Monday, June 12, 2017

Physician sheds light on Lyme disease

On a visit to Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, Dr. Nevena Zubcevik challenged conventional diagnosis and treatment of tick-borne diseases. She described her findings on Lyme disease diagnosis and treatment, and its effect on the brain, to Martha's Vineyard Hospital physicians and members of the public last week. — Barry Stringfellow

blacklegged tick, also know as the "deer tick"
This past Friday, Dr. Nevena Zubcevik, attending physician at Harvard Medical School and co-director of Dean Center for Tick Borne Illness at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Charlestown (SRH) traveled to one of the nation’s front lines in the public health battle against Lyme disease to speak to a group of Martha’s Vineyard Hospital physicians. “I wanted to do this presentation by Skype because of all the ticks you have here,” she joked. 

Dr. Zubcevik was at Martha’s Vineyard Hospital (MVH) to speak at grand rounds, a weekly meeting of clinicians, which on this day was open to the public, resulting in an overflow crowd at the Community Room just off the hospital lobby.

Over the course of the hour, she shared the most recent findings that she and her colleagues have made on the diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease, in particular on the 10 to 15 percent of patients who suffer long-term symptoms, defined by Centers for Disease Control (CDC) as post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome (PTLDS). She discussed the protean nature of tick-borne diseases, the importance of public awareness, and the urgent need for the medical community to step up its game.

“Graduating medical students and doctors really aren’t educated about the gravity of this epidemic,” she said. “There’s a gap there that needs to be filled. We’re all responsible to educate our young doctors about what this entails.”

Dr. Zubcevic said the recent revelation that actor, singer, and songwriter Kris Kristofferson was cured of dementia once he was properly diagnosed with Lyme disease should be a lesson for medical professionals on how pervasive the disease is, and how often it is overlooked. “Sudden-onset dementia should really be a red flag for Lyme [disease], especially in people with compromised immune systems,” she said. “Everyone over 50 has a compromised immune system.”

To read the rest of the story click here.

For more on Lyme Disease from Penn State click here

Monday, June 5, 2017

PA Deer Forest Study Field Tour

Mifflin Juniata Perry Woodland Owners
June 9 @ 6:00-8:00 pm
Coopers Gap Road, Rothrock State Forest

Since 2013, the Deer Forest Study researchers from Penn State, U.S. Geological Survey, Pennsylvania Game Commission, and Pennsylvania DCNR Bureau of Forestry have been monitoring deer populations and forest changes in the Coopers Gap area of Rothrock State Forest near Reedsville, Mifflin County.

They have carefully monitored deer populations, biological diversity, and forest growth in this area. Hopes are, the study will lead to a better understanding of the complex relationships between deer and forests. Please join the Mifflin Perry Woodland Owner Association as we tour a few of the permanent monitoring plots as some of the researchers explain their findings.

Our presenters will be Dr. Duane Diefenbach – Leader and Adjunct Professor of Wildlife Ecology, U.S. Geological Survey PA Cooperative Fish & Wildlife Research Unit, Dr. Marc McDill – Forest Management, Penn State, and Danielle Begley-Miller, PhD Student, Wildlife and Fisheries, Penn State.

The tour will consist of a 10 minute walk on an easy to moderately difficult trail that will lead us to a monitoring plot. Please where appropriate clothing and footwear for this short hike. This is a rain or shine program.

The program will start promptly at 6:00 pm from a parking area along Coopers Gap Rd near Reedsville, PA. This parking lot is just east of the Conklin Road and Coopers Gap intersection and if coming from the south travel approximately 2.6 miles northwest from the corner of East Back Mountain Road and Coopers Gap Road. Since our meeting location doesn’t have an address we also are meeting attendees at the Arby’s Restaurant parking lot located at 20 Commerce Dr, Milroy, PA 17063 at 5:15 and promptly leaving at 5:30 to lead attendees to the Coopers Gap Parking Area.

Coopers Gap Parking Area GPS Coordinates - 40.699665, -77.667725  

Coopers Gap Parking Location with Bing Maps

For more information about the Deer Forest Study click here.  

Friday, June 2, 2017

Walk in Penn’s Woods

Hey All! See all that tall green stuff whizzing by your window as you drive through our state? All that is Penn’s Woods! Did you know it’s working for you? Would you like a personal introduction?

We’re trying to raise awareness of Pennsylvania’s working woodlands. Help Us Tell the Story! 

Penn’s Woods, Working for You, announces a statewide Walk in Penn’s Woods on Sunday, October 1st, 2017.  Rural, urban and suburban woods, state and national forests and parks, municipal watersheds, conserved areas, private lands and industry in the state’s 67 counties will hold open houses and guided woods walks showcasing the multiple values and diverse uses of our state’s priceless forest resources.

As the fall season arrives, the first Sunday in October this year will feature mentored woods walks across the state, providing entrĂ©e to land that is not always open to the public along with easy access to expert forest and wildlife professionals. A Walk in Penn’s Woods event may showcase management for wildlife or watersheds, exhibit the results of harvesting or planting, demonstrate the impacts of urban tree cover, showcase riparian buffers, offer children’s activities, or reveal the fascinating workings of a local sawmill. You’ll be able to find information about each individual walk at, as well as offer to host a walk. We are constantly updating this site as new events are planned and offered.

Walk in Penn’s Woods has wonderful statewide partners: all the venues and the resource professionals have volunteered their time and land. But we need your help to make everyone’s introduction to Penn’s Woods a huge success! With your contributions, we’ll be able to:

  • Advertise all the events
  • Make all the great connections between land, mentors and visitors
  • Provide terrific take-home material to digest after the introductions

Visit our crowdfunding site ( and help us make this happen!
Please help us get the word out.  Make a contribution. Share our posts with your contact list. And Save the Date, Walk in Penn’s Woods is October 1, 2017. We want to walk with you!