Poison Ivy Warning

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Story Updated: Aug 12, 2013

HIGH TEMPERATURES, HIGH HUMIDITY AND LOTS OF RAINE. THAT'S ONE WAY TO DESCRIBE THIS SUMMER! AND ALL OF THE UNUSUAL WEATHER WE'VE EXPERIENCED HAS LED TO A BUMPER CROP OF POISON IVY AND OTHER RASH-PRODUCING PLANTS, ACCORDING TO SOME ALLERGY SPECIALISTS!

THAT'S WHY IT'S MORE IMPORTANT THAN EVER TO TAKE PRECAUTIONS WHEN PLANNING OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES.

HERE ARE SOME TIPS TO HELP MAKE SURE YOUR END OF SUMMER FUN ISN'T RUINED BY ENDLESS ITCHNG!

FIRST, LEARN TO IDENTIFY HIGHLY ALLERGENIC PLANT VINES LIKE POISON IVY, OAK OR SUMAC. ONE EASY RULE TO FOLLOW: LEAVES OF THREE; LET THEM BE.

NEXT, WEAR LONG PANTS, LONG SLEEVES AND SOCKS WHEN PICKNICING OR HIKING IN PARKS, FIELDS AND WOODED AREAS.

TRY TO KEEP YOUR PETS FROM RUNNING THROUGH THESE AREAS, AS WELL. THE PLANT OILS THAT CAUSE REACTIONS CAN STICK TO THEIR FUR, WHICH YOU MAY THEN TOUCH.

ALWAYS WEAR GLOVES WHEN GARDENING OR DOING OTHER YARD WORK.

FINALLY, IF YOU DO COME IN CONTACT WITH A SUSPICIOUS PLANT, WASH YOUR SKIN AND CLOTHING AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE WITHIN 30 MINUTES IS BEST. AND MAKE SURE TO SCRUB UNDER YOUR FINGERNAILS SMALL AMOUNTS OF THE OIL CAN REMAIN THERE FOR DAYS UNLESS YOU WASH IT AWAY.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with news from today that can lead to healthy tomorrows.

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The LOURDES Regional Cancer Center is the area's premier facility dedicated to spiritually based, comprehensive cancer care. Since 1957, the Lourdes Regional Cancer Center has been providing the Southern Tier of New York with outstanding cancer care.

Now, nearly fifty years later, the LOURDES Regional Cancer Center continues that mission. Since 1971, the Lourdes Regional Cancer Center has been accredited as a Community Hospital Comprehensive Cancer Program. Most recently, Lourdes has been awarded the 2008 Commission on Cancer Outstanding Achievement Award by the Commission on Cancer American College of Surgeons. The Award is designed to recognize cancer programs that strive for excellence in providing quality care to cancer patients. Lourdes is one of only 95 facilities in the US to receive this award.

Today, Lourdes is among the largest and most sophisticated community cancer centers in the country. Here within the region's premier facility dedicated to the fight against cancer we've gathered the area's top physicians and oncologists. We've assembled select teams of cancer nurses and specialists and we've brought to the Southern Tier some of the newest weapons to fight cancer.

Pastoral care, nutrition services, and rehabilitation services are also available for both outpatients and inpatients. Lourdes Regional Cancer Center also maintains a link with the National Cancer Institute's (NCI) database. This database provides the latest information on research advances and new treatments, as well as emerging topics on the influence of genetics, environmental factors and lifestyle factors in the development of cancer.

For more information visit www.lourdes.com.