Apostolos “Paul” I. Hiotellis, MD
TPMG City Center Family Medicine
Q. Why did you choose family medicine as your practice area and what do you enjoy most about your job? A. In medical school we have to rotate through various specialties. My last one was family medicine, and it seemed to bring everything together that I had gone through in other rotations in a comprehensive and fulfilling way. I enjoy the ability to care for patients from small babies to patients who are entering their golden years. I find it satisfying to manage a multitude of acute and chronic ailments and develop relationships and trust with my patients.
Q. What are the top three things you recommend to patients in terms of making overall healthy lifestyle choices? A. Moderation both in activity and diet. Extremes are not sustainable. Each day is a fresh start, so I recommend throwing out the failures from the day before and focusing instead on what’s ahead of you. I encourage patients to focus on weight in smaller numbers, for instance if you need to drop 50 pounds, then focus on the first five. Fifty seems insurmountable, but 5 pounds can be very manageable to begin the journey.
Q. Why are annual wellness exams important and how can patients make the most of these visits? A. Annual wellness visits are important because they allow the provider and patient time to review preventative medicine and let us focus on how to keep patients healthy now and in the future.
Q. What is a key challenge you face in offering comprehensive care for your patients? A. Being able to convince patients about the merits of staying ahead of their care and preventing versus reacting. For example, getting preventative vaccines (pneumonia, shingles) can be lifesaving and make quality of life better.
Preventative testing (mammograms, bone density, colonoscopies, Pap smears, prostate exams) can allow for early disease detection and more opportunity to correct abnormalities or seek effective treatment.
Q. Are there any new treatments or technologies that you are particularly excited about in your field? A. For diabetic patients, continuous glucose monitoring has been a huge advancement in allowing patients the ability to check blood sugar instantly without pricking their finger. It allows for alerts on their phones and for family to be able to get alerts if they desire about their loved ones. All the new devices coming out to include watches, bands, etc. really give us some great information on patients’ health patterns from blood glucose to exercise, from heart rhythms and rates, to sleep.