Good Samaritan Hospital
Through leadership in research and adopting the latest technological and clinical practices, Good Samaritan Hospital offers excellent medical care for the people of Silicon Valley.
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Are You Suffering from a Cold or the Flu?


Cold and flu symptoms can be similar, but it is important to know which one you have, as the flu can sometimes lead to complications that require emergency care. The only way to get a definitive diagnosis is to visit your doctor for a flu test, but by paying attention to your symptoms, you can decide if a trip to see your physician is warranted. Consider this comparison of cold symptoms versus flu symptoms to decide which seems more closely aligned with how you’re feeling.

Cold Symptoms
Colds typically start with a nagging sore throat that persists for a day or two and then clears up, only to be replaced a runny nose, congestion, and a cough that usually appears four or five days after the sore throat appeared. Initially, the mucus that drains from your nose with a cold is clear and watery, and as the illness progresses, it becomes thick and dark. Most adults don’t experience a fever with a cold, but some children might. Colds usually last for about a week, though some of the symptoms, such as a cough, can linger for longer. Because you are contagious during the first three days of symptoms, you should stay home and rest.

Flu Symptoms
Flu symptoms are similar to those that occur with a cold, but they usually come on faster and are much more severe. The flu is also more likely to cause muscle aches, headaches, and extreme exhaustion. Fevers are much more common with the flu, though not everyone gets them. Some forms of the flu, such as swine flu, may also cause vomiting and diarrhea. Flu symptoms last for longer than cold symptoms. Although the worst of the symptoms are gone within five days, many people feel run down from the flu for weeks.

If you have the flu and experience shortness of breath, chest tightness, or a spiking fever, visit the ER at Good Samaritan Hospital. Because the flu can lead to serious complications like pneumonia or a cardiac crisis, getting fast emergency care in San Jose is important. You can find out more about our hospital services by calling (888) 724-2362.


New Year, New Healthy You

A new year offers one of the best opportunities to give your lifestyle a healthy makeover. Whether you want to focus more on cardiac care, lose some excess weight, or learn to control your stress levels, the new year is the time to kick-start your efforts. Keep in mind that setting small, attainable goals adds up to big, sustainable changes, so decide what you want to accomplish and lay the groundwork to get there. Here are some easy steps you can take to remake your health this year.

See Your Doctor
Preventative health care can have a tremendous impact on your well-being. Make seeing your primary care doctor a priority, so you can have a checkup and learn all of your important health numbers, such as your cholesterol, blood pressure, weight, and blood sugar levels. Your doctor can also offer advice about how to control chronic health conditions, monitor the progress of your treatment plans, and help to catch potentially serious health problems in their early, most treatable stages. See your doctor once annually, or as recommended.

Rethink Your Eating Habits
Instead of thinking in terms of being on or off a diet, take steps towards making healthy eating a lifestyle. Eat lean meats, whole grain carbohydrates, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats. Keep an eye on portion control, and limit your intake of added sugar and salt. These simple tips can pay dividends for cardiac care, high blood pressure management, and your waistline, without leaving you feeling deprived.

Get More Rest
Most people live busy lives that leave less time for sleep than ever before. However, your body needs rest to repair itself each day. When you don’t sleep, you increase your risk of obesity, heart disease, depression, memory loss, and even auto accidents. Make adequate sleep a non-negotiable part of your schedule.

Let Good Samaritan Hospital be part of your plan for a healthier lifestyle. We provide weight loss surgery, a network of physicians, and cardiac care in San Jose to help you have your healthiest year yet. To request a referral to one of our physicians, please call (888) 724-2362.


Why Are Falls More Common in the Holidays?

For ER doctors, the holidays are synonymous with fall injuries. During the season, the risk of falling increases for a number of different reasons, which means more people need emergency care for falls during the holidays than at any other time of the year. Here is a look at why falls are so common during the holidays, and steps you can take to prevent them.

Decorating Dangers
Decorating is a major contributor to the increase in falls during the holiday season. Whether it is taking risks by climbing up an unstable ladder or combining spiked eggnog with decorating activities, creating a festive environment could leave you in need of emergency care. You can protect yourself by using your ladder on a flat, stable surface and staying off the top two rungs. Always have someone nearby when you’re on a ladder in case you need help. Wait until the decorating is done to toast your efforts instead of drinking while decorating.

Rearranged Furniture
Many people rearrange furniture during the holidays to make room for decorations, and the new layout could increase the risk of falls. It is easy to fall over items that have been placed in what was once a clear pathway. If you move furniture, make sure everyone in your home is aware of the changes you’ve made, and take care when you’re navigating the space.

Cluttered Spaces
Clutter is common during the holidays, as decorations, wrapping supplies, and luggage crowd walkways in your home. Be mindful of the fall risks that clutter creates, and keep the floor as clear as possible. Make sure there are clear paths throughout the home for your family. Even a small bag or gift box can lead to a fall that causes injuries and a trip to the ER.

If you or your loved one falls victim to a holiday fall, get the help you need at Good Samaritan Hospital. From emergency care in our ER to orthopedic inpatient and outpatient care, we can get you back to your holiday festivities fast. Contact our hospital in San Jose at (888) 724-2362 to learn more.


Create an Action Plan for Your Holiday Stress

Sometimes, the biggest surprise of the holiday season isn’t an unexpected gift but rather uninvited stress. Stress does more than make your days hectic. It can affect your body in a number of ways and is part of the reasons there is a spike in the demand for emergency care during the holidays. If you are already under cardiac care for heart disease, holiday stress can be particularly damaging. The best way to cope with holiday stress is to create an action plan for preventing it. Keep your stress levels manageable and your holidays happy this year with this advice.

Stay Active
The demands of the holiday season can make it tempting to let your usual workout plan fall by the wayside, but you need it now more than ever. Staying active will help curb stress by boosting your feel-good chemicals and giving you the chance to focus on yourself. Even if you don’t have time for your usual routine, set aside 30 minutes each day to get active. You’ll have more energy, less stress, and protect your heart.

Share the Load
Instead of trying to take charge of every part of holiday planning, share the demands with family and friends. You may be surprised how many people are willing to help but just don’t know how. Be specific about what you need, and decide in advance who will do which tasks. You can then focus on the things you need to get done and rest assured that other things you usually take on are in safe hands.

Say No
Holiday parties and other activities aren’t fun if they are obligations. Don’t say yes to every invitation that comes your way if they are creating stress. Managing your schedule so that you have ample time to do everything you want to do, including rest, allows you to truly enjoy the season instead.

If holiday stress is overwhelming you, behavioral health services at Good Samaritan Hospital can help. Our hospital also provides emergency care in Las Vegas throughout the season to keep you and your loved ones healthy. Call us today at (888) 724-2362 to request a physician referral or for more information.

When Should Your Headache Be Treated in the ER?

Headaches are so common that they may not seem like medical emergencies, but in reality, they can be. How do you know when a headache can be treated at home and when you should seek emergency care? These signs indicate that you should consider going to the hospital because of your headache symptoms.

It is the worst headache you’ve ever had.
A sudden, severe headache can indicate a serious health problem, such as an aneurysm or stroke, so it should be evaluated in emergency care as soon as possible. Although a severe headache can have many causes, it’s important to take action quickly when you have a headache that is not normal for you and that causes a significant amount of pain. If you are experiencing an aneurysm or stroke, getting emergency care could save your life.

You have a head injury.
Anytime you have a head injury, you could have a concussion that could cause long-term consequences if it is not treated. You cannot always tell the severity of a concussion by the immediate symptoms that occur after an injury, so even if you have a minor headache, the brain injury could be severe. You may need emergency care after any kind of head injury, whether you experience a headache or not, to prevent future complications. As Dr. David Feldman of Good Samaritan Hospital explains in this video, untreated concussions can be very dangerous.

You have other symptoms.
Headaches that are accompanied by symptoms like confusion, vision problems, changes in speech, or weakness on one side of the body can indicate a stroke. A headache accompanied by nausea and neck pain can signal meningitis. Emergency care can be lifesaving in these circumstances, so don’t delay seeking treatment.

Good Samaritan Hospital in San Jose offers emergency care 24-hours daily for headaches, cardiac emergencies, and everything in between. Visit our ER when you’re concerned about your symptoms, or call our hospital today at (888) 724-2362 to learn more about our hospital services.


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