Dear Sun Spots: I have used Sun Spots in the past for requesting donations for the homeless. The response from readers was so great that we had enough household goods to last for six months! Thank you readers.

Well, it’s that time again. We at Tri-County Mental Health Services, 1155 Lisbon St., are seeking household donations, in good working condition, again to help those needing it during the fall and winter months. We are looking for: bureaus and beds, couches, kitchen chairs and tables, (sets if you have them), recliners in good working condition, silverware and pans.

Any donations, please call Angela Plourde at 783-4663, ext. 317. Thanks again. – Angela Plourde, Lewiston.

Dear Sun Spots: I have enjoyed researching my family history for many years. I am looking for descendants of the following people who lived in the Lewiston-Auburn area, who would be willing to share information and pictures. Joseph and Alphonsine Paradis married in 1868 and their children: Marie Adele Paradis married Joseph Page in 1889; Joseph Patsy Paradis married Clara Pelletier in 1900; Marie Anna Paradis married Cyprien Jonny Michaud in 1897; Marie Odelie Paradis married Joseph Michaud in 1898; John Paradis married Lizzie Gauthier (they lived in Canton); Joseph Wilbrod Paradis married Gracia Baril in 1922; and Edgar Paradis married Josephine Simoneau in 1912 and Jessie Chretien in 1964. I will be happy to share any information I have gathered. I may be reached via e-mail or phone at [email protected] or 743-2057. – Jackie Governale, Norway.

Dear Sun Spots: A woman named Jennifer kindly called me regarding a previous Sun Spots request I had made about locating a couple of women who attended the Humane Society dog walk. Unfortunately, I couldn’t make out from where she was calling, and my answering machine ran out of memory in the middle of her message. Jennifer, if you wouldn’t mind calling me again, I would really appreciate it. I can be reached at 562-7602. Thank you. – Sandy Kaynor, Peru.

Dear Sun Spots: I saw a television commercial about a health care facility that uses a “pill cam” (a small camera encased in a capsule that is swallowed) as an alternative to the more invasive upper GI scope. Can’t remember where it was. Could you please find out? Thank You! – No Name, No Town.

Answer: Sun Spots checked in with Martha Davoli, of Public Information & Media Services at Maine Medical Center who says a pill camera for evaluating the esophagus does exist. She says according to Dr. G. Alex Millspaugh, this is not exactly an alternative to an upper endoscopy, because it is only designed to evaluate the esophagus rather than the complete upper GI tract (esophagus, stomach, and duodenum). Therefore, it may be appropriate for patients whose physicians are primarily concerned about disease of the esophagus. Millspaugh notes that patients who report difficulty swallowing are not good candidates for this test, and biopsies cannot be performed, so that some patients whose pill study is positive may need to undergo upper endoscopy anyway. In addition, Millspaugh notes that insurance companies are not paying for the test at this time. This last issue has limited use of the pill cam even in circumstances where it might otherwise be appropriate.

The pill camera evaluation is offered at Portland Gastroenterology; it is currently not being done at Maine Medical Center, according to Millspaugh.

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