July NIU STEM Café explores harnessing the power of information to manage disease and promote health

Cancer, AIDS and other serious diseases were considered fatal until very recently. Although not all of these illnesses have cures, people with these and other chronic illnesses are living longer and fuller lives. What scientific and medical advances are helping people to live longer with serious illness? How have we learned to better manage disease and, in some cases, prevent disease progression? What interventions are available to promote health while managing a chronic condition?

Jeanne Isabel, associate professor and chair of Health Studies

Students, staff and community members will be able to find out more at the next NIU STEM Café with speaker Jeanne Isabel, associate professor and chair of Health Studies at Northern Illinois University.

Isabel has more than 40 years of experience in the clinical laboratory field, including more than eight years of international practice, and she has been active in Medical Laboratory Science education for the last 30 years. Her current research activities include a study of prediabetes in Belize. Dr. Isabel is a consultant for the DeKalb County Health Department and collaborates with faculty and healthcare providers on current health topics.

At the STEM Café, she plans to discuss a range of topics relevant to all of us who are trying to stay healthy or manage a chronic condition, including methods for early detection, new treatment strategies and the role of telemedicine. She’ll also share information about the current state of a variety of diseases such as TB, stroke and leukemias.

But perhaps one of the most surprising and important topics will be Dr. Isabel’s discussion of how to harness the power of information to promote health and manage disease. She’ll share tips for how to interpret laboratory results, investigate disease states and progression, and access the information necessary to make informed healthcare decisions.

“I would like attendees to have a clear vision of how to research a disease and utilize the best information available,” Isabel says. “People may be surprised by the number of volunteers who give their time to provide assistance for interpretation of laboratory results.”

The STEM Café will take place on Wednesday, July 10, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Fatty’s Pub and Grille, 1312 W. Lincoln Hwy in DeKalb. Food and drinks will be available for purchase throughout the presentation, but guests should arrive early for best seating.

NIU STEM Cafés are sponsored by NIU STEAM and are designed to increase public awareness of the critical role that STEM fields play in our everyday lives. For more information, contact Judith Dymond at 815-753-4751 or email jdymond@niu.edu.

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