Vein viewing easier thanks to Bras for the Cause

9/26/2016

The Monday and Tuesday before Bras for the Cause, volunteers sit at Landon Winery waiting to catalog the entries as they arrive. Each year, they discuss how the bras are the best yet while wondering how bra-makers manage to find creative uses for new materials year after year. Just like the makers of the bras, each Bras for the Cause season finds organizers working hard to find a new way to fight back against cancer. When the big night is finally over, organizers begin the behind-the-scenes work of identifying a new project to benefit from the generosity of sponsors, bra designers, and voters.

With a local cancer treatment facility housed at Hunt Regional Medical Center, there is no shortage of opportunities to provide community assistance. The need is always there. But finding tangible uses for funding requires creativity. From last year’s UV sterilization units (lovingly dubbed “germ zapping robots”) to the Tubby Adkisson Mobile Mammography Coach, the money raised at Bras for Cause is always used locally to meet the needs of women and men fighting cancer in Hunt County.

This year’s event will help to fund vein finding units for the Lou and Jack Finney Cancer Center. Vein viewing technology makes finding veins easier and prevents numerous attempts on patients who have difficult veins or other problems with IVs and blood draws.

Similar units are currently used in Hunt Regional’s emergency departments and benefit both patients and medical staff.

“For patients, it means hard sticks are much more likely to successfully get an IV on the first try,” says emergency department director Kim Mulder, RN.

“It can mean less attempts per patient, and for new IV starters, it gives both the patients and the staff a boost of confidence,” she said.

Kim Saenz, director of Hunt Regional Emergency Medical Centers at Commerce and Quinlan, says that being able to clearly see the veins prevents anxiety for patients who may have longstanding histories with vein problems.

“Our viewer was useful just recently in Quinlan for a patient that was undergoing an outpatient CT before a surgery,” said Saenz.

“She had challenging veins, but thanks to the help of the vein viewing unit, the staff was able to get the IV so she could complete her diagnostic test,” she said.

Cancer patients endure many medical procedures and plenty of sticks. Between chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, port insertion and removal, and lab testing, needles are an unfortunate part of virtually every component of treatment. With the addition of the vein finding units, Bras for the Cause organizers hope to ease some of the discomfort.

One of the best parts of Bras for the Cause is that you don’t have to be a medical professional or a member of a special group to be a part of the cause. Any person from any age group can enter a bra in the contest. It is free to enter a bra, and bra-makers can enter on their own or with a group of co-workers or friends. Votes for your favorite bra are only $1 each, making it possible to contribute at any level.

To learn more about Bras for the Cause and how to participate, visit www.B4TCGreenville.com or call 903-408-1060.

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