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The Examiner 

Naval Hospital Twentynine Palms 

Volume 6, No. 5 

May 1998 

An Award Winning Publication 

China Lake Corpsman Chosen 
as the Top Bluejacket of 1997 

By HM3 Donna Tenney 
Staff Writer 

Chalk another up on the list of 
achievements for HM2(FMF) 
Huben Phillips. Some of you 
may remember him as the Sailor of 
the Quarter for Naval Hospital Twen- 
tynine Palms October-December 
1997. It could be that you may know 
him as the Leading Petty Officer 
(LPO) of the Ambulatory Care Clinic 
and Medical Records Department at 
Branch Medical Clinic China Lake. 

In a recent ceremony sponsored by 
the Indian Wells Valley Council of the 
Navy League, HM2 Phillips was 
awarded the Senior Bluejacket of the 
Year for the Naval Air Warfare Cen- 
ter at China Lake. Along with this 
honor comes many benefits. The 
mayor of the city of Ridgecrest was 
on hand to present the winner with a 
city proclamation and keys to the city. 
The benefits don't stop there. The 
winner was also presented with an 
$1,100 check for his efforts that 
helped him earn this distinguished 

HM2 Phillips was chosen from a 
list of candidates representing various 
commands aboard the base. During 
his acceptance speech, a surprised 
Phillips thanked his chain of com- 


Page 2 I 

HM2 Phillips of Branch Medical 
Clinic China Lake. 

mand, community sponsors, and the 
Navy League. He added, the cash 
award will come in handy and an- 
nounced plans to use it for his wed- 
ding in August. 

Phillips was nominated for this 
award due to his extensive work on 
the base colorguard, his involvement 
in Moral Welfare and Recreation as 
the president of the command recre- 
ation committee for his clinic and his 
outstanding leadership abilities as the 
LPO for the ambulatory care clinic 
and Medical Records Department. 

"We know that this award is well 
earned and we extend our sincerest 
congratulations to HM2 Huben 
Phillips for being selected as the Se- 
nior Bluejacket of the Year for Naval 
Air Warfare Center Weapons Division 
China Lake," said Captain Joan M. 
Huber, Executive Officer, Naval Hos- 
pital Twentynine Palms. 

Newsletter places in Navy-wide contest 

± y r 

aval Hospital Twentynine Palms 
now has another reason to be proud 
of itself. 

The command's newsletter The Ex- 
aminer placed 2nd in the Chief of Na- 

val Information Merit Awards Contest 
in Category E: Newspaper (Magazine 
Format). The Examiner also placed 3rd 
in Category N: Special Achievement in 

See NEWSLETTER on page 4 


Page 3 

Ripped Fuel 


Page 7 I 

Chaplains Corner... 

What Were They Thinking? 

We have all experienced those 
embarrassing moments 
when words have trickled 
out of our mouth that we wished would 
have remained bouncing around in our 
empty cranial regions. It is even more 
devastating when those embarrassing 
mishaps make their way to paper. Be- 
fore the paper goes to press it is always 
a good idea to proof read the "devil" 
out of it. Here are some actual quotes 
from various church bulletins that I 
think you will find entertaining and 
proves this point: 

1. Don't let worry kill you- let the 
church help. 

2. Thursday night potluck supper. 
Prayer and medication to follow. 

who are sick of our church and com- 

4. For those of you who have chil- 
dren and don't know it, we have a nurs- 

ery downstairs. 

5. The rosebud on the altar this 
morning is to announce the birth of 
David Allen Belzer, the sin of Rev. and 
Mrs. Julius Belzer. 

6. This afternoon there will be a 
meeting in the south and north ends of 
the church. Children Will be baptized 
at both ends. 

7. Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. there will 
be an ice cream social. All ladies giv- 
ing milk will please come early. 

8. Wednesday the ladies liturgy will 
meet. Mrs. Johnson will sing "Put me 
in my little bed,"accompanied by the 
pastor. ... . . 

9. Thursday at 5:00 p.m. there will 
be a meeting of the Little Mothers club. 
All ladies wishing to be "Little Moth- 
ers" will meet with the pastor in his 

10. This being Easter Sunday, we 
will ask Mrs. Lewis to come forward 


A Great Doctor 
Dear Captain Kayler, 

I am writing to let you know about 
our experience during the last five 
months with Dr. Richey in the 
Pediatrics department. Dr. Richey is 
the most wonderful military doctor 
that has ever treated our children. 
Our daughter Caitlin, 5, and son 
Connor, 3, both love going to see her. 
Dr. Richey goes out of her way to 
make sure that our children receive 
outstanding medical care. She has 
called after hours and on weekends to 
check up on our children. She is 
responsible for my son finally 
receiving the treatment he needed for 
recurrent ear infections. 

As a parent, often I have experi- 
enced doctors who do not want to 
take the time to answer my questions 
or dismiss me as a worried mother. 
Dr. Richey has always taken the time 
to listen to my concerns and answer 
any questions that I might have. She 
also does not prescribe unnecessary 
medication, which we have experi- 
enced in the past. She always takes 
time to talk to Caitlin and Connor. 


She has even shown me my son's ears 
to make sure that I understand exactly 
what is going on. 

I can't say enough good things 
about her and I hope that she will 
receive the recognition that she 
deserves for being a wonderful 

Yours Sincerely, 
Adrienne P. Downing 

Wonderful Hospital 
Dear Captain Kayler, 
On a recent trip to the emergency 
room, I was diagnosed with pneumo- 
nia. So, I had a 4-day stay in your 
wonderful hospital. 
The care that I received was outstand- 
ing. My profound thanks to the 
emergency room crew, Dr. Cunard 
and the wonderful staff and person- 
nel, nurses, corpsmen, and etc. I 
can't thank each one by name, but to 
all for the utmost professional care 

again. Ihanks. 

Milton Murray 
CWO-2 Retired U.S. Army 

LTD. Dudley, Command Chaplain 
and lay an egg on the alter. 

11. Next Sunday, a special collec- 
tion will be taken to defray the cost of 
the new carpet. All those wishing to 
See CHAPLAIN on page 4 

The EXAMINER Newsletter is an 
authorized publication of Naval 
Hospital, Twentynine Palms, CA 
92278-8250. The views expressed in 
this publication are not necessarily 
those of the Department of the Navy. 

Commanding Officer 


Executive Officer 


Public Affairs Officer/Editor 


Staff Writers 

HM3 Donna Tenney 

HM3 Christina Hunt 

The EXAMINER welcomes your 
comments and suggestions. Dead- 
line for submission of articles is the 
15th of each month for the follow- 
ing month's issue. Any format is 
welcome, however, the preferred 
method of submission is by e-mail 
or by computer disk. The Public 
Affairs e-mail address is: The 
Public Affairs Office telephone 
number is: DSN 957-2362, Comm 
(760) 830-2362, Fax: (760) 830- 

The EXAMINER is printed, un- 
der contract, on 1 00 percent recycled 
paper by Monument Printing, 57832 
Twentynine Palms Hwy., Yucca Val- 
ley, CA 92284. Tel: (760) 365-5655, 
Fax: (760) 365-4936. 

The EXAMINER editor would 
like to thank all those who partici- 

From the Desk of the Command Master Chief 

On the history of the Hospital Corps 

During the time period between 
World War I and World War II, 
the Hospital Corps became one 
of die outstanding corps of military ser- 
vice. Despite a drawdown due to the 
end of the war, there were still numer- 
ous opportunities for Hospital Corps- 
men to excel. In 1927 Nicaragua was 
added to the list of assignments for 
Marines and their Hospital Corpsmen. 
More schools were provided, qualifica- 
tions for advancement in rate were 
raised, and a high degree of technical 
skill and knowledge was expected of 
all members of the Hospital Corps. 

-As the United States entered World 
War II, the Hospital Corps grew from a 
peacetime level of near 4,000 to over 
132,000. This was to meet the huge 
increase in demand for medical care and 
to implement new technologies of the 
time. Corpsmen found themselves serv- 
ing in the forefront of every invasion 
and were involved in every action at 

The war in the Pacific taught many 
lessons. On New Georgia while rush- 
ing between the lines to administer first 
aide to a badly wounded Marine, 
PHM2/c Thaddeus Parker was killed 
instantly by a burst of enemy fire. His 
brave act, a source of inspiration to his 
fellow corpsmen and to the men of his 
company, served, however, to point out 
the importance of training troops to 
crawl back from the lines when 
wounded. On many occasions, men 

only slightly wounded called for help, 
and when their buddies or corpsmen 
when to their aid they too were shot and 
injured or killed. On Iwo Jima the ex- 
periences of the Medical Department 
are typified by the following account. 
"Landing with the troops, immediately 
following the assault group, the Chief 
Pharmacist's Mate was shot in the jaw 
as he stepped out of the landing boat. 
The medical party, carrying seabags 
filled with medical supplies, pushed 
inland some 75 yards and picked a spot 
for their station in an antitank ditch. 
They left some of the bags on the beach 
on that first trip, and when they returned 
to get them, many of the bags had been 
ripped by shell bursts. Boxes of valu- 
able plasma were smashed, but the 
worst blow came when the boat carry- 
ing all the litters was sunk on the way 
in. Wounded men were lying all 
around. It was impossible to stand erect 
on the beach, and the corpsmen crawled 
from casualty to casualty to bandage 
wounds and administer morphine and 

The struggles in the Pacific were not 
the only area that Hospital Corpsmen 
saw action and not all of the time was 
spent in battle, as this account of a 
young Hospital Corpsman describes. 
"Almost every afternoon while on con- 
voy duty in the Atlantic, we corpsmen 
sat in sickbay with our needles and 
thread and scissors. We made the sur- 
gical masks for use in operations. We 

made the glove cases in which the rub- 
ber gloves for operating were put. We 
folded the gauze squares, or "sponges", 
used in operating, and were taught to 
fold the gauze so that all cut edges 
would be inside, and no loose thread 
could get into an incision. We even 
made our own pills. We did not even 
have aspirin tablets onboard. Instead, 
the powders were mixed with a sort of 
spatula on a metal surface. We filled 
the capsules by pressing the two empty 
halves into the powder and then press- 
ing the halves together." 

On 22 January 1943, women were 
first enlisted into the Hospital Corps. 
This action was taken to allow more 
men to be available for combat service. 
The majority of the new enlistees were 
already trained in some facet of medi- 
cal care. On 12 January 1944, the first 
Hospital Corps School for women was 
commissioned at the Naval Hospital, 
Bethesda, MD. The first class consisted 
of 230 enlisted women. 

The role of submarine corpsmen 
developed into one of great importance. 
The most dramatic of their accomplish- 
ments were three incidents where they 
had to perform surgery while sub- 
merged. Pharmacist's Mate First Class 
Wheeler "Johnny" Lipes performed a 
successful appendectomy aboard the 
USS Seadragonon 1 1 September 1942. 
Lipes, who had been a surgical techni- 
cian, used improvised instruments made 
from mess deck utensils and instructed 
assistants as the procedure went on in 
the Officers' Wardroom. PliMl/c Harry 
Roby performed the same act on the 
See HISTORY on page 4 

Naval Hospital Birthday Ball Committee 
Sponsors First Annual Ridge Run in June 

By HM3 Donna Tenney 
Staff Writer 

Are you a runner looking for a 
challenge and you can't seem 
to find one in tliis area? Then 
maybe you're ready for the First An- 
nual Ridge Run to be held at the Ma- 
rine Corps Air Ground Combat Center 
on June 12. 

The Naval Hospital Corps is cel- 
ebrating their 100th birthday this year, 


Continued from page 2 

do something on the new carpet will 

come forward and do so. 

12. The ladies of the church have 
cast off clothing of every kind. They 
can be seen in the church basement Sat- 

13. A bean supper will be held on 
Tuesday evening in the church hall. 
Music will follow. 

On a more serious note, remember 
that the last Monday of this month is 
Memorial Day. It is a day to remember 
all of the soldiers who have died in 
battles upholding the foreign policy of 
the United States, and the obligations 
of the United Nations Charter. 

May God's eternal light be your 
beacon of hope always! 

Newsletter... — 

Continued from page 1 
Print Media for The Examiner Strate- 
gic Plan Edition. 

The Examiner was only entered into 
these two categories this year, and 
judged in some very stiff competition 
with other Navy publications from com- 
mands around the globe. 

This special achievement would not 
have been possible if it weren't for the 
myriad of people who submit articles 
to the newsletter each month... and the 
wondrous achievements of the various 
staff members of this command whose 
stories are told in the pages of The Ex- 
aminer each month. Special recogni- 


and a spectacular celebration is planned. 
In an effort to raise funds to help de- 
fray ticket costs, the Hospital Corps 
Birthday Ball Committee is sponsoring 
a competitive and demanding race ap- 
propriately named the Ridge Run. 

This race is divided into a short dis- 
tance (1.5 miles) category, and a long 
distance (5 miles) category. Long dis- 
tance race will begin at 6:30 a.m., with 
the short distance race to follow at 6:40. 
The start/finish line is at the base stables 
located behind the Naval Hospital and 
takes a strenuous hike back up into the 
desert ridges, guaranteeing an ex- 
tremely challenging run. This is not 
your average early morning jog. 

This race will require that you be 
very well hydrated, and physically and 
mentally prepared. There will be aid 
stations available along the route to pro- 
vide any assistance that may be needed. 

The competition is actually divided 
into several -categories. Two age 


Continued from page 3 
USS Grayback, as did PhMl/c Thomas 
Moore aboard USS Silversides, both in 
December 1942. 

The valor and courage of the corps- 
men throughout the conflict prompted 
Secretary of the Navy, James Forrestal 
to bestow a special "Well Done" Com- 
mendation in 1945 to the Hospital 
Corps. ". . .That others might live, your 

tion also needs to be given to the 
hospital's Management Information 
Department because without their tech- 
nical support in computer hardware and 
software, and fixing all of those "op- 
erator malfunctions" on the Public Af- 
fairs Computer, a quality layout of The 
Examiner would not be possible. 

As part of the folio line... in between 
the volume number and date above, we 
will place the statement "An Award 
Winning Publication" for the next 
year... with some hard work and good 
stories, maybe we can keep that state- 
ment next year. 

groups; under 20 years of age, and over 
20 years of age. Another option is the 
platoon competition consisting of two 
categories. 10-20 people and platoons 
with 20 or more members. 

Cost to enter this event is $ 1 0.00 per 
individual. The price includes a t-shirt, 
or a $2.00 entry fee per person for the 
platoon category. Early entry deadline 
is May 4, but late entries will be ac- 
cepted up to the day of the race at a 
slightly higher entry fee. Day of race 
registration will be available from 5:30- 
6:15 a.m. 

Individual winners will receive med- 
als and platoon winners will receive a 
team trophy. 

Volunteers are needed to assist with 
timing, water handling, and various jobs 
at the aid stations. If interested in help- 
ing or would like more information, 
please contact HM3 Bill Hayes at 830- 
2213/2301 or HM3 Tawnya Swank at 

fellow corpsmen have given their lives; 
889 of them killed or mortally wounded. 
Others died as heroically from diseases 
they were trying to combat. In all, the 
Hospital Corps casualty list contains 
1 724 names, an honor role of special 
distinction because none of them bore 

arms The Hospital Corpsmen 

saved lives on all beaches that the Ma- 
rines stormed You Corpsmen per- 
formed foxhole surgery while shell 
fragments clipped your clothing, shat- 
tered plasma bottles from which you 
poured new life into the wounded, and 
the sniper's bullets were aimed at the 
brassards on your arms." No other in- 
dividual corps, before or since, has been 
so singled out and honored. 

Of the 15 Navy men to received the 
Medal of Honor during World War II, 
seven were Hospital Corpsmen and four 
of those received the Medal for action 
on Iwo Jima. Hospital Corpsmen also 
received 66 Navy Crosses, 465 Silver 
Stars and 982 Bronze Stars. 1 , 1 70 Hos- 
pital Corpsmen gave their lives during 
World War II to save others. 143,826 
combat casualties were treated by 

Hospital Takes Gol d in CG's Volleyball Championships 

BYHM3D. Tenney 
Staff Writer 

The season proved to be a lot of 
ups and downs for the Naval 
Hospital Intramural team. There 
were times that you wondered why they 
lost or how they won. There was a lot 
of evident talent, but sometimes it 
wasn't all there at the same time. Fin- 
ishing the regular season with a 3rd 
place finish, the team never lost confi- 
dence that they could still take the CG 
championship. All they would need to 
do is utilize each person's strengths and 
play like a team. 

That's exactly what they did. In the 
first round they met CSSG-1 and put 
them away with an impressive victory 
that let the other teams know that they 
were there to win. Second round 
brought the 2nd seed team of 1st Tanks 
who were put away in two games and 

sent to the losers bracket. The semifi- 
nal round brought 3rd LAR with it who 
had sent MCCES, the 1st seeded team 
to the losers bracket in an exciting 
match the night before. The team was 
aware that it would be a tough match 
and mentally prepared one another for 
the match ahead. The hospital team 
gave another impressive performance 
putting them away in two games. 

Championship round brought a 
hyper CSSG-1 back for a re-match. The 
first match was an exciting one. It went 
three games and the hospital ended up 
on the losing end. After a half an hour 
break and an intensive warm-up session 
it was time for the championship game. 
Thanks to a lot of cheering, from the 
wonderful fans, the team went into the 
championship game with a winning and 
determined attitude. There were a lot 
of exciting rallies and the two teams 
played an intense match. The team 

pulled together, played their hearts out 
and the fans cheered with excitement. 
The match ended with the taste of sweet 
success. The hospital had come to- 
gether as a team and fed off of each 
other's strengths to claim the base 

Team members include: 
Co-captain/coach: HN Avery (CPD) 
Co-captain: LCDR Larcombe (FPC) 

HM3 Johnson (PT) 

SK3 Nino (Supply) 

HM3 Fregoso(Ortho) 

LT Garcia (MIW) 

HN Peau (MSC) 

HMCM Bettis (CMC) 

HM3 Smith (MH) 

HM2 Barron (OR) 

HM3 Tenney (Peds) 

CPL Aspen Greiy (AAV) 
Congratulations on a job well done 
and a championship well deserved! 

People of the Quarter... 

HM2 Arnold Roach of Branch Medical Clinic, China 
Lake has been selected as Senior Sailor of the Quarter. 

HM3 Dawn Wilson of the Maternal Infant Ward has 
been selected as Junior Sailor of the Quarter. She was 
later selected as MCA GCC JSOO. 



Relaxing addition to fitness program 

By Vera Ando-Winstead 
Bureau of Medicine and Surgery 

After a rough workday, do you 
want a quiet place to unwind? 
Such a haven is nearby-in the 
sauna at your local gym or health club. 

To relieve stress the sauna helps you 
relax. To supplement a fitness program, 
the sauna produces reactions similar to 
mild exercise such as a brisk walk. The 
high heat and low humidity give your 
heart a cardiovascular workout. 

Saunas promote the body's natural 
cleansing through perspiration to main- 
tain clear, healthy skin. Some people 
believe the sauna helps them lose 
weight, but the loss is mostly water. 
When tlie body replenishes water stores, 
the "lost weight" returns. 

"Basically healthy people of all ages 
can enjoy a sauna as long as they exer- 
cise common sense. If you have high 
blood pressure or chronic heart disease 
or suffered a heart attack, you should 
not use the sauna because of the car- 
diovascular strain from the heat," said 
CDR Joseph Moore, MC, head of 
Sports Medicine, Camp Pendleton Na- 
val Hospital and Specialty Leader to the 
Surgeon General for Sports Medicine. 
"Pregnant women should not use tlie 
sauna because it increases the heart's 
workload. Also, high maternal body 
temperature can adversely affect the 

Planning to use the sauna? Here are 
some guidelines: 

1 . If you have special health con- 
cerns (such as diabetes, arteriosclero- 
sis, varicose veins), check with 
your doctor beforehand. 

2. Cool down from a strenuous 
workout before entering the sauna. Your 
heart rate should be normal. 

3. Do not exercise in the sauna. 

4. For safety, use the sauna with a 
health buddy when possible. 

5 . Use tlie sauna on an empty stom- 
ach to avoid indigestion. 

6. Shower before you enter the 
sauna to clean and open your pores. 

7. Wear as little as possible. 

Clothes impede the evaporation of wa- 
ter (sweat) from the skin. 

8. Never wear water-imperme- 
able material, such as rubber suits, 
which can lead to dangerously high 
body temperatures and even death. 

9. Sit or recline on tlie highest 
level you can tolerate; stay in as long 
as you comfortably can (generally 8 to 
1 5 minutes). 

1 0. Cool down quickly in open air 
outside the sauna or under as cool a 
shower as you can handle. 

11. After your heart rate returns to 
normal, you can repeat the heating and 
cooling procedure two or three times. 

12. Most importantly, before, dur- 
ing and after the sauna, drink plenty of 
fluids, especially water. 

As always, heed your body's signals. 
How you feel determines how long you 
remain in the sauna and how long you 
take to cool off. 

If you feel dizzy, nauseated or faint, 
get out of the sauna. Stand up carefully 
and slowly. Walk cautiously as you 
leave the sauna. 

Remember, replace the fluids you 
sweated out; drink plenty of water. 

Used recklessly, the sauna can lead 
to death. However, used correctly, the 
sauna augments an exercise program 
and provides overall health benefits. 
"Many people report physical and men- 
tal relaxation and a sensation of gen- 
eral well being after talcing a sauna," 
said Moore. So, relax, treat yourself to 
tlie sauna-enjoy! 

It's Not Sugar, 

By Kimberly Allen Rowlings 
Bureau of Medicine and Surgery 

Instead of asking how many sugars do 
you take in your coffer or tea, the ques- 
tion could easily be how many Sweet 
N Low or Equal packs do you use? 

Sugar substitutes, often called arti- 
ficial sweeteners or non-nutritives, are 
used more commonly in society. More 
and more soft drinks, foods and desserts 
contain sugar substitutes to satisfy the 
craving for sweets but not calories. 

Artificial sweeteners, saccharin and 
aspartame are appealing because they 
offer a sweet taste but contribute virtu- 
ally no calories. These sugar substitutes 
are 200 to 300 times sweeter than sugar. 
The caloric content of the artificial 
sweeteners is negligible and almost 
non-existent in one teaspoon compared 
with the 20 calories in one teaspoon of 

Although sugar may contain calo- 
ries, it's all natural and causes no side 
effects. "No matter how much sugar 
you take in, if it exceeds your body's 
maintenance needs for calories it can 
be stored as fat," said LT Todd Medley, 
MSC, a registered dietician at Naval 
Medical Center, San Diego. 

but it's Sweet 

Saccharin, used in Sweet N Low 
sugar substitute, has been in use for 
nearly a century. No evidence has been 
linked to human health problems, but 
some laboratory studies have shown an 
increase in bladder tumors in rats that 
have been fed large amounts. The U.S. 
Food and Drug Administration recom- 
mends limiting saccharin use as a table- 
top sweetener. 

Another artificial sweetener, aspar- 
tame, commonly known as Nutrasweet, 
has been available since 1983. The 
name brand Equal uses Nutrasweet. 
Aspartame is closely related to naturally 
occurring body chemicals and is con- 
sidered extremely safe by researchers. 
It can not be used in baked goods, be- 
cause prolonged heat causes it to break 
down. However, aspartame can be used 
with some stove top food preparations. 

According to Medley, the decision 
to use artificial sweeteners will vary 
widi people's taste and their disease 
state. For instance a person suffering 
with diabetes or obesity can benefit 
from using the low-calorie sweetener. 
But a person suffering with an ailment 
that demands an increased need for 
calories may need tlie caloric value that 
sugar offers. 

Sec SWEET on page 7 

Ripped Fuel. . . Friend or Foe? 

By HM3 Christina Hunt 
Staff Writer 

Recently there have been reports 
on the metabolic enhancer 
"Ripped Fuel" regarding sus- 
pected deaths in conjunction with its 
use. Although it is unclear what role 
"Ripped FueF actually played in the 
deaths, it is highly recommended that 
usage of the product discontinue until 
further notice. 

"Ripped Fuel" contains a Chinese 
herbal form of Ma Huang which, ac- 
cording to a recent article in The Los 
Angeles Times, is "described by one 
drug expert as 'an atom away' from il- 
legal methamphetamine." According 
to TwinLab, the manufacturer of 
"Ripped Fuel," this "is another great 
thermogenic product containing ma 
huang (herbal form of ephedrine which 
in some states has already been banned), 
guarana (herbal form of caffeine) I-car- 
nitine, and chromium picolinate." This 
product advertises "Scientifically re- 
searched and tested ingredients... a 
combination proven effective in reduc- 
ing body fat while maintaining lean 
body mass." 

"Ripped Fuel" with its potent con- 
tents, should in all respects be treated 


Continued from page 6 

People suffering from an extremely 
rare genetic disease called phenylketo- 
nuria (PKU) should not use aspartame. 
PKU is an inherited recessive trait that 
is characterized by mental retardation, 
seizures, eczema and mousy odor. 

"Both saccharin and aspartame do 
not affect the blood sugar. But because 
of the warnings associated with saccha- 
rin, Navy dietitians need to assess and 
recommend the appropriate use of all 
sugar substitutes," said Medley. 

Many foods on the market today use 
sugar substitutes to give us the taste we 
love without the calories of sugar. But 
limiting sugar is only one part of build- 
ing healthy eating habits. It is still im- 
portant to eat a variety of low-fat foods, 
including plenty of fresh fruits, veg- 
etables and whole grains. 

as a drug. As a direct result of the ques- 
tionable deaths that may be linked to 
the usage of this and other similar prod- 
ucts, the Food and Drug Administration 
(FDA) has begun an investigation. 
Currently, the product has been re- 
moved from the shelves of the Marine 
Corps Exchange, pending investiga- 
tions into its alleged involvement in 
several deaths. 

This product may lead to high blood 
pressure, heart attacks, strokes and sei- 
zures when taken in excess. One such 
possible victim was a 15-year-old girl 
who took it prior to soccer practice in 

April of this year. She collapsed to 
never regain consciousness before be- 
ing pronounced dead three days later. 
Another death, confirmed to be a direct 
result of the usage of "Ripped Fuel," 
was a 23-year-old graduate student. The 
product caused his heart to beat irregu- 
larly and then stop. This thermogenic 
formula appears to be quite a danger- 
ous addition to a person's diet. 

While the exact involvement of 
"Ripped FiieF is still in question, Na- 
val Hospital Twentynine Palms strongly 
discourages the use of this, and other 
similar products, until further notice. 

Dental Technicians 
Celebrate 50 Years of Service 

By HMCS Mark Hacala 
Bureau of Medicine and Surgery 


Navy Dental Teclinicians celebrated their golden anniversary April 
2. The creation of a separate dental rating was authorized in 

In previous years, dental assistants were Hospital Corpsmen who were 
trained as assistants or prosthetic technicians. Their number grew to over 
1 0,000 in World War II. Dental technicians served admirably during the 
wars in Korea, Vietnam, Lebanon, and the Persian Gulf. One techni- 
cian, Dentahnan Thomas Christensen, earned a posthumous award of 
the Navy Cross for gallantry in Korea. 

Currently, there are 3,021 active and 679 reserve dental technicians. 
They serve in nine Navy enlisted codes including basic technicians, ad- 
vanced teclinicians, dental laboratory teclinicians, surgical technicians 
and Fleet Marine Force technicians, equipment repair personnel, admin- 
istrative technicians, dental hygienists and maxillofacial technicians. 
They are assigned in the United States, outside the continental United 
States, aboard ships, and with the Marines. 

Senior dental technicians have served as command master chiefs of 
surface ships and other non-dental commands. DTC Hazelann K. Teamer 
won one of the Navy's highest accolades with her selection as the Chief 
of Naval Operations 1997 Shore Sailor of the Year. 

Happy Birthday 23rd Dental Company! 
From the Staff at Naval Hospital 
Twentynine Palms 

More Hardchargers . . . 

OB/GYN Clinic 
has been 
selected as 
Junior Civlian 
of the Quarter. 

SCOQ Aldo Amaranto of the Hospital's 
Radiology Department has been named Senior 
Civilian of the Quarter. 

Total Quality Online in the Lab 

By ENS Rodriguez 

Clinical laboratories are one of the most regulated work areas in a health care 

The Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations 
(JCAHO), College of Pathologists (CAP), Food and Drag Administration (FDA) 
and the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB) are just some of the regu- 
latory bodies that can shut down a laboratory for any one of several hundred 
possible violations. 

Consequently, quality control is one of the highest priorities for clinical labo- 
ratories. However, documentation of quality control has traditionally been a te- 
dious and laborious task. 

The laboratory has taken steps to improve the accuracy and cut down on the 
time required to document quality control by using CHCS as its database. HM1 
Domingo Capistrano, the chemistry section supervisor, created quality control 
files for all sections of the laboratory. These files allow the laboratory to accu- 
rately and immediately monitor trends and shifts of test reagents and controls. 
Furthermore, the laboratory can update and print the files with just several key- 
strokes. The reports CHCS generates automatically perform all the complex sta- 
tistical functions that were previously done manually. This dramatically cuts down 
on paper waste and the log books technicians had to painstakingly maintain. The 
quality control files are now linked to corresponding test files that allow the labo- 
ratory to capture quality control workload that was previously unaccounted for. 
Petty Officer Capistrano's efforts now allow the laboratory to more accurately 
plan budgets, forecast staffing and improve the quality of care the command de- 

Volunteer of the Quarter. 

Look for the complete 
story on the People of the 
Quarter in next month 's