Family Medicine

Family medicine at Winneshiek Medical Center specializes in one very important thing: you and your family. Family medicine, also called primary care, is provided by Mayo Clinic Health System physicians, physician assistants and advanced registered nurse practitioners.

It makes sense to establish a regular relationship with a family medicine doctor so we can advise you on healthy ways to avoid cardiovascular problems, degenerative diseases and preventable cancers. We can even help you change behaviors to reduce stress and improve your family’s nutrition.

Our entire team of family medicine providers has extensive training in everything from obstetrics and pediatrics to ophthalmology, cardiology, sports medicine and geriatric medicine.

We recommend that you select a primary care provider for your ongoing care. Your personal family health care provider allows for continuity of care and knows when to refer you for specialized medical services should the need arise.

Dr. Svestka and patient

Meet Our Team

Athletic Physicals

Your family’s health is our top priority, that’s why we suggest well child checks when your child needs an athletic, college, or camp physical form signed by a doctor.

Well child checks are more than a screening, they are comprehensive exams which address your child’s individual needs and conditions, including updating immunizations, along with age-appropriate wellness education – AND your doctor will complete any required athletic, college, or camp physical forms.

Most well child checks are covered by insurance. Contact your insurance carrier for details.

Free Athletic Training Assessment

When your well child check includes a request for filling out an athletic physical form, a FREE athletic training assessment provided by WMC athletic trainers is included.  The assessment covers:

  • Joint flexibility and strength
  • Posture
  • Joint stability
  • Injury history review
  • Information on strength and conditioning

The assessment will follow the well child/athletic physical appointment and take approximately 10-15 minutes.

Schedule an appointment

To schedule a well child check to include athletic, college, or camp physical forms, call Winneshiek Medical Center

  • Decorah Clinic at 563-382-2911
  • Ossian Clinic at 563-532-9500 (athletic training assessment must be scheduled in Decorah)
  • Mabel Clinic at 507-493-5115 (athletic training assessment must be scheduled in Decorah)

Please bring Iowa or Minnesota athletic physical forms to bring to your appointment.

If the student is under 18 years of age, and a parent will not be accompanying the student, consent by the parent will need to be given.  This can be done by phone or a signed note sent with the student.

Preventive Tests & Screenings

Certain preventive measures help maintain good health. Your primary care provider may suggest other guidelines based on your personal or family health history.

Blood Pressure Check

Blood pressure should be measured at least every two years for adults with blood pressure less then 120/80 and more often if blood pressure is higher.

Cervical Pap Smear

Women should have a Pap Smear beginning at age 21.  Pap Smears should be repeated every three years until age 65.

Childhood Immunizations

All children should have vaccinations started in infancy.  Discuss these with your child’s health care provider.

Cholesterol Test

Cholesterol testing should begin by age 35 for men and age 45 for women. Tests should be repeated every five years, or sooner depending on your family history.

Colon Examination

Adults age 50 and older should have a colon examination every five years.

Influenza Vaccination

People age 50 and older, adults and children with chronic health conditions, and those in high risk occupations (such as day care and health care) should receive an annual influenza (flu) vaccination during the autumn or winter months.

Mammogram/Breast Examination

Women age 40 and older should have a mammogram every year.

Osteoporosis Screening

Women age 65 and older should be screened for osteoporosis, or sooner depending on your personal risk factors for osteoporosis.

Pneumococcal (pneumonia) Vaccination

People age 65 and older and adults and children with chronic health conditions should be vaccinated for pneumonia. A booster is needed if the first vaccination occurred before age 65 and more than five years ago.

Tetanus Vaccination Booster

Adults should receive a tetanus/diphtheria vaccination booster every 10 years or as suggested by a health care provider.

Tobacco

Do not use tobacco. If you use tobacco, ask your health care provider about resources to help you stop. Avoid exposure to secondhand smoke.  Other blood work, cardiogram, chest X-ray and urinalysis are not included in a routine preventive screening.

Medication Safety

Medication safety or medication reconciliation is the process of tracking all your medications to avoid potential drug-to-drug interactions or duplications.  For example, did you know aspirin and Echinacea effects how fast your blood clots? If physician prescribes an anticoagulant (such as Warfarin or Comadin) your health could be at risk if the physician is unaware that you are taking aspirin or Echinacea on a regular basis.

When it comes to managing your medications, you are the only person who has complete information on the medications, as well as any vitamins, supplements or herbal remedies you may be taking.

You should keep an up-to-date list that includes:

  • Prescribed medication
  • Over-the-counter medications (such as aspirin, Tylenol, stool softeners, cough medicine, Tums, etc.)
  • Vitamins
  • Herbal supplements

Each item should include the dosage and frequency that you take them.

How does your doctor use your medication reconciliation or medication safety list:

  • Before prescribing medication, the list is reviewed to assure there are no potential drug-drug interactions or duplications.
  • When you describe or exhibit symptoms, the list is reviewed to determine if your symptoms may be related to something you are taking.
  • At each clinic visit, your doctor or provider reviews the list to determine if the medications taken are still needed.
  • When you receive hospital services, whether emergency or planned, the list is used to assure your medication regimen is not interrupted.
  • By reviewing the list with you, your health care provider can clarify any medication questions that you have.

For more information contact 563-382-2911 or review your medications with your doctor.

The Importance of a Colorful Diet

Pack your plate full of color and boost your daily intake of important, and often overlooked, nutrients.

Colorful foods, which are generally fruits and vegetables, contain many of the vitamins and antioxidants we need – with few calories. Along with maintaining good health, the nutrients in vegetables and fruits work together to protect against cancer, heart disease, vision loss, hypertension and other diseases. Increasing fruits and vegetables in your diet is a great step to improve your health.

Red fruits and vegetables

Red fruits and vegetables protect our hearts. Red color in most fruits and vegetables contain antioxidants that reduce the risk of developing atherosclerosis, hypertension and high cholesterol. They also lower the risk of developing different types of cancer, including prostate cancer and protect against heart diseases and improve brain function.

Red Vegetables: tomatoes, radishes, red cabbage, beets

Red Fruits: red grapes, strawberries, watermelon, cherries, raspberries, pomegranates, cranberries, red apples

Blue and purple fruits and vegetables

Blue and purple fruits and vegetables help prevent heart disease, stroke and cancer. Blue and purple fruits and vegetables are very important for your memory and promote healthy aging. This food also protects urinary tract health and regulates healthy digestion.

Blue and Purple Vegetables: eggplant, purple cabbage, purple potatoes

Blue and Purple Fruits: blackberries, blueberries, purple grapes, plums, raisins, figs

Orange and yellow fruits and vegetables

Orange and yellow fruits and vegetables are packed with nutrients that are known to protect your nervous system promote eye health and prevent heart diseases. They also play an important role in maintaining skin health, boosting your immune system and helping build strong bones.

Orange and Yellow Vegetables: carrots, pumpkin, sweet corn, sweet potato, yellow pepper, yellow tomatoes

Orange and Yellow Fruits: yellow apples, apricots, oranges, grapefruit, peaches, mangoes, papaya, pears, pineapple

Green fruits and vegetables

Green fruits and vegetables protect your eye health, lowering the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration. Green leafy vegetables also contain folic acid which is very important for pregnant women as it reduces the risk that their baby will develop a birth defect. The essential nutrients found in green vegetables and fruits protect you from cancer and high levels of bad cholesterol, regulate digestion and improve immune system functioning.

Green Vegetables: broccoli, spinach, cabbage, lettuce, Brussels sprouts, green beans, cucumbers, zucchini, peas, green pepper

Green Fruits: green apples, kiwi, green grapes, lime, avocado

White fruits and vegetables

White fruits and vegetables contain nutrients known to lower the level of bad cholesterol in your body as well as lower high blood pressure. They also have a great immune boosting effect on your body. Nutrients found in white fruits and vegetables minimize the risk of colon, prostate and breast cancer as well.

White Vegetables: potatoes, onions, mushrooms, cauliflower, turnips

White Fruits: bananas, white nectarines, white peaches, pears

How Much Exercise Do I Need?

Kids (ages 6-17)

Children and adolescents should engage in physical activity 60 minutes (1 hour) or more each day. Talk to your child’s doctor before he or she begins any new exercise program.

  • Aerobic activity should make up most of your child’s 60 or more minutes of physical activity each day. This can include either moderate-intensity aerobic activity, such as brisk walking, or vigorous-intensity activity, such as running. Be sure to include vigorous-intensity aerobic activity on at least 3 days per week.
  • Include muscle strengthening activities, such as gymnastics or push-ups, at least 3 days per week as part of your child’s 60 or more minutes.
  • Include bone strengthening activities, such as jumping rope or running, at least 3 days per week as part of your child’s 60 or more minutes.

Adults (ages 18-64)

Adults need 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activity weekly, or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity aerobic activity weekly, or an equivalent mix of moderate and vigorous intensity exercise each week. Talk to your doctor before you begin any new exercise program.

Determining your intensity:

Moderate:
While performing the activity your breathing and heart rate are noticeably elevated, but you can still carry on a conversation.
Examples: Walking briskly (a 15 minute mile), light yard work, light snow shoveling, actively playing with children, biking at a casual pace.

Vigorous:
Your heart rate is greatly elevated and are breathing too hard and quickly to have a conversation.
Examples: Jogging, swimming laps, cross-country skiing, most other competitive sports (basketball, tennis, etc.)

Older Adults (age 65 and older)

Older adults need 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activity weekly, or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity aerobic activity weekly, or an equivalent mix of moderate and vigorous intensity exercise each week. Talk to your doctor before you begin any new exercise program.

Determining your intensity:

Moderate:
While performing the activity your breathing and heart rate are noticeably elevated, but you can still carry on a conversation.
Examples: Walking briskly (a 15 minute mile), light yard work, light snow shoveling, actively playing with children, biking at a casual pace.

Vigorous:
Your heart rate is greatly elevated and are breathing too hard and quickly to have a conversation.
Examples: Jogging, swimming laps, cross-country skiing, most other competitive sports (basketball, tennis, etc.)

Your Appointment

Primary care appointments can be made by calling Winneshiek Medical Center at 563-382-2911.  You can also request an appointment through MyChart.

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