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University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus

University of Colorado Denver, Newsroom
 

Biggest Loser ... and Gainer

Pharmacy student gives diabetes patient new life strategy


​by
Alex Rodriguez, 4th-year Pharmacy Student

For 65-year-old Rex Vaughn, meeting pharmacy student Julie Bohm was the impetus he needed to change his life.

Wearing size 48 blue jeans, weighing 250 pounds and diagnosed with diabetes and myriad other conditions, Vaughn was “at a dead end.” Today, he is a healthy 180 pounds, has controlled his diabetes, eliminated the need for many medications and “feels great!”

Vaughn credits the Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences and Jackisch Drug Diabetes Program for changing his life.

Fourth-year pharmacy student Alex Rodriguez obtains a blood pressure reading on patient Rex Vaughn.

“I was on my way to an early grave,” when his physician referred him to Jackisch Drug diabetes program. There he met fourth-year pharmacy student Julie Bohm, who quickly determined that a change was in order. After listening to Vaughn, she called his physician and requested he write him a prescription for an exercise program to lose weight.

Bohm said, “Rex, there is an exercise prescription at your doctor’s office. If you would pick it up, it will be there waiting. I encourage you to do it.”

“That call was the impetus I needed,” said Vaughn. Right then and there he decided it was time to make himself “a special project,” like the special projects he was assigned at work. From that point on, he followed a recommended diet, started an exercise program and learned more about diabetes and how to properly control his blood sugar.

Dropping 70 pounds and transforming himself had other positive outcomes, including lowering his blood pressure and cholesterol, as well as reducing pain and sleep issues—all influencing his doctor to discontinue some of his medications.

“Being referred to Jackisch Drug diabetes program was one of the best things that happened to me,” he said. “Without Jackisch, the School of Pharmacy and Julie, I don’t know if I’d be here today.”


Published: Dec. 3, 2012
Contact: stories@ucdenver.edu

 


 

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