Category: Patient Stories

Heather McNamara: A delicate situation

Heather and Ryan McNamara already had two beautiful girls — Ellie who was four and Abby who was two. Both children were born at St. Clair Hospital, and both times, labor and delivery were normal. When Heather became pregnant with a third child, the couple was excited. The new baby was going to be a little boy. They decided to name him Patrick.

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Jennifer Boal: A challenging three days

When Jennifer “Jenn” Boal wanted to have a second child, she knew exactly who she wanted her doctor to be and where she wanted to deliver. Jenn and her husband, Ryan, had had their first child, Conner, with St. Clair Hospital OB/GYN Paul M. Zubritzky, M.D. The Mt. Lebanon couple had struggled with fertility and Dr. Zubritzky had helped them conceive through medication. “You’re not just a patient with Dr. Zubritzky. You’re like part of his family,” says Jenn. “He listens to what you have to say. His medical knowledge and skill give you the confidence you need as a patient struggling with a medical issue.”

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John: Overcoming severe depression

For John, mornings used to begin with the cheery sounds of his little daughter awakening and bounding down the hall to greet the day and her parents. It was a daily, joyful ritual that gave each day an upbeat beginning, and John looked forward to it. But when he began falling into a deep depression, and his days became dark and difficult, those sounds took on a different meaning and he found himself dreading them. Another day meant facing more pain and anguish, trying to function, and feeling hopeless.

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Jane: Treating bipolar depression with ECT.

Hollywood has given the world a false and frightening image of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), once known as shock treatments, in movies such as “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” and “The Snake Pit.” These inaccurate depictions, says St. Clair Hospital psychiatrist Kenneth von der Porten, M.D., have done a disservice to psychiatric treatment and to patients who may benefit from ECT.

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