Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center
Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center is committed to providing the highest quality of care while serving the communities of southwest Las Vegas.

Learn to Be Safer Around Dogs

Dogs are a big part of life for many families, and even people who don’t share their home with a dog still love to interact with them. Although dogs are generally loving companions, if you don’t know how to behave with them, it could lead to serious injuries that require emergency care. Increase your safety around dogs with this advice.

Train Your Dog

If you have a dog, training is an important responsibility. A well-trained dog is safer for your family at home and for the public when you take your dog out for a walk or to the park. Start training when your dog is very young by attending training classes, hiring a trainer, or even reading books or watching videos about training. If you don’t go to a training class, be sure to take your dog out to the dog park and other public places so that he or she becomes accustomed to interacting with other dogs and humans. Work on training exercises every day so that you stay in control of your dog.

Don’t Approach Strange Dogs

Never approach a loose dog or a dog you don’t know, even if the dog is on a leash with its owner. If you see an unknown, loose dog, stand still and avoid eye contact so you don’t appear to be challenging the dog. If you meet a new dog with his or her owner, ask for permission before approaching the dog, and let the dog sniff the back of your hand before you begin to pet it. If the dog seems anxious or aggressive, don’t try to pet him or her anyway. Instead, slowly and calmly back away.

Avoid Encroaching on a Dog’s Space

When you see a dog in a car or behind a fence, it can be tempting to try to interact with the dog. For some dogs, however, reaching into those areas can seem like a sign of aggression, and he or she may react to protect his or her space. Keep your hands to yourself to avoid the risk of being bitten.

If a dog injures you, the ER at Southern Hills Hospital and Medical Center has the treatments you need, from stitches to antibiotics. You can learn more about our hospital in Las Vegas by calling (702) 880-2700.

What Surgeries Can Be Performed Robotically?

Robotic surgery has a number of different applications across multiple disciplines. In each instance, it makes surgery less invasive and recovery times shorter, thanks to less blood loss and tissue disruption. With robotic surgery, surgeons can be more precise than ever before, since the robotic system eliminates even the most minute human hand quivering. Here is a look at some of the procedures that can be performed using robotic surgery.

Gallbladder Removal
Gallbladder stones and inflammation usually require the gallbladder to be removed. As Dr. Kevin Rayls, a general surgeon at Southern Hills Hospital and Medical Center, explains in this video, laparoscopic gallbladder means creating multiple incisions to remove the organ, while robotic gallbladder removal only requires one cut. As a result, patients have a lower risk of infection and experience less blood loss during surgery. They also have less post-operative pain because only a small amount of tissue was disrupted during the procedure.

Colorectal Surgeries
Multiple colorectal procedures can be performed with robotic surgery. Polyps and tumors can be removed robotically. It is also possible to remove all or part of the colon and rectum using robotic surgery. Robotic colorectal surgery can dramatically reduce the recovery time for these procedures compared to traditional, open surgery. Patient comfort is also improved when colorectal procedures are performed robotically.

Hernia Repair
If you have a hernia, your surgeon may recommend a robotic procedure to repair it. Studies into robotic hernia repair show that patients have shorter hospital stays, less pain, and a reduced risk of the hernia returning. Surgeons using a robotic system have to switch to open surgery less often than when performing a non-robotic, laparoscopic procedure.

Southern Hills Hospital and Medical Center is pleased to offer cutting-edge robotic surgery as an option for patients for a wide range of procedures. To find out if you are a candidate for robotic surgery in Las Vegas, call (702) 880-2700 for a referral to one of our surgeons.

Do Stroke Symptoms Differ for Women?

It is known that women experience heart attacks differently than men, but does the same hold true for strokes? Because getting emergency care quickly is essential for minimizing the loss of brain tissue during a stroke, recognizing the signs is essential. For women, the symptoms of a stroke are generally the same as they are for men, but getting women to recognize them and take action to get emergency care is the challenge. If you experience these symptoms of a stroke, this is the time to put yourself first and get the life-saving care you need.

Drooping on One Side of the Face
During a stroke, the part of the brain that controls muscles in the face may be affected. If this occurs, one side of the face may feel numb, and it may begin to droop. Although the drooping may be obvious simply by looking at someone, an easy way to tell for sure is to ask the person who could be having a stroke to smile. If the smile droops downward on one side, then he or she could be having a stroke.

Weakness on One Side of the Body
A stroke could also cause numbness and weakness on one side of the body. You may notice that someone who is experiencing a stroke looks like he or she is slumping to one side. You can also easily test this symptom by asking someone who could be having a stroke to raise their arms. If one arm drops downward while the other one is still raised, it could indicate a stroke.

Slurred Speech
Slurred speech is a classic stroke symptom. In addition to slurring words, some people may say things that are unintelligible, be unable to follow a conversation, or suddenly begin saying things that don’t make sense. This symptom is highly suggestive of a stroke and should be evaluated in the ER.

The Joint Commission Certified Primary Stroke Center at Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center provides cutting-edge stroke care to stop the destruction of brain tissue and minimize the long-term complications for patients. Contact us today at (702) 880-2700 for more information about stroke care in Las Vegas and other hospital services.

Exploring the Subtler Signs of Heart Attacks

Most people envision heart attacks as unmistakable emergencies that occur with intense chest pain. In reality, a heart attack can be much more subtle, and failing to recognize the symptoms could cause some people to delay seeking necessary emergency care. Learning the subtler symptoms of a heart attack could save your life or the life of someone you love. Commit these symptoms to memory and seek emergency care if they occur.

Extreme Fatigue
Many people feel exhausted most of the time, but when a heart problem is developing, the fatigue can become extreme. If you experience a dramatic increase in the amount of fatigue you are feeling, then consider seeing your doctor or going to the hospital. Look for signs like feeling fatigued even when you aren’t being active and getting exhausted after doing everyday activities, like making your bed. Note that many people who experience fatigue before a heart attack may also experience sleep disturbances and struggle to rest even when they are exhausted.

Shortness of Breath
Shortness of breath is never normal and should always be evaluated by a doctor. In some cases, becoming short of breath, especially when you lay down, could indicate a problem with your heart. If you suddenly become short of breath without being active or notice a marked decline in your exercise tolerance, consider seeing your doctor. Before a heart attack, many people also report sweating and feeling clammy for no reason.

Neck, Jaw, and Back Pain
Chest pain isn’t always the first kind of pain that occurs with a heart attack. In fact, some people, especially women, have heart attacks without experiencing chest pain at all. For these people, neck, jaw, and back pain may indicate a heart problem. If you have discomfort in these areas that gets worse when you are active and eases up while you rest, consider making an appointment with your doctor.

Any time you experience heart attack symptoms, go to Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center for emergency care. Our ER diagnoses and treats heart attacks quickly for the best possible patient outcomes. To learn more about emergency care in Las Vegas or other hospital services, please call (702) 880-2700.

How Menopause Increases a Woman's Risk of Heart Disease

Heart disease isn’t just a man’s problem. Women also face an increased risk as they age, particularly after menopause. By becoming aware of the increased chance of developing heart disease after menopause, women can take steps to remain heart-healthy. Why does menopause mark a turning point for women and their heart disease risk? Here is what you need to know.

Heart Disease and Menopause
Although menopause does not cause heart disease, there does appear to be a link between the onset of menopause and an increased risk. Doctors suspect that falling levels of estrogen may be to blame. Estrogen helps to keep the inner layers of blood vessel walls flexible, which assists in healthy blood flow. When estrogen levels decline during menopause, the blood vessels can become stiffer, and the risk of blood flow being disrupted increases. This may be the reason that a spike in the risk of heart attacks for women occurs about 10 years after menopause. Other changes in the body that occur after menopause also support a greater heart disease risk, including increased cholesterol, blood pressure, and triglycerides. Women who are overweight at the time of menopause and who smoke or eat an unhealthy diet have an even greater risk of experiencing heart problems.

Coping with the Risks
Although the risk of heart disease increases after menopause, there are many things women can do to protect their heart health. Start by embracing a healthy lifestyle, with physical activity on most days and a diet rich in healthy fats and fiber and low in added sugars. See your doctor regularly for checkups and carefully manage conditions that can contribute to heart disease, such as diabetes. If you smoke, talk to your doctor about strategies that can help you quit.

Get the heart care you need at Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center. From our physicians to our emergency care in Las Vegas, we can help you manage heart disease and live a healthier life. For more information about our hospital or a referral to one of our physicians, please call (702) 880-2700.

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