In The News

  • Zamora, Joanna

Welcome Dr. Joanna Zamora, Pediatrician

Welcome Joanna Zamora, MD, FAAP to the WVMC Medical Staff
Willamette Valley Medical Center would like to officially welcome Joanna Zamora, MD, FAAP […Read More]

  • Ziemba, Anne

Welcome Anne Ziemba, CNM

Willamette Valley Medical Center would like to Welcome Anne Ziemba, CNM to Medical Staff
January 4, 2016- McMinnville, OR- Willamette Valley Medical Center […Read More]

  • WVMCFinalLogo

Community Benefits in a Year of Health Care Transformation

2014 was a year of transformation for Oregon’s health care system. Our state saw a huge drop in the uninsured and large […Read More]

Our Bloggers


Zac Woodruff, WVMC Voices

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KendraKendra Lindell, Mommy & Me

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CarlyCarly Dunn,
Notes From Your Nutritionist

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My Weight-Loss Surgery

Read My Blog >>

Amazing Care Stories

  • Key

Leading the Nation in Quality

Willamette Valley Medical Center Earns ‘Top Performer on Key Quality Measures®’ Recognition from the Joint Commission for […Read More]

  • Mike Sandels- Amazing care story-Cardiac Rehab

A Lifesaving Decision

In November 2014 Mike Sandels had his second heart attack. He just happened to be walking by […Read More]

  • Real Heroes

Real Heroes in Our Community and at WVMC

Did you know that WVMC has a Diabetes Support Group that meets monthly? Its a place to […Read More]


Alcoholics Anonymous- Sunday Gratitude Meeting @ WVMC Classrooms (1st floor, across from cafeteria)
Feb 7 @ 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm

We now have a meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous every Sunday. This is an open meeting for all who are interested in recovery from alcoholism through the 12 Step program, including ambulatory patients and staff. For more information, call Robert (H) 503-835-1042 or (C) 971-259-9145.

New Moms Group @ Birthing Center Classroom
Feb 9 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Moms with babies up to two years old are welcome to join us each week for this very informal session. You’ll meet with other new moms and a registered nurse to discuss infant development, health and social issues, breastfeeding and other important topics. Siblings and toddlers are welcome!

Walk With Ease – Education for individuals with arthritis @ McMinnville Community Center
Feb 10 @ 10:00 am – 11:00 am
Newborn Care Class @ Birthing Center Classroom
Feb 10 @ 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm

This class is included in the child preparation series but if you would just like a course on newborn care this is the one for you. In this class you learn “the basics” as well as creative solutions to living and caring for your newborn. Includes care safety seat information and inspection.


I’m getting a ZIT!
By Zac Woodruff, RN BS

Okay. We’ve all been there.

I woke up yesterday morning, went to rub my eyes and face to wake up, and BOOM! I immediately felt some discomfort and knew what was going on.

Before I even hit the mirror up, I could tell some little jerk was cooking up something underneath my skin, right on the tip of my nose.

Have you ever had one of those? A zit in a place that is especially tender, like right inside your ear, or inside your nose, or in my case, smack dab on the tip of my nose. Or worse yet, a just getting started zit that still has a long way to go.

And I hate how it seems like they just literally come out of nowhere. Like the night before, when I went to sleep, I didn’t notice or feel anything. Then I wake up to a ridiculous Rudolph nose and a morning full of wincing and grimacing.

Oh and this was the kind that was deep enough that putting any pressure on it brought zero relief. There was nothing to pop or squeeze. Nope, we weren’t at that stage yet. We were merely kicking off the preliminary round, and I knew I was going to be in for a long battle.

Yesterday was not fun. Mr. Deep Zit, you are not cool.

This morning I woke up, and it really wasn’t that much better. But in the interest of blogging, I jumped online and did a bit of research on how to best handle my precarious situation.

Well, before I jump ahead on how to relieve a deep zit, perhaps we should talk about what a zit is in the first place.

A zit, or pimple, is a small pustule or papule. Zits are small skin lesions or inflammations of the skin - they are sebaceous glands (oil glands) which are infected with bacteria, swell up, and then fill up with pus. The exact cause and timing of them is unknown, but it is believed that hormones known as androgens, stress, hygiene, and a person’s genetics may play a very large role.

Getting rid of a zit deep under the skin requires the help of a warm compress to soften the plug and draw it to the surface. Once it’s at the surface, then the fun can begin. We’ve all been there, and done that.

If you are going to get your squeeze on, WebMD (2015) recommends the following:

1. Don't poke too early. Wait until your pimple has a firm white head. That means the pus is close to the surface and ready to be drained.

2. Wash your hands thoroughly with warm water, soap, and a fingernail brush.

3. Sterilize a straight pin with a match or lighter. Let the pin cool, then wipe it down with rubbing alcohol. Swab the zit with alcohol and pour some on your fingers, too.

4. Dry your fingers and wrap them with a clean tissue.

5. Position your pin. Hold the pin parallel to the surface of your skin, and gently pierce the very tip of the zit's white center.

6. Using your fingers, or a cotton swab, softly squeeze the pimple. Press around (not on) the white tip of the zit. If the pus doesn't come out easily, the pimple isn't ready to be popped. Stop!

7. Apply more alcohol (it will sting) or a very small amount of bacitracin ointment to the now-deflated blemish.

However, many dermatologists recommend resisting the temptation to put the pressure on and erupt the zit volcano. Left alone, a zit should heal itself in 3 to 7 days. Popped improperly, it can linger for weeks or even lead to scarring.

Yeah, good luck with that one.

So there it is, my tale of the Superbowl weekend zit. Too bad it wasn’t Christmas Eve, I could’ve guided Santa’s sleigh for him.

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Has anyone heard of Bariatric Pal? It's a WLS forum that opens conversations up for failures and successes within the bariatric community. I have been a member of it since before my surgery, but have not used it lately. Well, last week I got an email from them offering a free viewing of a documentary on WLS. The movie is called "All Of Me" and is about several woman's journey's through surgery and recovery.

I was conflicted about watching it. Part of me felt like I should and the other part was hesitant because I have been struggling and didn't want to think about the subject. I decided to go ahead and watch it. Although I am glad I did, it was a struggle to get through.

The movie followed a group of overweight woman as some of them went through surgery. What made me sad was watching one of the woman getting the surgery and watching her gain all the weight back as she failed to comply with a new lifestyle. Not only did she not succeed at using WLS as a tool, but also lost some of her closest friends and husband due to emotional struggles. It was heart-wrenching to watch and I became scared that would happen to me. However, there was a happy ending for another woman who lost over 100lbs and kept most of it off.

The documentary was brutally honest about the realities of having WLS. I would recommend everyone thinking about having surgery or those who have already had it to watch it. It is very relatable to what most of us have/are going through. WLS is not the end, but just the beginning of a satisfying but difficult journey towards health. It is nice to know that we are not alone and that there is support out there. I feel lucky to have a supportive family, friends and doctors. Dr Higa and his staff are very nice and is very helpful with every challenge that comes my way.

The monthly support group at the hospital is a great way to meet other patients and get answers to questions. I am also thinking of starting a WLS social group in Salem, where we can build a group of friends that can understand what the WLS lifestyle is like while doing fun activities. Please let me know if you are interested in getting together sometime. It's nice to have someone to talk to that knows what I'm going through. Thanks!
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After almost 16 months, Nate and I decided we were ready for a night away from our sweet little ones. After dropping them off at my parents, we played the part of tourists and got a hotel room downtown McMinnville.

We packed in quite a bit in a short period of time. We did a little wine tasting, had a nice dinner and went to a birthday party. Despite our best intentions, we were in bed by 9:30pm and then awake by 5am, not on purpose of course. But waking up at 5am is so much nicer when it's followed by lounging in bed for a couple hours. That's a rare treat we don't get to indulge in anymore and we took advantage of the opportunity. We had a nice relaxing breakfast and finally returned to pick up Karson and Lucy.

I missed them of course but surprisingly, being away overnight was easier than I thought it would be. I knew they were in great hands. They also finally started kind of sleeping through the night so I didn't feel so bad about what my parents might be going through. I knew the night had gone well because they hardly seemed to miss me when we returned. I think it went by quick for all of us. After all, we weren't even gone 24 hours.

The experience made me more confident that we'll all be able to survive a longer trip away from each other. The longest I've gone up till now was six or seven hours, mostly due to breastfeeding. I've been trying to space our feedings out longer and we finally got rid of our last night time session so I finally felt okay about taking the jump. And luckily Karson and Lucy have wonderful grandparents who were more than willing to make it happen.

I still can't help but think about what goes through their little heads during times like these. What will they think when leave for a longer stretch? Will they wonder where I am? Will they feel abandoned? Will they even miss me? I hope for my own sake, maybe just a little bit :)

Note: Kendra Lindell gave birth to twins, Karson and Lucy on October 5th, 2014 at Willamette Valley Medical Center Birthing Center. She writes about her experience on the WVMC Facebook page. STAY TUNED for more stories from Kendra. See for previous posts.
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