shots. Continued on page 42 Don't Risk Your Life To Lose Weight.. Lose it the A Thermoganic Weight Management Program recommended by doctors and nutritionists Specializing in Vascular, Oncologic, Thoracic and General Surgery 424 Savannah Road, Lewes, Delaware 19958 (302) 645-3712 550 S. Dupont Highway, Suite F, Milford, Delaware 19963 (302) 424-7781