• FAQs

  • Our physicians are asked health questions all the time. Below is a list of some of the more common questions they are asked along with the answers to the questions.

  • A family doctor is a physician who takes care of patients of all ages, from infants to grandparents. Family doctors treat a broad spectrum of conditions and are therefore trained in a number of medical areas, including endocrinology, neurology, pulmonary medicine, cardiology and others. Family physicians often serve as your primary care provider, which means they coordinate every aspect of your care. Patients often see their family doctors for annual exams, immunizations and routine health screenings as well as for help managing chronic long-term conditions, such as arthritis, asthma, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity. Family doctors are also often the first doctor a patient sees for an acute condition, such as the flu, an earache, a rash or a child’s schoolyard injury. While family doctors don’t perform major surgeries, they sometimes offer minor in-office surgical procedures, such as lacerations, skin lesion removal and care for sports injuries. Family doctors are trained in preventive care and believe in treating the whole person, body, mind and spirit. Because family physicians are often the first doctor you see for a health problem, they get to know you and your family well and understand your family medical history. This knowledge helps them to diagnose and treat you and facilitates informed referrals to specialists.
    In addition to medical school, family doctors complete a formal three-year residency program in which they study a full spectrum of medical disciplines, such as pediatrics, well-woman care, reproductive health, bone and joint health, mental and behavioral health, ear, nose and throat care, emergency medicine and much more.The American Board of Family Medicine requires that family doctors become recertified every six years. To remain certified, they must also complete a minimum of 150 hours of continuing medical education every three years.

    Dr. Grace and Dr. Drexelius with Centura Health Physicians Group – Grace Family Practice offer comprehensive health care services, including:

    • Adult annual physicals
    • Well-baby/child check-ups
    • Pediatric health care
    • Women's health care
    • Men’s health care
    • Senior health care
    • Well-adult genetic consultations for prevention
    • Care for acute illnesses, such as injuries, earaches, colds and flu 
    • Help managing chronic diseases, including diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, cardiovascular disease, and more
    • Preventive health programs, including advice on exercise and nutrition
    At Centura Health Physician Group – Grace Family Practice, we focus on providing a patient-centered medical home and on putting Centura’s core values into practice. These values include compassion, respect, integrity, spirituality, stewardship, imagination, and excellence. Ever mindful of these guiding principles, we continually strive to create a warm, welcoming atmosphere worthy of your trust. As part of Centura Health, we embrace Centura’s mission, vision and core values. {link: http://www.centura.org/body.cfm?id=307 [Link to mission/vision/values.]
    The Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) is an innovative program for improving primary care. Accreditation is awarded through The National Association for Quality Assurance (NCQA), an independent, not-for-profit organization. The rigorous PCMH standards focus on how practices can organize around the patient by working in teams to coordinate and track care over time. The standards call for partnerships between individual patients, their physicians, and when appropriate, the patient’s family.The PCMH model also defines standards for health information technology and scheduling with patient convenience in mind. A PCMH practice continually strives to improve the quality, effectiveness, and efficiency of patient care with a focus on meeting the patients’ needs first. The model also revolves around fostering trust between the patient and the entire care team and encourages patients to actively participate in their health care. The definition of a PCMH was laid out by the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American College of Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Osteopathic Association in the 2007 Joint Principles for the Patient-Centered Medical Home.
     Family medicine doctors are experts in preventative care. Dr. Grace and Drexelius believe that preventing a medical problem is better than having to overcome it. They can offer guidance on a number of preventive health topics, including nutrition and exercise, smoking cessation, stress reduction, and more. They also perform your yearly physical, which is one of the most important steps in preventative care.
    Centura Health Physicians Group – Grace Family Practice offers comprehensive women’s services, including well-woman exams, birth control consultations, reproductive health screenings, diagnosis and treatment of common female disorders, pre-operative assessments, risk stratification and more. We focus on supporting optimal women’s wellness and we encourage women to see us as their primary care physicians.
    Yes, our physicians Dr. Ann Grace and Dr. Richard Drexelius, are board certified in Family Medicine by the American Board of Family Medicine.
    We take great joy in caring for infants and children, from newborns through late teens. A focus on continuity of care helps us create effective life-long treatment plans that encompass preventive care, including family lifestyle and hereditary factors. When your infant or child comes to us for a physical exam, we establish both benchmarks and a foundation of knowledge for future care. Our board-certified physicians care for children with a wide spectrum of conditions, including earaches, injuries, colds, flu, sleep disorders, childhood obesity, diabetes, rashes, problems of the ear, nose and throat and more. We also offer referrals to specialists.

    A well-baby or well-child exam is an office visit to examine the overall health and development of your child. Your family doctor uses the well-baby exam to establish a baseline for future reference and to help identify problems early. The exam includes a complete physical examination so your doctor can record your child's height, weight, and other key measurements to determine if he or she meets normal developmental milestones. Your doctor may also check your child’s hearing and vision and give scheduled immunizations.

    A well-child exam is a good time for you to learn about normal development and other topics related to your child’s health, such as nutrition, sleep, safety, and common childhood diseases. We encourage you to take an active role in your child’s health care and we welcome your questions. We advise patients to jot down their questions and bring them to their child’s appointment so they remember to ask. We’re also available to answer your questions by phone at 720-528-3559.

    According to the National Institutes of Health, you should schedule your baby’s first appointment two to three days after you return home (for breastfed babies). Or schedule an appointment when your baby is two to four days old (for every baby who leaves the hospital before he or she is two days old). If you are an experienced parent, your family doctor may extend your appointment out until your baby is one to two weeks old.

    After your baby’s first visit, schedule appointments as follows:

    • By 1 month (experienced parents can wait until 2 months)
    • 2 months
    • 4 months
    • 6 months
    • 9 months
    • 1 year
    • 15 months
    •  18 months
    • 2 years
    •  3 years
    •  4 years
    • 5 years
    • 6 years
    • 8 years
    • 10 years
    • Each year after that until age 21

    In addition to the above timeline, you should also schedule a doctor’s appointment if your baby or child appears sick or if you are worried about your baby's health or development.

    The Center for Disease Control (CDC) chart below shows the recommended immunization schedule for infants and children aged 0 through six years old in the United States for the year 2014. (Note: some vaccines are given in combination to lower the number of shots so ask your doctor exactly what your child needs.[pull in chart]For detailed information on the above CDC recommendations, including detailed footnotes about each immunization, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. [LINK: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/hcp/child-adolescent.html}

    Below you’ll find descriptions of the 2014 vaccines recommended by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) for infants through age 6 years old. For more information about childhood vaccines, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. {LINK: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/hcp/child-adolescent.html

    • HepB: protects against hepatitis B
    • DTaP: a combined vaccine that protects against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (whooping cough)
    • Hib: protects against Haemophilus influenzae type b
    • PCV: protects against pneumococcal disease
    • Polio: protects against polio (also called IPV vaccine)
    • RV: protects against the infections caused by rotavirus
    • Influenza: protects against influenza (flu)
    • MMR: protects against measles, mumps and rubella (German measles)
    • Varicella: protects against varicella (chickenpox)
    • HepA: protects against hepatitis A

    Your doctor can determine if your child is obese by using a formula to calculate his or her body mass index (BMI). The formula uses the child's weight and height and an age- and sex-specific percentile for BMI. The BMI is then compared to standards for age and sex established by the Center for Disease Control (CDC). Although this method doesn’t measure body fat directly, it does provide a reliable indicator of body fat for most children and teens.

    • Overweight: your child is considered overweight if he or she has a BMI that is at or above the 85th percentile and below the 95th percentile when compared to children of the same age and sex.
    • Obesity: your child is considered obese if he or she has a BMI that is at or above the 95th percentile when compared to children of the same age and sex.For more information about body mass index and BMI charts, visit the CDC. [LINK http://www.cdc.gov/growthcharts/cdc_charts.htm]

    An adult physical is an office visit to examine your overall health and determine whether you are up to date on important health screenings and immunizations. An annual exam is an important preventive measure because your family doctor can often identify problems early when they’re easier to treat. For men, an annual exam may include a testicular exam to check for tenderness or lumps, plus a prostate exam to check for abnormal size or suspicious growths. For women, the annual exam often includes a breast exam to check for lumps, plus a pelvic exam and Pap smear.

    Starting at age 50, both men and women are advised at their annual exams to get fecal occult blood testing or a colonoscopy to monitor colon health. Your family doctor is trained to identify risk factors to your health, such as stress, headaches, suspicious moles, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, aches and pains, poor nutrition and more. Once the problem is identified, your family doctor can create a comprehensive treatment plan. The treatment plan may include a combination of preventive measures, medical treatments, including referral to a specialist, and medications to cure or minimize the negative impact of your condition.

    Medical genomics (also called medical genetics), is a specialty that focuses on the use of genetic information to diagnose and treat hereditary disorders. A physician who practices medical genomics may be certified in multiple clinical specialties, such as clinical genetics, the practice of medicine with a focus on genetic disorders and clinical cytogenetics, a laboratory-based specialty that seeks to detect and analyze chromosomal abnormalities.

    Hundreds of disorders are hereditary, including certain types of breast and colon cancer, hemophilia, Down syndrome, inherited clotting problems, Huntington’s disease, muscular dystrophies, sickle cell anemia, cystic fibrosis, and many more. As researchers learn more about how certain genes influence disease, they are also learning how to employ effective preventive strategies.

    At Centura Health Physician Group – Grace Family Practice, we have a special interest in genetics and would be happy to consult with well adults about the role of genetic information in preventive health. Our ultimate goal is to support your best health through a trusting, long-lasting relationship.

    Be sure to tell your doctor about any current and past health issues or concerns. At Porter Primary Care, we encourage you to take an active role in your health care.Examples of information to share with your doctor include:

    • How you’re feeling and what you’ve observed about your condition. For example, if you have a stuffy nose, it’s helpful to note the color and consistency of your mucus. This may help your doctor differentiate a cold from the flu. Or if you’re feeling nauseous, note when you experience the nausea, such as with an empty stomach, after taking medication, immediately after meals, etc. It’s important to observe details surrounding your condition so you can answer your doctor’s questions accurately and completely. 
    • Your health history, including previous surgeries, allergies to medications, hospitalizations and your family health history, such as relatives with cancer, cardiovascular disease or other conditions. Your family physician may also want to know the age at which your family member first became sick.
    • Personal information. Let your doctor know if you are feeling stressed or if your life has changed in a significant way, such as a divorce, a death in the family or the loss of a job.
    • Bring a list of medications and supplements you are currently taking and include their strength and how often you take them (example: 100 mg twice a day, 112 mcg once a day). Also jot down any side effects you may be experiencing.

    If you have past X-rays or test results, we encourage you to bring them to your appointment.

    A chronic disease is a long-term condition that often progress slowly over time, such as cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory diseases, cancer, diabetes and arthritis. Your family doctor can work with you to monitor and manage your chronic condition, including preventive measures, medications and referral to a surgeon or other specialist, if needed.
    An acute condition is a brief sudden condition, such as the flu, a heart attack, a broken bone or an asthma attack. Your family doctor is trained to treat acute conditions and to refer you to a specialist as needed. Compared to a chronic condition the term “acute” refers to a shorter timeframe, although the timeframe is relative to the condition. For example, the flu may last two weeks while an acute headache may last only one morning.

    ADHD is a behavioral disorder in children marked by inattentiveness, over-activity, impulsivity, or a combination. Almost all children show some of these behaviors at certain times, but ADHD lasts more than six months and creates problems for your child in school, in social situations and at home.

    ADHD is more common in boys than girls, and affects 3-5 percent of children in the United States. A diagnosis of ADHD is made after an expert determines your child’s behavior is outside the normal range for his or her age and development.

    If you suspect your child has ADHD, talk to your doctor to rule out other possible reasons for the behavior. Family doctors are trained to diagnose and treat both childhood and adult ADHD.

    In searching for a family doctor, consider the following questions:

    • Are your physicians board certified? ?(All of the physicians at Centura Health Physicians Group – Grace Family Practice are board certified)
    •  Do you accept my insurance? ?(Centura Health Physicians Group – Grace Family Practice accepts most insurance).
    • What are your office hours? ?(Centura Health Physicians Group – Grace Family Practice is open Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
    • What hospital are you affiliated with? ?(Centura Health Physicians Group – Grace Family Practice is affiliated with Littleton Adventist Hospital)
    • How many doctors are in your practice? ?(Centura Health Physicians Group – Grace Family Practice includes two doctors: Dr. Ann Grace and Dr. Richard Drexelius)

    Do you include preventive care as part of your treatment plan??(Centura Health Physicians Group – Grace Family Practice places an emphasis on preventing disease by supporting healthy lifestyles, regular health screenings and patient advocacy.)

    Yes, Centura Health Physicians Group – Grace Family Practice believes it is far better to prevent a disease than to have to treat it. We incorporate preventive care into our medical practice at four levels. At the primary level, we help prevent disease by supporting healthy lifestyle measures, such as smoking cessation, weight loss, exercise, nutrition and stress reduction. At the secondary level, we help identify disease early with health screenings and educational support. At the third level, we help reduce the negative impact of disease by decreasing complications and improving function. At the fourth level, we serve as a patient advocate within the health care system and offer advise on treatment options.
    We are conveniently located just south of Arapahoe Road and Holly.  Our address is 6909 South Holly Circle, Centennial, CO 80112
    To schedule an appointment, call our office at 720-528-3559 or complete our online registration form [LINK TO REQUEST AN APPT FORM].  Our office hours are Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
    Center for Disease Control (CDC), Familydoctor.org, American Academy of Family Physicians, Medline, ADAM, National Institutes of Health (NIH), World Health Organization