April Meeting Recap: “Asthma! And Asthma.”

Saturday’s meeting of the Ladder was all about asthma – or as medical scholar Renee put it: “Asthma! And Asthma.” Punctuating asthma with both a “!” and “.” was to teach us about asthma not only as an acute condition which needs to be addressed immediately when it occurs (!!!!!), but also as a condition which medical folks can help you control and manage to reduce the !!!!! kinds of asthma incidents.

Asthma! And Asthma.

Asthma! And Asthma.

We learned that asthma describes an overreaction of the immune system where airways in the lungs (bronchioles) get inflammed, causing them to narrow and over-produce mucus (aka “lung snot!”) – making it really hard to breathe. Asthma can be caused by exposure over time to things that irritate the sensitive lining of the lungs, making them hypersensitive to what are called “triggers” such as pollen, pollution, cigarette smoke and pets, to name a few.

Here medical scholar Toporis demonstrates his understanding of the difference between healthy bronchioles and bronchioles that are inflammed and swollen:

ToporisRenee

Healthy vs. inflammed bronchioles

To help us all get a handle on normal lung function, medical scholar Andie provided balloons to demonstrate a simple but effective way of visualizing how much air the lungs can hold:

Measuring lung capacity

Measuring lung capacity

Showing how useful technology and computers are in giving medical professionals tools to help diagnose conditions like asthma, medical scholars Andie and Renard demonstrate the use of spirometry to measure lung capacity and flow of breathing:

Spirometry

Spirometry

We also learned about the sleuthing and knowledge that medical professionals use to figure out whether a patient who comes in for help with lung problems is experiencing asthma, some other condition (like pneumonia), or maybe even both at once:

Diagnosing asthma

Diagnosing asthma

Back to that notion of “Asthma! And Asthma,” we learned about types of medicines like rescue inhalers and Epipens that can be used to treat severe asthma when it happens (!!!!!), as well as asthma medications called controllers that are taken daily to keep inflammation down and airways open to keep severe asthma attacks from happening as often.

Can’t believe we can cram so much fun AND learning into just a couple of hours? See for yourself and join us for next month’s meeting of the Ladder – a Society of Medical Scholars ages 9 to 99. Meetings are the second Saturday of every month and open to anyone and everyone. You’ll have a lot of fun, get a free lunch, and probably even learn something in the process! The next meeting is May 10th at the UROC building (2001 Plymouth Ave N) in North Minneapolis.

“Lift as you Climb, Build as you Grow”

 

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Next Meeting of The Ladder – April 12th: Asthma

At a previous gathering of The Ladder, we learned all about the lungs. Maybe you’ve heard of asthma – a condition that keeps the lungs from functioning as awesomely as they should.

Dealing with asthma

At April’s meeting of the Ladder we’ll learn specifically about asthma and how it affects lungs and breathing: what causes it, how to diagnose it, and how doctors, nurses and other medical helpers can help those with asthma treat and manage it.

So bring bring your lungs, yourself and a friend to the next opportunity for medical fun and learning on Saturday April 12th at 12:30pm at the UROC building (2001 Plymouth Ave N, Minneapolis) – lunch will be provided! The UROC building is reachable by Metro Transit bus routes 19, 32 & 7.

Have a bulletin board or wall-space for info-posting? Print this off and post!

The Ladder is a Society of Medical Scholars ages 9 to 99. Meetings are every second Saturday of the month.

A Scholar Reads,
A Scholar Listens,
A Scholar Teaches and,
A Scholar Learns.

Service Learning, Leadership Development, and Progressive Mentorship

“Lift as you Climb, Build as you Grow”

 

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March Meeting Recap: Dentistry and Dental Health!

We were super fortunate to have some awesome guest scholars at the March meeting of the Ladder: students from the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry!

Dentistry students overseeing Ladder scholars making dental impressions

University of Minnesota dentistry students overseeing Ladder scholars making dental impressions

After making use of our mouths to eat lunch and introduce ourselves to one another, our dentistry guest scholars taught us about the importance of dental health and demonstrated a variety of ways to keep our mouths healthy.

Medical Scholar Halima bravely demonstrates using dye on teeth to observe areas where plaque is concentrated that may need a little extra brushing:

Using dye to observe plaque

Using dye to observe plaque

Medical scholars Ashawna and Stephen pose with the coffee/tea/soda-soaked shell-on eggs they’ve been brushing with toothbrushes and toothpaste as a demonstration of how stains on teeth can be decreased or even prevented (to some degree) by being a dedicated teeth-brusher:

Medical scholars brushing stained "teeth" (eggs!)

Medical scholars brushing stained “teeth” (eggs!)

Our medical scholars each had the opportunity to make dental impressions using models of teeth sets, Jeltrate (a mix that includes alginate, a sort of jelly/gel type substance found in seaweed), metal impression plates, and water. A close-up view of the (awesomely messy) undertaking of making dental impressions:

Making an impression!

Making an impression!

Our dentistry scholars not only taught us a lot about dental health, but they provided us a lot of fun in the process.

You too can be a part of the learning and fun every month at The Ladder – a Society of Medical Scholars ages 9 to 99. Meetings are the second Saturday of every month and open to anyone and everyone. You’ll have a lot of fun, get a free lunch, and probably even learn something in the process! The next meeting is April 12th at the UROC building (2001 Plymouth Ave N) in North Minneapolis.

“Lift as you Climb, Build as you Grow”

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Next Ladder Meeting – March 8th: Dentistry!

You have a great smile!

girlSmile

It takes work to keep that smile great: at the next meeting of the Ladder we’ll learn about the medical practice of dentistry – which is not only all about keeping smiles looking awesome, but keeping everything in and around the mouth healthy and working right.

Young-boy-brushing-his-te-007

We’ll find out what kinds of careers are possible in dentistry, and what it takes to pursue those careers.

dental_clinic

So bring bring your teeth, yourself and a friend to the next opportunity for medical fun and learning on Saturday March 8th at 12:30pm at the UROC building (2001 Plymouth Ave N, Minneapolis) – lunch will be provided!The UROC building is reachable by Metro Transit bus routes 19, 32 & 7.

Have a bulletin board or wall-space for info-posting? Print this off and post!

The Ladder is a Society of Medical Scholars ages 9 to 99. Meetings are every second Saturday of the month.

A Scholar Reads,
A Scholar Listens,
A Scholar Teaches and,
A Scholar Learns.

Service Learning, Leadership Development, and Progressive Mentorship

“Lift as you Climb, Build as you Grow”

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February Meeting Recap: Hearing and the Ear!

At February’s meeting of The Ladder, we learned all about hearing and ears: inner and outer parts of the ear, how sound travels through our ears so we can hear it, how to find out if something’s wrong in an ear, and how to see inside an ear.

At one station medical scholars Stephen and Ashawna tell medical scholar Kacia what they’ve learned about anatomy of the ear and how sound travels through the ear:

Learning how sounds travel through the ear

Learning how sounds travel through the ear

At another station focused on diagnosing problems in the ear, medical scholar Ahmed points out which photo shows a normal ear canal, and which photo displays an ear canal with a benign (aka mostly harmless) osteoma (a bony or cartilage growth):

Diagnosing an osteoma of the external auditory canal

Diagnosing an osteoma of the external auditory canal

Medical scholars Ashawna and Halima demonstrate how hearing tests are conducted:

Hearing test demostration

Hearing test demostration

Medical scholars learn how to use an otoscope to view the external auditory canal and ear drum (aka tympanic membrane):

Learning to use otoscopes

Learning to use an otoscope

Medical scholars Ashawna and Stephen team up to demonstrate how a tuning folk can be used to test hearing function as well:

Is this for real? Sure is.

Is this for real? Sure is.

Medical Scholar Renee taught us about the many different health care professionals (any of which you could be!) who help diagnose and fix problems with your ears:

You can be a part of the learning and fun every month at The Ladder – a Society of Medical Scholars ages 9 to 99. Meetings are the second Saturday of every month and open to anyone and everyone. You’ll have a lot of fun, get a free lunch, and probably even learn something in the process! The next meeting (on dentistry!) is March 8th at the UROC building (2001 Plymouth Ave N) in North Minneapolis.

“Lift as you Climb, Build as you Grow”

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Next Ladder Meeting February 8th: Hearing and Ears!

The next meeting of The Ladder is in just a few days – Saturday February 8th – on the topic of ears and hearing! Probably won’t take you long to think of what your ears do for you and why they can be useful; maybe you even know someone who gets along just fine without hearing at all.

photo credit: sfgate.com

photo credit: sfgate.com

At Saturday’s meeting of The Ladder, we’ll talk about how our ears and hearing work, important parts of ears and how to take care of them, and the kinds of tests and medicines that doctors and nurses can use when someone’s ears aren’t working right.

So bring bring your ears, yourself and a friend to the next opportunity for medical fun and learning on Saturday February 8th at 12:30pm at the UROC building (2001 Plymouth Ave N, Minneapolis) – lunch will be provided!The UROC building is reachable by Metro Transit bus routes 19, 32 & 7.

photo credit: startribune.com

photo credit: startribune.com

Have a bulletin board or wall-space for info-posting? Print this off and post!

The Ladder is a Society of Medical Scholars ages 9 to 99. Meetings are every second Saturday of the month.

A Scholar Reads,
A Scholar Listens,
A Scholar Teaches and,
A Scholar Learns.

Service Learning, Leadership Development, and Progressive Mentorship

“Lift as you Climb, Build as you Grow”

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January 11th 2014, next Metting of The Ladder!

davidOlsonChristopher

Percussing a patient's abdomen.

Percussing a patient’s abdomen.

As always come join us and bring a friend to the next opportunity for medical fun and learning on Saturday January 11th at 12:30pm at the UROC building (2001 Plymouth Ave N, Minneapolis) – lunch will be provided!The UROC building is reachable by Metro Transit bus routes 19, 32 & 7.

The Second Saturday of each month, Meetings are the Gatherings and the Foundation to Build Strong Bonds. Fourth grade, through Middle school, to High school, College, Medical school, Resident and Intern Physicians all the way to Attending Physicians…all members of The Ladder. http://theladdermn.org/break-it-down-what-does-the-ladder-really-do/

“Lift as you Climb, Build as you Grow”

 

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