Bill, nearly 50 years old, was a successful businessman until the loss of his job and his accompanying health benefits left him angry and depressed. When his health began to deteriorate – shingles, chest pain, and a sudden unexplained weight loss – he grew frightened, then hostile and demanding. Although he did not feel he belonged at a clinic for low-income people, he had no other recourse. Bill was diagnosed with an enlarged thyroid, for which he received medication, and he had surgery for an inguinal hernia. Grateful for his care and relieved that he did not have cancer as he feared, Bill is a totally different man now, calm and cheerful.
Alicia, a good student at a local technical school, but with a mouthful of broken and decayed teeth, had no hope of finding a decent job. All 26 teeth were extracted and she received full dentures. She is now at work in the bookkeeping office of a major Topeka company, supporting herself and her two children.
Katie was a preschooler with bottle caries. Her teeth were so bad she could hardly chew. The dentist extracted 14 baby teeth and placed space maintainers to keep her other teeth from shifting out of position. The staff now works to educate Katie’s young mother about the importance of nutrition for the children’s dental health.
Jim, 41 and a cook at a local restaurant, believes that if it were not for the Marian Clinic, he might not be alive today. Here he discovered that he was suffering from high blood pressure, diabetes and sleep apnea, each condition a potential killer. He was immediately given a proper diet and medication, and arrangements were made for him to attend a sleep clinic. There he was provided with the use of a CPAP machine that enabled him to get his first full nights of sleep in years. With his health problems under control, he has gone on to a better work opportunity and now has health insurance benefits.
Megan, 28 years old, suffered from activity induced asthma, insomnia, depression and panic attacks. She was tearful and fearful, unable to handle ordinary life, when she first came to the Clinic. Under the care of a volunteer physician who is also a psychiatrist, she learned to accept the recommendations of her doctor for medications and therapy. With Dr. Carol Padilla’s help, Megan has achieved a confidence she never had before.
In today’s economy and because Shawnee County is home to many like Bill, Alicia, Katie, Jim and Megan, Marian Clinic is sorely needed.