• Recognizing the Early Signs of Alzheimer’s

    Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive, chronic condition for which there is no cure, but there are treatments available that can delay the worsening of symptoms. Beginning these treatments in the early stages of the disease provides the best opportunity to slow down the progression, so being vigilant about recognizing the symptoms is important. If you or someone you love is experiencing any of these early signs of Alzheimer’s disease, consider talking to your doctor.

    Forgetting Recently Learned Information
    Memory loss is one of the most common – and first – symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Typically, memories of recent information are affected, rather than long-term memories. For instance, in the early stages of Alzheimer’s, people may frequently forget the names of new people they meet or details of how to get to a new location. It is normal to experience some degree of age-related memory loss, but with Alzheimer’s disease, the loss of memory becomes so severe that it disrupts daily life.

    Trouble Completing Familiar Tasks
    With Alzheimer’s disease, people often struggle to perform tasks that are very familiar to them. They may forget how to operate the copier at work or how to make a favorite recipe. This is different from having to pull out the instructions to change your TV settings or forgetting how to set the clock on the microwave after the power goes out. Alzheimer’s disease creates consistent, dramatic disruption in task completion.

    Changes in Personality
    It’s common for people in the early stages of Alzheimer’s to be noticeably more depressed or anxious than before. They may become agitated more easily than normal, especially in unfamiliar surroundings. These personality changes are different from the irritation some older people display when their routines are disrupted.

    The renowned Nevada Neurosciences Institute at Sunrise Hospital & Medical Center in Las Vegas offers advanced diagnostics and treatment options for people with a range of neurological conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease, and cutting-edge stroke care. Call our hospital at (702) 233-5300 to request a physician referral to a neurologist or to learn more about the rest of our hospital services.

  • How Your Diet Can Prevent Diabetes from Running Your Life

    If you have diabetes, you know how difficult it can be to juggle all of the things you have to do to manage your disease. When you don’t follow your care plan closely, things can get even more challenging, as you experience complications that require emergency care . Fortunately, diabetes control is possible by following the treatment plan you create with your doctor and sticking to a diet that supports your health needs. Your endocrinologist can offer advice about a diet plan that is appropriate for you. These guidelines will also help you make diabetes-conscious food choices.

    Eat Healthy Carbs
    Many people who don’t understand diabetes think that people with the disease have to avoid sugar completely or can’t eat any carbs at all. In reality, a balanced diet is the right choice for people with diabetes, and that includes eating carbs. Aim for carbs that are high in fiber and good sources of whole grains, like brown rice, whole-wheat breads, and steel-cut oatmeal. When you have diabetes, you don’t have to avoid sugar all the time. After all, diabetes is a life-long disease that requires constant management. However, try to limit your intake of added sugars and simple carbs that can cause your blood glucose levels to soar.

    Cut Back on Fats
    When you have diabetes, your risk of cardiovascular disease is increased, so eating a heart-healthy diet can protect your health. Eat lean meats, like chicken and fish, and try cooking methods that don’t require added fats, such as steaming or grilling. Avoid trans fats, which are found in many pre-packaged baked goods.

    Manage Your Portions
    Controlling your weight helps with diabetes management, so be vigilant about portion size. Fill half of your plate with fruit and non-starchy veggies, one-quarter with lean protein, and one-quarter with carbs. Measure and weigh your food periodically to make sure your portion sizes aren’t creeping up.

    Sunrise Hospital & Medical Center has extensive services to help you manage your diabetes, from emergency care when an urgent need strikes to specialists who can treat all aspects of your disease. Get a physician referral in Las Vegas by calling our hospital at (702) 233-5300.

  • Make Your Kitchen Safer This Holiday Season

    Gathering around the table with family and friends is an integral part of the holiday season, but sometimes, these well-intentioned get-togethers can also be behind the spike in the need for emergency care that hospitals experience this time of year. Make sure your kitchen doesn’t become the source of a food poisoning outbreak among your family and friends with these simple safety tips.

    Stay Clean
    The bacteria that cause food poisoning will have a much more difficult time taking hold when you focus on cleanliness while cooking. Always wash your hands with warm water and soap before and after handling food. Thoroughly clean all surfaces that come into contact with food after preparing each item. Rinse fruits and veggies and scrub them with a produce brush before serving. Never rinse meat or poultry, which can cause bacteria to spread across your sink and countertops.

    Keep Foods Separate
    Avoid cross contamination by keeping foods separated appropriately. Keep raw foods and cooked foods apart, and don’t use the same cutting boards and utensils on raw foods that you do on cooked items. Make sure foods that won’t be cooked, like fruits, aren’t exposed to contamination from raw meat, poultry, or eggs. Use a new plate to serve cooked foods, rather than a plate that held any raw items.

    Watch the Temperature
    Cook meat and poultry to a safe temperature before serving, so that any bacteria the meat contains is killed. Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold before serving. Leftovers should go into the refrigerator within two hours of being served. If you’re not sure about the temperature of the foods you’re eating or don’t know how long something has been sitting at room temperature, throw it out instead of taking a chance.

    If food poisoning does occur this holiday season, Sunrise Hospital & Medical Center is here to help with emergency care in Las Vegas, around the clock, 365 days per year. Come to our ER to get the urgent care you need in an emergency, or call us at (702) 233-5300 to learn more about our services.

  • Why Is Pancreatic Cancer So Difficult to Treat?

    Pancreatic cancer has a reputation for being extremely difficult to treat. What makes it different from other, more treatable cancers, and what do you need to know to protect yourself and those you love? Here are the facts about pancreatic cancer, including the symptoms, why it’s so deadly, and what you can do about it.

    What is the outlook for pancreatic cancer patients?
    The statistics for pancreatic cancer demonstrate how serious the disease is. The National Cancer Institute estimates that there will be 53,070 new cases of pancreatic cancer in 2016 and 41,780 deaths from the disease. It accounts for approximately 3% of new cancer cases and 7% of cancer deaths. The five-year survival rate for the disease for the years 2006 through 2012 is 7.7%. Note that every case is different and no conclusions can be made about an individual patient’s outcomes based on these numbers.

    Why is pancreatic cancer so challenging to treat?
    The reason pancreatic cancer is so deadly is that it is often diagnosed in advanced stages because it seldom causes symptoms when it initially develops. Because the cancer is relatively rare, doctors don’t recommend routine screening for patients who don’t have risk factors for the disease, as Sunrise Hospital & Medical Center oncologist Dr. Charles St. Hill explains in this video . This means pancreatic cancer is easily missed in early stages, when it is more treatable. In many instances, the cancer has spread to other organs by the time a diagnosis is made.

    What can I do to reduce my risk?
    Start by knowing the symptoms that do occur and reporting them to your doctor if they happen. Pancreatic cancer can cause back pain, stomach pain, jaundice, and loss of appetite. Talk to your doctor about your risk factors. Having diabetes, liver disease, or a family history of pancreatic cancer can make you more vulnerable to the disease.

    At Sunrise Hospital & Medical Center, our oncology unit provides both inpatient and outpatient care from a multidisciplinary team of experts who care for the whole patient, not just the disease. Call our hospital in Las Vegas at (702) 233-5300 for more information or a physician referral.

  • Essential Facts About Alzheimer’s Disease

    Many experts agree that Alzheimer’s disease has reached epidemic proportions in the U.S. You might already know that Alzheimer’s causes memory loss, but there is much more involved with this disease than just problems with one’s memory. Alzheimer’s disease develops and progresses gradually, causes damage to the brain, and results in death. It is currently incurable, although intensive research initiatives are ongoing. If you or a loved one is thought to have Alzheimer’s disease, you’ll find the answers you’re looking for at Riverside Community Hospital .

    Changes in the Brain
    Alzheimer’s is a neurodegenerative disease, which means that it triggers complex changes that destroy brain cells and impair function . In the earliest stage of Alzheimer’s, known as the preclinical stage, patients are asymptomatic; however, their brains are already undergoing the changes that are characteristic of the disease. Amyloid plaques and tau tangles develop. The neurons, which are necessary for communication in the brain, cease to function properly and begin to die off. Eventually, the brain begins to shrink.

    Onset of Symptoms
    There are many possible indicators of Alzheimer’s disease and in the early stage of the disease it can be difficult to tell if the symptoms are “normal” or indicative of a medical problem. Generally, if a person experiences memory loss, cognition impairment, or other problems that interfere with daily life, it’s a good idea to consider getting an evaluation for Alzheimer’s.

    Stages of the Disease
    There are different ways to categorize the stages of Alzheimer’s, but perhaps the simplest is to refer to them as the mild, moderate, and severe stages. In the mild stage, Alzheimer’s patients have trouble with thinking clearly, remembering information, and executing simple tasks. In the moderate stage, damage in other areas of the brain causes impairments with language, sensory processing, and reasoning. Confusion tends to worsen and delusions, paranoia, and hallucinations may develop. Severe Alzheimer’s is characterized by total dependence on others for care. Eventually, essential functions of the body shut down.

    Riverside Community Hospital is your partner in wellness. Our state-of-the-art medical facility in Riverside connects patients to neurology and neurosurgery care, along with heart health services, organ transplant procedures, and robotic surgery. For general information about our hospital services, you can call our Consult-A-Nurse line at (951) 788-3463.