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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Managing ongoing chest pain symptoms

Chest pain is a well-known sign of a heart attack, but there are dozens of other problems that could be causing it. These range from panic attacks and heartburn to ulcers and infections. Your family physician or cardiac care specialist can recommend treatment options for managing ongoing or chronic chest pain. Of course, patients should always seek emergency care if they suddenly develop chest pain, just in case it really is a heart attack. At Good Samaritan Hospital, a modern cardiac care hospital, our emergency care physicians are available 24/7 to help you.

Managing angina

Angina is the symptom of pain or pressure in the chest. Most often, it’s the result of coronary artery disease. The chest pain occurs when the blood flow to the heart decreases. A cardiac care specialist can recommend an appropriate treatment plan for angina, which usually includes medications. Lifestyle changes to prevent coronary artery disease can also help you prevent angina. When you watch this featured video, you’ll hear an emergency care physician explain some of the most effective habits to prevent chest pain. They include:

  • Quit smoking
  • Exercise safely
  • Eat a nutritious, balanced diet
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Manage underlying conditions like high blood pressure

Controlling heartburn

The pain of heartburn can be intense. It’s often mistaken for a heart attack. If you experience frequent heartburn, consider talking to your doctor. If left untreated, more serious medical problems can develop. To prevent episodes of heartburn, try the following:

  • Eat smaller meals
  • Avoid lying down after eating
  • Avoid spicy and fatty foods
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Sleep on an incline
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Reduce or avoid caffeine

Coping with panic attacks

Panic disorder is a mental health issue that can cause episodes of severe physical symptoms. These can mimic a heart attack. You may experience:

  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Sweating
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Nausea
  • Rapid heart rate

These symptoms can be frightening. It’s a good idea to seek emergency care to rule out a potential heart attack. If you are diagnosed with panic disorder, there are effective treatments available, including medications and psychotherapy. You might also try the following:

  • Reduce caffeine
  • Get enough sleep
  • Exercise regularly
  • Practice stress management
  • Join a support group

The health and quality of life of our patients are our highest priorities here at Good Samaritan Hospital. As an accredited Chest Pain Center, our state-of-the-art hospital in San Jose provides specialized cardiac care for patients of all ages. Call 911 for emergency care or call (888) 724-2362 to speak with a registered nurse at our hospital.


Is It Safe to Drive While You're Pregnant?

When most women think about being in the car when pregnant, they think about the rush to the maternity hospital when labor begins and not about their runs to the grocery store and work during their pregnancies. In reality, driving while you are pregnant can carry some extra risks. Fortunately, the power to reduce your chances of having an accident is in your hands. Get the facts about driving while pregnant and how you can protect yourself and your baby.

Driving Dangers During Pregnancy
The reason that maternity doctors are concerned about the risk of driving during pregnancy is the results of a Canadian study that show that the chances of having an auto accident increases by about 42% during the second trimester of pregnancy. Accident risk remains about the same as before pregnancy during the first trimester and normalizes again in the third trimester. After labor and delivery, a woman’s chance of having a car accident falls lower than it was before becoming a mother.

Reasons for Second-Trimester Accidents
Although the study did not look at reasons for an increased number of accidents during the second trimester, doctors have their suspicions. During this period, hormonal changes can cause intense fatigue, nausea, stress, and brain fog. As a result, reaction times can be delayed and driver distraction becomes an issue. During this time, women have about the same risk of an accident as someone with sleep apnea.

Ways to Reduce Accident Risk
Although the hormonal changes that occur during the second trimester of pregnancy are unavoidable, there are things mothers-to-be can do to cut their chances of having problems behind the wheel. Just being aware of the risk can help you to be more careful on the road. Pay attention to how you’re feeling, and if you’re fatigued or feeling unwell, don’t drive.

At Good Samaritan Hospital we provide comprehensive maternity care, including labor and delivery, in San Jose. Find out what it is like to have your baby in our birthing center by calling (888) 724-2362 or schedule a tour of our birth suites.


How Are Eye Injuries Treated in the ER?

Eye injuries always have the potential to be serious, so you should seek emergency care when one occurs, even if it seems minor. If you delay treatment, you run the risk of damaging the eye further and causing long-term complications. Here is a look at some common eye emergencies and how they are treated in the ER.

Corneal Abrasion
Corneal abrasions occur when the cornea is scratched by a foreign object in the eye, poorly fitting contacts, chemical exposure, or excessive rubbing. When an abrasion occurs, you may experience pain, sensitivity to light, blurred vision, and a persistent feeling that you have something stuck in your eye. In the ER, the doctor may prescribe antibiotic eye drops or ointments to prevent infection. You may also need eye drops to ease the pain, and if you are having problems with light sensitivity, your doctor may tape your eye. As your eye heals, avoid wearing contacts and rubbing your eyes.

Orbital Blowout Fracture
An orbital blowout fracture occurs when one or more of the bones of the obit that protects the eye and holds it in position are broken. Typically, this kind of fracture occurs when something hits the eye with force. Blowout fractures can be serious and need immediate emergency care. If you are not experiencing any vision problems and the fracture is minor, the doctor may prescribe decongestants to reduce the backup of blood and other fluids in the sinuses and steroids to reduce swelling. If the fracture is severe or if you are having any vision difficulties, you will need surgery to repair the injury.

Iritis
Iritis refers to inflammation of the iris. It can occur as the result of an injury, such as a poke in the eye, or because of an underlying medical condition. If you have iritis, you may experience significant pain, blurry vision, and headaches. Iritis is typically treated with medicated eyedrops that reduce inflammation and reduce muscle spasm so that the iris can heal. Treating any underlying condition that is contributing to the iritis can also help.

When you need emergency care in San Jose, choose Good Samaritan Hospital. We provide emergency care for patients of all ages around the clock with access to the full scope of our hospital services. To learn more, please call (888) 724-2362.


What Are Some Common Causes of Skin Allergies?

There are a number of different triggers for skin allergies, and these vary from person-to-person. In some cases, these reactions can be easily managed at home, while in other cases, emergency care may be necessary. Here is a closer look at some common skin allergies triggers and what you should do if you experience symptoms.

Plants
Poison ivy is the plant most people think of when they think of skin rashes, but a number of plants contain oils that can cause allergic reactions in some people. Plants can cause raised and flat rashes, sores that weep, itching, and blisters. These types of rashes are often made worse when people touch them and then touch another part of the body, spreading the irritating oils. These kinds of skin rashes are often manageable at home, but if the face is affected, the rash is painful or has bumps that appear infected, or covers a large portion of the body, seek emergency care. As Dr. David Feldman of Good Samaritan Hospital explains in this video, you should get emergency care any time you are concerned about the symptoms of an allergic reaction, even if you aren’t sure how serious it is.

Food
If you have a food allergy, exposure to the allergen could cause skin symptoms. Hives and skin rashes are most common with food allergies, and they are generally in response to eggs, milk, nuts, shellfish, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, and soy. Food allergies can be especially serious, as they can lead to anaphylaxis, so seek emergency care if you experience a reaction.

Medication
Sometimes, a medication can cause a skin allergy. Topical medications are common culprits, but oral medications can also be to blame. These kinds of skin allergies can include rashes and hives. As with food allergies, the reactions can be serious and may require medical care.

Don’t suffer in silence with a skin allergy or other allergic reactions. Visit the ER at Good Samaritan Hospital for acute care or call our hospital in San Jose to get a referral to an allergy specialist for chronic conditions. You can reach out hospital by calling (888) 724-2362.


Spotlight on Dog Walking Injuries and How to Avoid Them

Walking your dog is great for your cardiovascular health, helps you maintain a healthy weight, and is fun for both you and your pooch. However, walking your dog can also end in a trip to the ER if you fall victim to any of a number of common dog walking injuries. Here is a look on some of the common ways people get injured when walking their dogs and what you can do to reduce your risk of needing emergency care.

Common Dog Walking Injuries
Many dog walking injuries are caused by the leash. Retractable leashes are particularly problematic. The cord portion of these leashes moves very fast and can cause cuts and even finger amputations. People often experience friction burns from the cords as well. For any kind of leash, the risk of getting tangled in the leash and falling is also high and can cause falls that lead to orthopedic injuries. Dogs who pull on the leash can also drag walkers down, causing lacerations, facial injuries, and broken bones. Tendon and ligament strains and tears, sprains, and shoulder dislocations are all possible when you walk your dog as well.

Ways to Reduce the Risk of Injury
You can dramatically reduce the chances of suffering from an injury and needing emergency care on a dog walk with a few simple steps. First, walk with your dog, rather than riding on a bike, skateboard, or rollerblades while holding the leash. Always go out in sturdy shoes that are appropriate for the terrain and the weather. Don’t wrap the leash around your hand multiple times, which could lead to a spiral fracture if your dog pulls too hard. Pass on retractable leashes and instead walk you dog on a shorter leash that gives you more control and is less likely to make you trip. These strategies will ensure that walking your dog is healthy for you and your pet, instead of dangerous.

If an injury does occur, you can get emergency care in San Jose any time of the day or night at Good Samaritan Hospital. You can learn more about our hospital services or request a referral to a specialist by calling (888) 724-2362.


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