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.
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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.


Where Can Fibroids Grow in the Body?

Fibroids are abnormal growths that occur in the female reproductive system. Left untreated, they can cause pain, abnormal bleeding, and fertility issues. If you suspect you have fibroids, see your women’s health specialist for a diagnosis and to find out what treatments may work for you. Here is a look at some of the areas that can be affected by fibroids.

Uterus
Uterine fibroids are the most common form of fibroids by far. Fibroids can form in many different locations in the uterus, including the lining and along the outside of the uterus. Some fibroids in the uterus are small and don’t cause any symptoms. In other instances, fibroids can grow to be very large and cause significant discomfort and heavy menstrual bleeding. Often, uterine fibroids are affected by hormone changes and grow larger in size around the time of menstruation. When fibroids develop on the outside of the uterus and grow into the uterine cavity, they can also begin to affect other parts of the body, including the kidneys, bladder, stomach, and rectum.

Ovaries
Although they are less common than uterine fibroids, ovarian fibroids are also possible. Dr. Edmund Pack, an OBGYN at Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center, discusses the impact that these kinds of fibroids can have on fertility in this video. Fibroids can block the Fallopian tubes, interfering with ovulation and making it difficult to achieve a pregnancy.

Dealing with Fibroids
Many women don’t know that they have fibroids because they don’t experience any symptoms. If your fibroids are not causing a problem for you, then you may not need treatment. If you are experiencing pain, heavy bleeding, and other symptoms, consider seeing your doctor to find out if medications, minimally invasive procedures like ablation, or surgery could help you.

Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center is pleased to offer comprehensive health care for women, including OBGYN services and maternity care in Las Vegas . Get a referral to one of our women’s health providers today by calling (702) 880-2700.

Do You Need Antibiotics When You're Sick?

For many years, doctors prescribed antibiotics generously for a range of conditions, including very minor cases of infections. The outcome has been antibiotic overuse and the appearance of bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics. Although antibiotics can be an important part of treatment plans for many different conditions, taking them when they are not needed could be dangerous and leave you at risk for needing emergency care for an infection that won’t respond to medications. Before you get antibiotics for an illness, here is what you need to know about some of the risks of taking these medications unnecessarily and when antibiotics may be needed.

Antibiotics increase resistant infections and cause side effects.
When you take an antibiotic for a bacterial infection, the medication will cause most of the bacteria to die. However, some of the bacteria will inevitably survive, and these survivors can multiply and cause another infection that is made up of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. A resistant infection can be dangerous and extremely costly to treat. Most people with antibiotic-resistant infections have to stay in the hospital, and their treatment costs more than $40,000 more than the treatment for normal bacterial infections.

Antibiotics can cause side effects.
Antibiotics can also be accompanied by serious side effects. Because they indiscriminately kill bacteria, taking antibiotics kills the good bacteria in the body that protect your health. When taking antibiotics, many people experience diarrhea, vomiting, vaginal infections, and dangerous allergic reactions. About 14,000 people die annually from diarrhea that is caused by taking antibiotics.

Taking antibiotics only when needed reduces the risks.
Antibiotics are only effective at treating bacterial infections, so don’t take them if you have a viral infection. Many bacterial infections will improve on their own within a few days with home treatment. Reserve antibiotic use for serious infections that aren’t responding to other remedies. Aggressive use of antibiotics may also be necessary in people with weakened immune systems. Often, antibiotic ointments and drops can be more effective than oral antibiotics for skin, ear, and eye infections.

At Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center, we’re committed to providing the highest quality healthcare possible without the risk of unnecessary treatments. You can learn more about all of our hospital services, including emergency care, stroke care, and orthopedic surgery in Las Vegas, by calling (702) 880-2700.


How Do Emergency Medical Services Go Hand-in-Hand with Your Local ER?

Whenever anyone dials 911, the first people on the scene are the emergency medical services, or EMS, team. EMS providers give emergency care before you even get to your local hospital, and they work closely with the staff of the ER to ensure that you get the highest level of care as quickly as possible in an emergency situation. If you or someone you love has ever been taken to the hospital by ambulance, then you know how important EMS teams are to medical care. Here is a closer look how the EMS team and ER providers work together.

First-Response Care
When EMS teams arrive on the scene of a medical emergency, they are the first ones to assess the patient and provide care. The interventions performed by the EMS team can often be life-saving and may allow the patient to make it to the hospital to receive further emergency care. During the time the EMS team is giving care on the scene and in the ambulance, they can communicate with the ER physicians as needed to make decisions about the kinds of treatments they should provide.

Advance Notice
EMS staff can give the ER providers information about the condition of the patient they are transporting to the hospital, so that they can get set up to give care right away. In instances in which providing emergency care as soon as possible is critical, such as during a heart attack or stroke, this advance notice can save valuable time that would otherwise be spent setting up and making arrangements for tests and medications when the patient is already on site, further delaying his or her care.

Vital Signs Information
In the ambulance, EMS providers can monitor the vital signs of patients and give that information to the ER physicians to help them make care decisions. They can also place IV lines that can be used to deliver medication quickly. These time-saving measures can also improve emergency care outcomes.

The ER staff at Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center works closely with our local EMS providers to ensure that our patients get the best possible emergency care in Las Vegas. To find out more about our hospital or to request a referral to one of our physicians, please call (702) 880-2700.


Preventing Complications After Spine Surgery

Before you have spine surgery, your orthopedic surgeon will review your recovery plan with you. The aim of the recovery plan will be to assist you in getting back to your normal activities as soon as possible and help you avoid complications. During your spinal surgery recovery, keep these tips in mind to reduce the risk of post-surgical complications that could harm your health and delay your recovery.

Get Moving
Many people are surprised by how soon their orthopedic surgeon wants them to get out of bed and walk, but moving around has a number of benefits during your spinal surgery recovery. When you walk, you build up strength in muscles that may have gotten weaker because of the pain you were experiencing before surgery. It also helps to get your blood pumping, which not only speeds healing nutrients to the surgical site but also reduces the risk of blood clots. Blood clots, including dangerous deep vein thrombosis clots, are a significant risk after surgery when many people spend an extended period of time immobile.

Look to Your Lungs
Respiratory infections are another risk after spine surgery. General anesthesia and pain medications can interfere with your ability to breathe normally, which can starve your blood of oxygen and interfere with your recovery. After surgery, your orthopedic surgeon may give you a spirometer to measure how you are breathing and help you monitor if your breathing is improving. The recovery team may also ask you to perform certain exercises, and they may prescribe medications if you have an infection.

Know When to Call
Be alert to the signs of post-surgical complications so you can call your orthopedic surgeon if you see them. As PA Carey Seip explains in this video, call your doctor if your wound becomes red, hot, swollen, or develops drainage. You should also call if you experience a fever, have trouble breathing, or have chest pain. Catching an infection in its early stages after surgery is important to avoiding worse complications.

Your orthopedic surgeon in Las Vegas at Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center will help you prepare for spine surgery and will supervise your recovery to ensure that your procedure is a success. For a referral to one of our surgeons , please call (702) 880-2700.

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