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Three Things to Know About Life After an Ostomy

by Jessica May 24 2017 06:12
three things to know about life after ostomy surgery

At 180 Medical, we understand that you might have some apprehension about what your life will be like after you have an ostomy procedure. You may find you have to make some adjustments, based on your doctor's recommendations, and getting used to have an ostomy may take some time. But will your day-to-day life be completely different? Let's take a moment to break down the three main things you'll want to know if you're concerned about an upcoming ostomy surgery.

What Is an Ostomy?

An ostomy is a surgically-created opening in the abdomen that allows waste to leave your body. There are several types of ostomies depending on the affected area. We specialize in these three main types:

  • Colostomy: An artificial opening from the colon to divert the flow of formed stool
  • Ileostomy: An artificial opening from the small intestine to divert the flow of loose stool
  • Urostomy: An artificial opening from the urinary system to divert the flow of urine
You may be getting an ostomy procedure due to any number of issues, such as cancer of the colon or bladder, IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease), severe diverticulitis, a physical trauma or accident, and many other issues. Your situation with having an ostomy can be temporary or permanent, depending on the condition, but that will be for your healthcare practitioner to determine.

Having an ostomy is not at all uncommon, and although it may seem like you're going through this alone, you are among thousands who live as ostomates all over the world. In fact, in the United States alone, it's estimated that as many as 750,000 people have an ostomy.

number of ostomates living in the usa

Will Others Be Able to Tell That I Have an Ostomy?

Although having an ostomy is nothing to be ashamed of, we understand that it may feel embarrassing or uncomfortable at first as you adjust to your new life as an ostomate. But with the proper supplies that fit you well, no one will be able to see that you have an ostomy. It's completely up to you how, when, and if you tell others about your surgery, but there are plenty of supplies and accessories, including clothing options, that can help you feel clean and secure, no matter whether you're in public, at home, being active or even swimming.

Many of the pouches we carry feature charcoal filters to release any gas without build-up or odor. These also often have comfortable cloth-like panels which are specifically designed to stay quiet and discreet beneath your clothes. Depending on what type of ostomy you have, your doctor may have recommendations for the best type of system for your needs, and our Ostomy Specialists can also work with you to discover what may best suit your needs and preferences.

Will I Be Able to Lead a Normal Life After an Ostomy?

swimming with an ostomyYou can absolutely lead a normal life after having an ostomy procedure. There will, of course, be an adjustment period as your body heals post-surgery. Learning how to apply and remove your pouching system can also take a little time to figure out exactly works best for you, based on the recommendations and schedule as given by your doctor, but before you know it, you'll be a pro. 

As far as other adjustments to your lifestyle, such as your diet, that will be an individual recommendation from your doctor, since each body is unique. You may find that certain foods affect your digestive system differently, or your doctor may have some tips on the type and amounts of fluids to drink as well. For the most part, you can probably resume your normal diet once you're given the okay from your doctor.

Many people who live a more active lifestyle wonder if they'll be able to stay active after their ostomy procedure. This, again, will be on a case-by-case basis, and your doctor will be able to discuss this with you in more detail, but typically, you can get back to your exercise routine or favorite activities when and if your doctor approves. It's possible you may be advised to stay away from full-contact or rough sports, but you should be able to run, swim, and even lift weights once you're healed after an ostomy. If you have any questions, please consult your doctor. 

Also, once your doctor gives you the okay, you can go back to work or school after healing from your ostomy procedure. If you work a manual labor job, you may have to make some adjustments or speak with your employer about changing your tasks. For many people, getting back to their normal daily routine or work schedule is a great step to feeling more confident and assured that life will not be so different with an ostomy, after all. 

Do you need ostomy supplies? We're here to help!
At 180 Medical, we have a variety of ostomy products, including barriers, pouches, and other accessories to ensure you have everything you need. Contact us to speak with a trained Ostomy Specialist who is ready to lend you a compassionate ear and help you find the right ostomy supplies for you.

steps to receive ostomy supplies
Steps to Receiving
Your Ostomy Supplies 
what's next after ostomy surgery
 What's Next After 
Your Ostomy Surgery?

Confirmations Department Employee Spotlight: Meet Jacob

by Jessica May 18 2017 06:27
180 medical confirmations employee spotlight

180 Medical is a national supplier of intermittent catheters, ostomy products, and related medical supplies. We make it a point to hire positive, compassionate, hard-working individuals who want to enjoy going to work, not only for a paycheck but for a rewarding place where we can make a difference. 180 Medical offers a competitive benefits package, extensive training, and many fun extras and perks. We were also named one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma for the 7th year in 2016. 

We're happy to feature Jacob from our Confirmations Department in this month's employee spotlight. 

jacob confirmations 180 medical employee spotlight

Jacob, tell us a little bit about yourself.
I was in the military for 4 years, mainly stationed out of Fort Bliss in El Paso, TX. I was a (68W) combat medic. In my spare time, I love to go fishing and camping, and one of my favorite hobbies is to watch and play sports. I was born and raised in Oklahoma, and I have to watch the Oklahoma Sooners play every year. Some day, I'd like to start my own business.

What are some of your main duties as a Confirmations Specialist?
My day revolves around confirming regular orders for our customers to make sure they receive their much-needed supplies in the amounts and quantities they need. We call about 7 to 10 days before their regularly scheduled order just to make sure they are ready. This is done to make sure we follow and meet insurance requirements, and it also ensures that our customers get the right amount for their needs every time. 

jacob 180 medical employeeWhat's one of your favorite memories at 180 Medical so far?
My favorite memory here was the first time I saw an example of just how much of a positive impact we have the opportunity to make in people's lives here. Close to the time I started working here, I spoke with a customer who was going through a really difficult time, and together, we looked at a few different options on his account that helped to alleviate some of his burdens. About a month or so later, I heard that he had called back in to let us know how much he appreciated everything that I did for him. That's when I realized that we really do make a difference every day we come in to work, and that's a priceless feeling.

If you knew someone who was considering applying for a job at 180 Medical, what advice would you give them?
Do it! You won't regret it. 180 Medical really is a great place to work. There is so much opportunity for growth and development. It's very hard to become complacent because you learn something new every day, and everyone around you wants to see you succeed. We are a team, and it takes effort from everyone on our team to complete our mission.

Do you have a favorite quote that keeps you inspired?
"The true measure of a man is not how he behaves in moments of comfort and convenience, but how he stands at times of controversy and challenges." - Martin Luther King, Jr.  

Thank you, Jacob, and all of our awesome employees in the Confirmations Department. We appreciate the effort and compassion that you display every day in your work and handling our customers like our own family members. You truly do make a difference!

Are you interested in becoming a part of the 180 Medical family? We're hiring! Check out our available positions and apply today.

180 medical is hiring

About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for over 7 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, music, art, and & spending time with her dogs, friends & family.

Bladder Cancer Symptoms and Risk Factors

by Jessica May 15 2017 11:42
bladder cancer

May is Bladder Cancer Awareness Month, and during this time, we believe that it's important to raise awareness about this disease, its potential risk factors, and its symptoms so you can be informed to be able to make the best decisions for your health.

How Do Irritants Increase the Risk of Bladder Cancer?

Bladder irritation may potentially increase the risk of bladder cancer, which could be caused by various issues such as bladder stones, frequent UTIs (urinary tract infections), smoking cigarettes, and even the use of indwelling catheters. In addition to that, you could be more likely to suffer from bladder cancer if you're older or a male.

Symptoms of Bladder Cancer in Men and Women

bladder cancer factsSince those who use catheters and have spinal cord injuries may be more susceptible to bladder cancer, it's important to know and be able to identify the symptoms of bladder cancer. Symptoms can range in severity and type based on the stage of cancer and whether or not the cancer has spread. However, here are five common symptoms of bladder cancer to be aware of:

  • Blood in urine
  • Frequent urination
  • Back pain
  • Pelvic pain
  • Painful urination

If you experience any of these symptoms, it's important to make your urologist or other healthcare provider aware, although these could be caused by a variety of different conditions. This is why it's so important to have consistent, open communication with your healthcare provider and to make sure they know about any new symptoms you experience so you can be properly evaluated.

In addition to that, remember to use your intermittent catheters in accordance with the sterile guidelines to reduce your risk of infection and follow your doctor's instructions on how and when to cath. 

After Bladder Cancer

If caught early, bladder cancer can be treatable and, depending on the stage, can be survived. Some with bladder cancer may have their bladders removed as part of their treatment to make sure the cancer does not spread farther, but there are options available to keep you independent and healthy, such as urostomy surgery or catheterizing with a neobladder.

If you're seeking a reliable catheter or ostomy supply provider, 180 Medical offers intermittent catheters along with urostomy pouches, wafers, barriers, adhesive removers, belts, and plenty of other high-quality accessories. Feel free to contact our friendly, trained Product Specialists, who will be glad to work with you to find the right supplies for your needs. 

what's next after ostomy surgery
What's Next After Your
Ostomy Surgery?
top 5 tips for bladder health
Top 5 Tips to Keep
Your Bladder Healthy

180 Medical Takes Part in the 2017 OKASA Wheelchair Basketball Tournament

by Jessica May 11 2017 06:20
We recently got to participate for the 9th year in the annual OU Physicians Games Wheelchair Basketball Tournament, which is one of our favorite annual events to attend and support. The event supports the Oklahoma Adaptive Sports Association (OKASA) and raises funds for disabled athletes. During this great event, teams of doctors from OU Medical Center as well as a team from 180 Medical play wheelchair basketball and take on the awesome Oklahoma Blaze. 

okasa wheelchair basketball tournament 2017
During the event, there's a lot of fun to be had, even outside of the basketball games, like face painting, carnival games, popcorn and other tasty treats, and a silent auction to benefit OKASA. On top of that, the OKC Thunder Drummers came out again this year to entertain the crowd, and the children's cheerleader group, Inspiring Attitudes, performed dance routines between games, too. The annual wheelchair basketball tournament is a blast for all our employees to come watch and cheer on the Blaze and all the other great teams, including our own.

"It's so incredibly important to us to support the doctors and providers and patients that we work with, and we love the event. We're just so happy to be a part of it," says Michael Pampalone, one of 180 Medical's Urologic Territory Specialists.
okasa wheelchair basketball tournament 2017

The Blaze is still just too good for us to beat! We didn't even score a basket this year, but our team had a great time as always, and we're honored to be able to be a part of this important and fun annual event!

About OKASA: The Oklahoma Adaptive Sports Association is an organization that supports recreational and athletic activities for adults and children with disabilities. These events include such sports as wheelchair basketball, track and field, swimming, table tennis, and competitive weight-lifting. The organization promotes health and fitness and teaches lifelong skills such as team effort, good sportsmanship, setting goals, commitment, and responsibility. You can also connect with them on Facebook or Twitter

About the Author:
Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for 7 years. Her current job title is Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company. In her free time, she loves writing, making art, and hanging with her dogs and loved ones.

180 Medical Participates in 2017 MS Society Walk MS Event in Oklahoma City

by Jessica April 26 2017 07:05
At 180 Medical, we like to do all we can to support important causes and participate in charitable events when we can in the community. This year makes it our sixth year to participate. The National MS Society's Walk MS event is always a great time for us to get together with our fellow co-workers, connect with others, and do our part to raise funds for the MS Society and take steps to end Multiple Sclerosis for good. MS affects more than 2.3 million people across the world, and as of today, there is still no cure, but every day gets us closer, and every dollar raised means a great deal to those who are living with Multiple Sclerosis.

180 medical walk ms 2017 collage 1

This year's Central Oklahoma Walk MS was held at the Myriad Botanical Gardens on April 22nd, 2017. Everyone who came out had a blast, and as always, many of us brought our families and our dogs for the morning out. We also loved getting to meet people who came by our 180 Medical table. A local group of high school marching band drummers came out to lead everyone when the walk began at 10 a.m., and the path led us around some beautiful sights and building around downtown Oklahoma City. 

Just as it is for us every year, we had a wonderful time supporting a wonderful cause, and we look forward to the future Walk MS events.

About the Author:
Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for 7 years. Her current job title is Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company. In her free time, she loves writing, making art, and hanging with her dogs and loved ones.

WOC Nurse Week 2017

by Jessica April 21 2017 02:48
wocn week 2017

Nurses across the country are such a crucial part of healthcare, but this week in particular (April 16-22, 2017) is dedicated to the nurses that specialize in the field of wound, ostomy (urostomy, colostomy, & ileostomy) and continence care (such as bowel or bladder incontinence). At 180 Medical, we feel honored to be able to work with certified nurses in better assisting our ostomy patients with their diverse, individual needs, whether they're dealing with skin irritation around their stoma, leakage issues, or something else that requires the medical advice of a trained professional.
wocn week 2017 ostomy specialist quote
If your life has been touched by a WOC (Wound, Ostomy, & Continence) nurse, whether due to issues with pressure sores and other difficult-to-heal wounds, bowel or urinary incontinence, or ostomy issues, you know you have a compassionate advocate on your side who can offer your educational information, personalized care, and more. Although there are thousands of certified WOC nurses across the country, we appreciate every single one, because we see firsthand how much they affect the lives of the patients they advise and treat. 

One of our Ostomy Specialists, Cait, had this to say about the special relationship 180 Medical has with WOC Nurses: "When talking to our new ostomy customers, who may often feel frustrated by their situation, it's wonderful to be able to reassure them that not only are we here to help them, but we also have a connection to a team of certified WOC Nurses they can talk to, free of charge! The fact that we work with WOCNs so closely allows us to raise the level of service we can provide, & we love that opportunity to be able to make sure our customers get the best care possible."

We're glad to use this week to spread awareness about the great significance of WOC Nurses and both recognize and honor what they do every day to help their patients. Their great compassion and dedication to their work is inspiring.

More information about WOC Nurses can be found at

If you have an ostomy and are seeking a reliable provider for your ileostomy, urostomy, or colostomy supplies, 180 Medical can help you. We also provide intermittent catheter supplies, and our helpful Specialists can assist in finding the right products for your individual needs and then ship them right to your doorstep to lighten your burden and make the transition to living with an ostomy a little easier. Just give us a call at 1-877-688-2729.

steps to receiving your ostomy supplies whats after your ostomy surgery
What's Next After
Your Ostomy Surgery? 

About the Author:
Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for 7 years. Her current job title is Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company. In her free time, she loves writing, making art, and hanging with her dogs and loved ones.

Top 10 Reasons to Work at 180 Medical

by Jessica April 18 2017 07:40
top 10 reasons to work at 180 Medical
Are you seeking a career where your hard work and compassionate heart will be valued? Are you looking for a job where you can work alongside other positive, friendly people who want to make a difference? You might be a great fit for 180 Medical! 

Here are our top 10 reasons to apply for a job at 180 Medical!

reasons to work at 180 Medical 1Casual Wear Monday through Friday180 medical employee testimonial
How many workplaces do you know of that allows their employees to wear jeans and t-shirts to work? Not many! It may seem like a small thing, but many of our employees love that we don't have to put on business suits or high heels every day, and that the focus of our company is based more in the value of the work you put in every day!

reasons to work at 180 Medical 2Goal-Driven Incentives
Each week, we set a goal for ourselves that allows us to focus on our customers' satisfaction and health. If we meet those goals, we may have a fun snack or tasty treat catered in! Based on your position and how much you're willing to go above and beyond every day, you could also be eligible for other incentives, such as quarterly awards, bonuses, and gift cards.

reasons to work at 180 Medical 3A Competitive Employee Benefits Package
180 Medical offers a full benefits package, including health/medical insurance, dental insurance, and life insurance along with an opportunity to invest in a 401(k) retirement plan with a generous company match, as well as options for a vision plan and short and long-term disability. Paid time off and sick leave is also included in your benefits package.

reasons to work at 180 Medical 4Positively Affecting Others' Lives Daily
At 180 Medical, we have the unique opportunity to turn our customers' lives around with personal, friendly service. It's not uncommon for the customers we speak with on a daily basis to be going through a difficult personal time, and it's wonderful to be able to have a chance to lighten their load a little by offering them a listening ear and medical supplies that are necessary for their health. 

reasons to work at 180 Medical 5The Opportunity to Give Back to the Local Community
We're not only blessed with the chance to help our customers, we also have regular opportunities that allow you to participate in charitable events to help give back. There are annual events that we make it a point to attend locally, such as the National MS Society's Central Oklahoma Walk MS event, the Endeavor Games, OU Medicine's Corporate Challenge, and OKASA's annual wheelchair basketball tournament. But there are options for participation for all of our employees nationwide, wherever they live. There are opportunities to connect with others at charitable events like the Spina Bifida Association's Walk-N-Rolls or Bowl-a-thons, runs for Prostate Cancer, volunteering at food banks or helping with Habitat for Humanity, and we also offer an annual option around Christmas to purchase gifts for children in need. 

reasons to work at 180 Medical 6Company Events Keep It Fun Year-Round
It seems like there's always something new happening at 180 Medical, whether that's an opportunity to participate in local charitable community events (as above), holiday happenings, or fun contests. Just a few of the things we look forward to each year include: our annual chili and salsa cook-off, our company Christmas party, Halloween costume contests, bowling night, Thunder Up decorating competition celebrating Oklahoma City's local NBA team, and regular holiday potlucks and snack days.

180 medical employees fun events

reasons to work at 180 Medical 7The Chance for Learning and Growth Within the Company
What we do at 180 Medical is important, and not only will your position give you a sense of purpose, you will also have an opportunity to enrich your experience. You'll get on-the-job training, chances to shadow other job positions to learn what they do on a daily basis, as well as ongoing learning so that you can stay up-to-date and well-versed on the latest products that could help our customers. 

reasons to work at 180 Medical 8Working at 180 Medical Means Being a Part of Our Family
At 180 Medical, our hardworking recruiters make it a point to hire team players who have a heart for helping others, a friendly and positive attitude, and a great work ethic. So when you come to work at 180 Medical, you know you're working180 medical customer specialist alongside others who are ready to make your day a little better! 

reasons to work at 180 Medical 9Our Employee Satisfaction Ratings Are Consistently High
2016 was our 7th year to be once again selected as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma by okcbiz Magazine. This is awarded by the Best Companies Group based on a workplace's business practices, company philosophy, and demographics as well as an in-depth survey where employees have an opportunity to anonymously share their feedback of what it's like in their workplace in their own experience. We're honored to continue to be ranked among the top employers in the state by our employees, and we think that says a lot about 180 Medical and our positive culture, which is based on what we call "The 180 Way." The 180 Way consists of five main principles that we believe in: being Specialists in what we do, offering Compassion to others, maintaining our Integrity by always doing what's right, offering Education to both our employees and our customers so they can be better informed about the products they use, and providing superior Service.

do what you love love what you do 180 medical

reasons to work at 180 medical 10reasons to work at 180 medical 10 2Do What You Love - Love What You Do
At 180 Medical, we're not just about business, although we do work hard to take care of each of our customers. We also want our employees to come to their jobs knowing they're going to have a good time around friendly people, fit into a position that works best with their particular talents and skill-sets, and get to connect with people who need our help in getting the right supplies for their needs.

If you think you might be ready for a job that offers you all of the above and gives you the chance to say, "I really do love what I do," consider applying for one of the open positions on our Careers page today!

180 medical is hiring

About the Author:
Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for 7 years. Her current job title is Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company. In her free time, she loves writing, making art, and hanging with her dogs and loved ones.

180 Medical Product News: SpeediCath® Flex Coudé Catheter

by Jessica April 13 2017 05:46
speedicath flex coude catheter 180 medical

We love to keep you informed on the new catheter and ostomy products on the market, so you're fully aware of all the latest supply options that might fit your needs. In this post, you can find out more about a new and easy-to-use intermittent catheter product from Coloplast, the SpeediCath® Flex Coudé Catheter.

What are some key features to know about the SpeediCath® Flex Coudé Catheter?

The SpeediCath® Flex is a newly released catheter that offers an all-in-one, discreet, and convenient way to self-cath. With an ultra flexible insertion tip, you can easily guide the catheter through the urethra and into the bladder more comfortably, and the dry sleeve surrounding the tube itself allows you to catheterize without ever touching the catheter, offering you a more hygienic and sterile cathing experience. When you're done, simply lock the ends back together for a clean and discreet way to dispose of the catheter. 

Here are some of the main product features:

  • Male length (14 inches)
  • Soft-squeeze grip
  • Dry sleeve for no-touch insertion
  • Hydrophilic coating for a smooth, friction-free insertion
  • Flexible, soft insertion tip
  • Packaging that is easy to open and close back for tidy disposal
  • PVC-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • Sterile, single-use

Source: Coloplast

How do I use the SpeediCath® Flex Catheter?

countdown how to cath step 1Wash your hands and gather any accessories you may need, such as disinfecting wipes or gloves, then remove the cover label from the adhesive area on the catheter package, so you can attach it to a clean surface within your reach when you're ready to open and use it.

countdown how to cath step 2Prepare by using a disinfecting wipes, putting on gloves, or laying down a drape on your lap for additional protection, if you prefer.

countdown how to cath step 3Open the packaging by using the circular ring to pull the package covering out and then down until you see the gray dots indicating the tear stop.

countdown how to cath step  4Open the catheter by twisting the lock. Be sure to hold both sizes of the catheter up so that none of the liquid inside, which helps lubricate the catheter, will escape or drip out. If you use a collection bag for your urine, you can easily connect the catheter to it. Don't let the flexible tip touch anything before you insert it into your urethra to make sure the entire process stays as sterile as possible.

how to cath step 5After catheterizing, simply put the ends back together and twist the lock to seal the catheter. You can put it back inside the collection bag and close it to dispose of it hygienically and without mess.

For more information about the process of catheterization, you can visit, which offers instructions for men, women, and children in all options from straight, hydrophilic, and closed systems.

Disclaimer: Please note that this is intended to provide a general understanding of how to self-cath. However, it should not be used in place of the recommendations for how you should catheterize based on your personal anatomy and needs. For personal instructions, visit, call, or consult with your prescribing physician or other professional healthcare provider.

Also, you can contact us at 180 Medical where one of our friendly, trained specialists can walk you through the process of catheterization and send you samples of the Flex to try out. We also offer one-of-a-kind instructional materials that can be sent to you with your order, including printed color brochures and a DVD. 

coloplast speedicath flex coude 180 medical

Which Coloplast products does 180 Medical carry?

180 Medical is proud to carry a wide variety of Coloplast catheter products, including their Compact catheters, straight catheters, coudé catheters, hydrophilic catheters, closed system catheters, and more. 

We also provide catheters from all of the major brands available on the market today.

180 medical catheter brands carried

How can I find the catheter that's right for me?

Just contact us to speak to one of our trained, friendly specialists. We'll be glad to help find the right intermittent catheter that will best fit your individual preferences and needs, and we can also verify your insurance to determine if and how these products are covered on your policy. 

Related Posts

About the Author:
Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for 7 years. Her current job title is Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company.

Billing Department Employee Spotlight: Meet Crystal

by Jessica March 31 2017 09:39
180 medical employee spotlight blog

180 Medical is a national supplier of ostomy product, intermittent catheters, and related medical supplies, and we make it a point to hire positive, compassionate, hard-working individuals who want to enjoy going to work, not only for a paycheck but for a rewarding place where we can make a difference. We offer a competitive benefits package, extensive training, and many fun extras and perks. 180 Medical was also named one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma for the 7th year in 2016. 

We're happy to feature Crystal from our Billing Department in this month's employee spotlight. Crystal is a Billing Team Lead and has been a member of the 180 Medical family for eight years as of this month! Take some time to learn a little more about Crystal and some of what she does as part of her job here at 180 Medical.

crystal billing employee 180 medical

Crystal, we're excited to feature you on the blog this month since it's your 8 year anniversary with 180 Medical! How do you feel your time here has helped you in your professional development?

All of my supervisors have always been very helpful, and they have offered training and proper career development needed to perform my job well and prepare for advancement within the company. Management here are very encouraging about taking on new tasks and stepping out of your comfort zone to accomplish success. 

If you knew someone who was considering applying for a job at 180 Medical, what advice would you give them?
I would tell them this will be the best job they have ever had! 180 Medical has a fun and friendly environment, and I feel like they really care about their employees. You get to work alongside great people, and there are great benefits too! 

What’s a fact about you that people might be surprised to know?
Most people are surprised at a couple of jobs I had when I was younger. I was probably one of the youngest lunch ladies ever! When I was 21, I worked in the OKC Public Schools Cafeteria, and I was also a mail carrier for a couple of years in my early 20s.

crystal 180 medical billing employee testimonial quoteWhat’s an average day in the life for you in your position? What are some of your main responsibilities?
As a Billing Team Lead, I am responsible for helping answer questions that employees in my department may have, and I also help to resolve any issues with claims processing, I keep our billing manual up-to-date so that we always have the most current insurance requirements and guidelines in place to follow, and in addition, I provide training sessions to help the billing specialists keep up with changes with various insurance plans and department processes. My specialty is more on the various state Medicaid plans, and this sometimes requires a lot of research since Medicaid plans are sometimes very complex and detailed, but that's great because I really enjoy doing research! 

What's something you really enjoy about working at 180 Medical?
Among all the great perks, I really love going to our quarterly meetings. They are always entertaining and full of laughs, and it's also great to see people get rewarded for their hard work throughout each quarter. 180 Medical encourages employees to take the time to focus on our customers and give extra effort, and I appreciate that. To me, having the freedom to go above and beyond to help people who need us is a great feeling!

How do you like to spend your time outside of work? 
I am pretty laid-back and simple, so the thing I enjoy most is just spending time with my wonderful family. I have 8 great nieces and nephews and 1 grand-baby that I love getting to spoil. 

Do you have a favorite quote that keeps you inspired?

"The quality of strength lined with tenderness is an unbeatable combination" - Maya Angelou  

Thanks to Crystal and all of our awesome employees in the Billing Department. We appreciate all of the work and care you put in every day at work, and your contributions are so important to 180 Medical. 

180 medical employees on food truck day

Are you interested in becoming a part of the 180 Medical family? We're hiring! Check out our available positions and apply today.

180 medical is hiring

About the Author:

Jessica has worked for 180 Medical for over 7 years and currently holds the title of Purchasing & Marketing Coordinator. Her favorite things about 180 Medical are her great co-workers and getting to work for such a fun, caring company! She loves writing, music, art, and & spending time with her dogs, friends & family.

The Importance of Seeing a Urologist

by billf March 22 2017 07:12
the importance of seeing a urologist

 My name is Bill, and I have worked for 180 Medical for over 10 years. bill f 180 medicalAbout 26 years ago, I was involved in a motocross accident that rendered me quadriplegic. You can learn more about my story here. Over the years since then, I've been able to use my experiences to help and counsel others who are also dealing with life after a spinal cord injury. I am happiest when I am helping others, and these days at 180 Medical, I spend a lot of time talking to our customers on the phone who are new to self-catheterizing.

There are a lot of people who use intermittent catheters and mainly rely on their general practitioner for their checkups and healthcare needs. While this is perfectly fine, it may be a good idea to see a urologist annually for a more thorough checkup. Since urologists specialize in conditions relating to the entire urinary system as well as the male reproductive organs, they may be able to better pinpoint issues that your general practitioner might not catch.

What to Expect at an Annual Exam with a Urologist

Seeing a urologist may seem intimidating at first, but generally, an annual exam is fairly simple and could be potentially life-saving, depending on what symptoms you may be experiencing. There are various procedures that your urologist may use to check for any abnormalities or potential issues, including growths, infections, or stones.

Some tests or examinations that you may be able to expect, depending upon what the doctor thinks is necessary for your individual situation, may include:

  • A physical exam
  • A urine specimen
  • A cystoscopy (where the lower urinary tract is examined with a mini camera) 
  • Imaging studies (ultrasound or x-ray, most typically) 
  • Urodynamics
  • A tissue biopsy

Bladder Cancer and Other Factors to Consider

An annual exam is a wise idea for anyone using catheter supplies, but it's also important to see your doctor if there are any unusual or out-of-the-ordinary symptoms as soon as possible. Waiting on treating something as small as urinary tract infection may lead to the condition becoming a more serious issue.

Bladder irritation may increase the risk of bladder cancer, and this can be from various issues such as repeated UTIs (urinary tract infections) or bladder infections, use of a foley catheter, and bladder stones. There are higher rates of bladder cancer among tobacco users, so if you smoke or vape, this is also a great reason to get a regular check-up.

Additionally, if you are living with a neurogenic bladder or a SCI (spinal cord injury), you may want to consider the importance of checking for bladder cancer regularly too. The risk for this disease for those with SCIs is about "15 times higher than that of the general population" (New Mobility).

Since bladder cancer does not always have obvious symptoms, especially in the beginning stages, it's incredibly important to have a specialist like a urologist look over your bladder and urinary system in its entirety regularly so that any potential issues can be caught early.

Year-Round Maintenance of Your Urinary System's Health

As always, the best thing you can do for your bladder, kidneys, and the rest of your urinary system is to follow your healthcare professional's recommendations.

This may include such advice as:

  • Take any medications you have been prescribed as directed
  • Keep properly hydrated according to your individual needs
  • Continue regular check-ups with your urologist, especially in the case of any unusual or out-of-the-ordinary symptoms
  • Always use good hygiene when using intermittent catheters, such as practicing sterile use versus washing and reusing, washing your hands well, and using disinfecting wipes or swabs
  • Catheterize according to the schedule laid out by your doctor, which is typically going to be often enough to keep the urine volume inside your bladder under 10 ounces
  • Use adequate sterile, water-soluble lubrication when cathing to avoid make catheterization more comfortable
  • Consider using a hydrophilic catheter to further reduce irritation to the urethra and bladder, or a catheter with a gripper or sleeve to avoid touching the catheter directly, which can reduce the risk of infection

At 180 Medical, we not only provide top-quality intermittent catheter supplies; we also offer helpful, educational material whenever possible to make sure you have all the information you need, including instructions on how to self-cath. For more information about catheters that could be right for your needs, feel free to contact us. If you have any questions or seek medical advice, please be sure to consult with your healthcare professional. 

Disclaimer: Please note that this is intended to provide a general understanding of bladder health and the importance of seeing a doctor. It should not be used in place of a visit, call, or consultation with a physician or other professional healthcare provider.

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bill bio pic 180 medical employee
Bill has worked for 180 Medical for over 10 years. He loves getting to talk to our customers, sharing his first-hand experiences as a quadriplegic, and helping those with in-depth questions about self-catheterization. He enjoys spending time outdoors, as well as watching and attending motocross events. Learn more about Bill's story.