Browse Category: Wellness

Dr Hadi

Hadi Bhurgri, MD, Joins PCRMC Medical Group

The Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) Medical Group recently welcomed a new gastroenterologist, Hadi Bhurgri, MD, to the team. He began practicing at PCRMC in August.

Gastroenterology is a branch of medicine that deals with the study of disorders affecting a person’s digestive system, including the esophagus, stomach and intestines. Physicians who specialize in this field of medicine are sometimes referred to as GI (gastrointestinal) doctors.

Dr. Bhurgri finds this line of work to be very intellectually satisfying and challenging.

I get to see a wide variety of patients across all age groups,” he says. “I also like that I get to work with my hands.” He says PCRMC is well-equipped to handle most anything.

As a gastroenterologist, Dr. Bhurgri sees patients for a wide variety of general gastrointestinal conditions. “Some common GI complaints include heartburn, stomachache, dyspepsia (indigestion) or Barrett’s esophagus, (where the lining of the esophagus becomes damaged),” he says.

Dr. Bhurgri is trained in numerous general GI procedures, such as upper endoscopies and colonoscopies. He has special interests in diagnostic and therapeutic endoscopy, GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) gastroparesis and biliary pathology.

Dr. Bhurgri notes that there is no one-size-fits-all approach for patients with GI issues. “Everyone requires a tailored approach,” he says.

To keep patients’ digestive tracts healthy, specific diets or changes to the types of foods patients eat may help in certain cases. Some GI doctors work with nutrition specialists to help patients.

Dr. Bhurgri was born and raised in Pakistan. “I always had an interest in science and medicine, growing up,” he says. “Both of my parents were physicians and held academic appointments as pathologists, and even my grandfathers on both my mom’s and dad’s sides of the family were doctors.”

In 2008, he earned his medical degree from Aga Khan University in Karachi, Pakistan. Dr. Bhurgri then came to the United States for post-graduate medical training. In the U.S., Dr. Bhurgri studied at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Michigan, and Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia, as a visiting medical student.

In 2014, he completed a residency program in internal medicine followed by a fellowship specializing in gastroenterology, both at Rutgers University’s New Jersey Medical School in Newark, New Jersey.

To learn more about gastroenterology, or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Bhurgri, visit or call 573-364-9000.

joel leon becerril

Joel Leon-Becerril, MD, Joins PCRMC Physicians Group

The Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) Physicians Group welcomes Joel Leon-Becerril, MD, as a new urologist. He joins fellow urologist Geoff Lloyd-Smith, MD.

Urologists specialize in treating conditions or diseases in the male and female urinary tract and male reproductive organs.

Dr. Leon-Becerril was born and raised in Mexico. While his father was a general practitioner, Dr. Leon-Becerril credits a fascination in science and the chance to help others as to what gave him the spark to become a doctor. “It was the perfect combination,” he says.

Dr. Leon-Becerril graduated from medical school at the Panamerican University in Mexico. He then studied general surgery for two years as an intern and a resident at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas. He recently completed a four-year urology residency program at the University of Texas.

Dr. Leon-Becerril can treat patients with various urological conditions from kidney stones to benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), which occurs when the prostate enlarges, as well as erectile dysfunction, kidney cancer, bladder cancer, testicular cancer and penile cancer. He brings 5 years of experience to the PCRMC team.

Dr. Leon-Becerril has always liked using and learning about technology, and in this area of medicine, technology plays a big part in many of the procedures he performs.

Dr. Leon-Becerril is trained in laparoscopic surgery, which is a minimally invasive form of surgery. In fact, during his residency, Dr. Leon-Becerril was awarded an achievement naming him the best resident of the laparoscopic surgery program at the University of Texas Health Science Center by the Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons.

He also has been trained in adrenalectomies, in which one or both of the adrenal glands are surgically removed, and partial nephrectomies, in which part of the kidney is removed.

To keep patients’ urinary systems healthy, Dr. Leon-Becerril recommends people stay hydrated. “This can prevent the formation of kidney stones,” he says. Additionally, if patients feel there is any tension in their urinary tracts or notice blood in their urine, they need to seek the help of a urologist.

Dr. Leon-Becerril has been married to his wife, Alicia, for six years, and they have three children, Antonio, Sarah and Joel.

For more information or to make an appointment with one of PCRMC’s urologists, visit or call 573-364-9000.


The Pros and Cons of Using Antibiotics

Antibiotics can help you, but they also can cause harm in some cases. People often get antibiotics for the following health issues:

  • Bladder infections
  • Sinus infections
  • Eczema (itchy, red rashes)
  • Colds and runny noses
  • Wounds or torn skin from surgery

However, antibiotics do not work for infections caused by viruses, like the common cold. That is why you should talk to your healthcare provider to make sure you only use antibiotics for the right reasons — and at the right time.

Before you take antibiotics, ask if you really need them. Also, ask about the risks and benefits of antibiotics.

While antibiotics can prevent and treat some infections, they can cause the following risks:

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Allergic reactions, such as blisters, rashes, and face or throat swelling
  • Damage to nerves and tendons
  • Vaginal infections

It is important to remember that if you do take antibiotics, make sure to take the full amount you were prescribed.

However, if you use antibiotics too much or when you do not need them, they may not work for you someday. This is called “antibiotic resistance.”

Consumer Reports suggests the following ways to use fewer antibiotics and lower your risks of infections:

  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Get your vaccines and flu shots.
  • Ask if you can wait a few days before starting antibiotics. Then, call or visit your healthcare provider again to see if you really do need them.
  • If you are in the hospital, make sure everyone washes their hands when they come to see you.

 5 Questions to Consider Before Taking Antibiotics:

  1. Do I really need antibiotics?
  2. What are the risks and side effects?
  3. Are there simpler, safer options?
  4. How much do they cost?
  5. How do I take antibiotics so they’re safe and effective?

Longtime PCRMC Volunteer Named Mental Health Hero

Audrey Huddleson, a longtime volunteer with the Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) Auxiliary & Volunteer Services, was named a Mental Health Hero by the Missouri Behavioral Health Counseling Associates.

Huddleson was the July 2017 winner of the award presented by Tabitha Hundt, (left) PLPC, Project Heroes coordinator with the Missouri Behavioral Health Counseling Associates.

The honor recognized Huddleson for having high standards as a volunteer, for supporting others in their fight against cancer and for being an exceptional role model for the community.

Hundt called Huddleson “an inspirational person,” noting that she has volunteered with PCRMC for 35 years.

Huddleson said she was surprised and honored to receive this recognition.

The public can nominate Mental Health Hero award recipients, and the Missouri Behavioral Health Counseling Associates clinical directors and board of directors choose a winner each month.


Forrest Rackham, PsyD, Joins PCRMC Medical Group

Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) is pleased to announce the addition of psychologist Forrest Rackham, Psy.D, to the PCRMC Medical Group.

Dr. Rackham is a licensed clinical psychologist and has been practicing since 2012.

He earned his Doctor of Psychology in clinical psychology and his Master of Science from Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, Georgia. He received a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio.

His special interests include acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), hypnosis, rural psychology, primary care psychology and the integration of psychotherapy and spirituality.

As a psychologist, Dr. Rackham said he enjoys connecting with individuals.

“I get to see people become more self-reliant,” he said. “Also, patients allow me to be part of their journey toward behavioral changes and becoming more fulfilled with their lives.”

Before coming to PCRMC, Dr. Rackham worked at community health centers in Virginia and Iowa.

As for the best advice Dr. Rackham gives his patients, it’s quite simple: just breathe. “Stressors can make our bodies tense, and breathing helps us slow down and focus,” he said.

To learn more about Dr. Rackham, or to make an appointment, please visit or call 573-364-9000.