Providence doctors will make a house call to LO
by: Vern Uyetake, 
Dr. Kent Williamson, a vascular surgeon for Providence Health System, will lead a discussion Tuesday at the Lakewood Center for the Arts on “Common Vascular Diseases Treated with Uncommon Technology.” Tuesday’s lecture will be the first of three during March by Providence doctors.

Starting Tuesday, the Lakewood Center for the Arts will host an impressive series of three lectures as doctors from Providence Health System will speak on some of the most prevalent health care topics that exist today.

The lectures will be held next Tuesday plus March 12 and 20, and will cover vascular disease and treatments, neurological disorders and cancer care.

'Each of the presentations will give an overview of how Providence is taking unique steps to integrate research and technology to help our patients,' said Dave Underriner, chief executive for Portland Services for Providence.

Tom Lasley, a foundation board member at Providence and a board member at the Lakewood Center, facilitated the arrangement for the event and organizers feel it is an appropriate match.

'We know that we have patients and physicians who live in Lake Oswego, making this an ideal location to share this information,' Underriner said.

All of the lectures begin at 7 p.m. and are free and open to the public. They will feature some of the top physicians in the region in their respective fields.

'These physicians are experts and seek opportunities to heighten awareness about new advancements,' Underriner said.

The series' first lecture, taking place Tuesday, is titled: 'Common Vascular Diseases Treated with Uncommon Technology.'

Kent Williamson, M.D., a vascular surgeon who has been with Providence for six years, will speak about vascular disease, one of the leading causes of death in the United States.

Vascular disease is often referred to as a 'silent killer' but recent advancements have been made in how doctors are able to treat these diseases such as abdominal aortic aneurysm, peripheral artery disease, carotid artery disease and stroke.

'I've done various community lectures before about different aspects of vascular disease. This one will be more comprehensive and boil down information to the bare essentials that people can easily understand,' Williamson said.

Williamson said that a high percentage of deaths caused by vascular disease are preventable. For instance, individuals who smoke are four times more likely to die due to a heart attack or stroke.

'And for people who already have diabetes or hypertension, it's like adding gasoline to a fire,' Williamson said.

Williamson also stressed the importance of exercise and limiting the intake of saturated fats and mentioned that simply being given the proper medications can reduce the chances of vascular disease by 30 percent.

'We want to generate interest in the community and help more people be proactive in regard to their health,' Williamson said.

He will also highlight new advancements in the treatment of vascular disease, which allow doctors to treat more problems with fewer open operations.

Overall, Williamson is excited about all three lectures and feels that the information given could help save lives.

'I think this series can have a significant impact. There is a lot of great information,' Williamson said.

On March 12, Drs. Tom Lorish, Stanley Cohan and Todd Kuether will talk about 'Medicine's Next Great Frontier … The Brain.' New technology and answers for people dealing with diseases such as stroke, epilepsy, ALS, Alzheimer's and Multiple Sclerosis will be highlighted.

Finally, on March 20, Drs. John Handy and Walter Urba will give a lecture on 'Advancing Cancer Care' in which new treatment options will be discussed.

Doors for all three lectures will open at 6:30 p.m. and light refreshments will follow. Seating is limited and tickets should be secured in advance. For more information, call the Lakewood Center at 503-635-3901 or order online at The Lakewood Center for the Arts is located at 368 State St. in Lake Oswego.

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