Today is National HIV Testing Day

June 27th is National HIV Testing Day. There are 1.1 million people living with HIV in the United States, and one in seven are unaware they have the virus.

Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, along with other health organizations is working together to raise awareness about the importance of getting tested and early HIV diagnosis. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends “that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care.”

We are encouraging people to know their status. There are now more ways than ever to get tested.

Jamaica Hospital’s clinics offer HIV testing to the community. For a list of our clinics and contact information, please visit https://jamaicahospital.org/clinical-services/ambulatory-care/

If a patient tests positive we also provide HIV counseling and treatment. We offer integrated clinical care, social and educational services in a comfortable and caring environment.

To receive more information about National HIV Testing Day and to learn more about the virus, please visit, https://www.cdc.gov/hiv/library/awareness/testingday.html

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

The Facts About Male Infertility

Infertility is a diagnosis given to couples who have been unsuccessful at conceiving after a year of trying. Infertility affects approximately 15% of all couples and within this group male infertility issues contribute to 30% of all cases.

During Men’s Health Month, Jamaica Hospital wants to provide information about male infertility and offer treatment options for those trying to conceive.

 

The most common cause of male infertility is a varicocele, which is an enlargement of the veins within the scrotum that holds the testicles. Varicoceles are a common cause of low sperm production and decreased sperm quality.

Other causes include:

  • Age
  • A blockage in your reproductive system
  • Undescended testicles
  • Sperm that are abnormally shaped or that don’t move correctly
  • Hormone problems
  • Certain health conditions, such as cancer
  • An infection or sexually transmitted disease (STD)
  • Erectile dysfunction.

Sometimes the cause of male infertility is unknown. In these cases, it may be the result of genetics, lifestyle, or environmental factors.

A doctor can help find the cause of infertility. Your doctor will do an exam and review your medical history. A semen analysis will determine sperm count and quality. Another test your doctor may perform is a check of your hormone levels.

While you cannot always prevent male infertility, there are factors that can affect this condition that should be avoided. These include:

  • smoking
  • alcohol or drug abuse
  • emotional stress
  • obesity
  • Frequent hot tub use or wearing tight fitting underwear.

More than half of male infertility cases can be corrected. Treatment options depend on the root cause. Medicine can improve hormone levels or erectile dysfunction. Surgery can help correct physical problems, such as a varicocele. It also can repair blockages or other damage. Surgery is often minor and done as an outpatient procedure.

In cases where infertility cannot be cured, your doctor may suggest a form of assisted reproductive therapy, such as:

  • Intrauterine insemination (IUI). A man’s sperm is collected and inserted into the woman’s uterus. This procedure is done at the time of ovulation.
  • In vitro fertilization (IVF). This technique is more complex. A man’s sperm and a woman’s egg are fertilized in the lab. Then it is implanted back in the woman’s uterus.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

National Migraine and Headache Awareness Month

According to the Coalition for Headache and Migraine Patients (CHAMP), June is recognized by the federal government as National Migraine and Headache Awareness Month.

More than 38 million people in the United States experience migraines or some type of tension headache with 2 -3 million of them experiencing chronic migraines.

The exact causes of migraines are unknown.  People with migraine or tension headaches may have a tendency to be affected by certain triggers such as fatigue, bright lights, weather changes and hypertension.

Some symptoms of migraine or tension headaches are:

  • Throbbing pain, numbness, weakness
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Sensitivity to sound
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Vertigo
  • Mood changes
  • Neck pain
  • Vision changes

Treatment for migraine or tension headaches depends on the how often or how severe the headache is, the level of disability your headache may cause and contributing medical conditions you may have.

Over the counter medications such as anti-nausea or Ibuprofen may help with more minor episodes, but if you are experiencing multiple headaches per month lasting more than 12 hours, over the counter medications aren’t helping and your migraine symptoms include numbness or weakness, it is best to consult your physician.

If you are experiencing painful migraine or tension headaches, the Ambulatory Care Center at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center has convenient hours and days of operation.  To schedule an appointment, call 718-206-7001.

To learn more about migraines and tension headaches visit – https://migraine.com/migraine-statistics/

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

World No Tobacco Day

Since 1987 the World Health Organization has recognized May 31st as a day to bring awareness around the world of the harmful effects of tobacco. This year the focus is on tobacco and cardiovascular diseases.
The risks of using tobacco are well documented, however many people around the world are not fully aware of the dangers.  There is a very strong link between tobacco use and heart disease, circulatory problems and stroke.
Coronary vascular diseases are one of the world’s leading causes of death.  Tobacco use is the second leading cause of these types of diseases, hypertension being the leading cause. With all of the knowledge we have about the harmful effects of tobacco use, there are still some who have not received the message and as a result, more than 7 million people die each year from the effects of tobacco.
A few of the initiatives that the World Health Organization is trying to implement to inform people about tobacco’s harmful effects are:
• Increase public knowledge of the risks of smoking and second hand smoke
• Encourage healthcare providers to speak to their patients about the hazards of tobacco
• Encourage governmental  support for educational programs
• Seek ways to promote smoke free zones in buildings and public spaces
• Increase taxes on tobacco products
• Make it more difficult to purchase tobacco products
• Ban tobacco advertising
If you use tobacco products and would like to quit, speak to your provider. Jamaica Hospital offers a tobacco cessation program  to help you. Please call 718-206-8494 to learn more.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Hurricane Season is Just Around the Corner – Are You Prepared?

Warmer temperatures are coming and we are all looking forward to them. While we typically associate the summer weather as a wonderful time to spend some time at the beach or with the family at a cookout, the summer months can bring with them some very dangerous weather conditions, namely hurricanes.

Hurricane season in the Atlantic region officially begins on June 1.  Defined by their torrential rain and heavy winds, hurricanes have the ability to cause massive devastation.  On average, 12 hurricanes make landfall the United States each year, and with so many major storms hitting different parts of the country in recent years, including Super Storm Sandy, which ravaged the New York area in 2012,  it is very important to be prepared for the next potential storm.

With a long history of providing relief to those devastated by hurricanes, including sending personnel to assist the victims of Hurricanes Katrina and Maria, Jamaica Hospital Medical Center is experienced and knowledgeable about how to properly prepare for such an event and would like to share the following tips with our community:

  • Stay informed by making sure you receive emergency notifications. There are many downloadable apps that can provide you with important information.
  • Know your community’s evacuation plan in advance and identify the appropriate evacuation routes and potential safe shelters.
  • Create an emergency notification plan for your family. This will help you contact one another and get back together if you are apart when a storm arrives.
  • Prepare a “go bag” in the event you need to evacuate in a hurry. Contents of a go bag should include a flashlight, batteries, cash, first aid supplies and medications as well as critical documents.
  • If you do not need to evacuate but there is a potential for prolonged power outages, make sure to have three to five days of water and non-perishable food items on hand for each member of your family.
  • Prepare your home by reinforcing all exterior doors and windows, securing or bringing in any loose objects outside your home, cutting down any damaged tree limbs, and repairing damaged gutters to prevent leaks.
  • While sometimes flooding is unavoidable, do your best to protect valuables by placing them in secure containers or relocating them to higher elevations.
  • If you have purchased a generator, be sure to use it correctly. Remember to keep them outdoors, keep them at least 20 feet away from windows and doors and try to protect them from moisture.

By being prepared and following these tips, you can help keep your home and your loved ones safe from disaster.

For more information, please visit https://www.ready.gov/hurricanes

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

May is National Allergy and Asthma Awareness Month

According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA), the number of people living in the United States who suffer from allergies and asthma has doubled over the last 20 years.  Last year alone, there were over 2 million emergency room visits due to asthma and allergy attacks.

In an effort to bring attention to numbers that continue to grow and approach epidemic proportions; the White House has designated May as National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month. The month of May was chosen to raise awareness as it coincides with the peak season and a perilous time for allergy and asthma sufferers.

Education is the primary objective of Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month.   It is hoped that by educating the public about both chronic health conditions, more action will be taken to prevent symptoms and improve the quality of life of those affected.

Prevention and awareness are the best defenses against asthma or allergy symptoms. The first step in preventing symptoms is becoming aware of your triggers, which can be achieved through testing.  Dr. Lisa Roth, Allergist and Immunologist at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, explains, “It is important that you speak to your doctor about receiving allergy tests. Testing can help to determine the cause of your symptoms. Often people purchase over the counter medications to treat symptoms but they may not be treating the correct cause for their discomfort.”  Once your triggers are identified you can learn how to lessen their effects and seek proper treatment.

Dr. Roth recommends the following tips to lessen your exposure to triggers and alleviate symptoms:

  • Monitor pollen and mold counts
  • Keep doors and windows shut in your home and car,
  • Take medications as prescribed by your doctor
  • Clean the air in your home with a HEPA filter
  • Wash your face and hair as soon as you get home
  • Wash linens and clothing frequently.

To learn more about Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month visit the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America’s website http://www.aafa.org/page/asthma-and-allergy-awareness-month.aspx

To schedule appointment with an allergist at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, please call 718-206-6742.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Preeclampsia Awareness Month

Preeclampsia Awareness Month is a nationally recognized health observance that presents an opportunity to offer education to help increase awareness of this life-threatening disorder.

Preeclampsia occurs in eight percent of all pregnancies.  Formerly called toxemia, preeclampsia is a condition that is marked by high blood pressure in pregnant women that have previously not experienced high blood pressure.  Symptoms of preeclampsia include high levels of protein found in their urine and they may have swelling in the feet, legs and hands.  Preeclampsia appears late in the pregnancy, generally after the 20 week mark, although, in some cases, it can appear earlier.

If left undiagnosed and untreated, preeclampsia can become a more serious condition called eclampsia, which can put the expectant mother and baby at risk.

There is no cure for preeclampsia, but when it is caught in its early stages, it is easier to manage.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

National Healthcare Decision Day

Today, Jamaica Hospital recognizes National Healthcare Decision Day.    On this day, our goal is to help members of our community understand the importance of planning end-of-life-care and providing advance directives.

Although planning end-of-life-care is difficult, it is necessary. Taking the time to prepare for this stage of life can help you and loved ones with making challenging decisions about your care that may arise in the future.

When planning your end-of-life care it is important to consider what your wishes are and how they should be carried out.

Advance directives are legal documents (which includes the creation of a living will and choosing a healthcare proxy) that allow you to spell out your decisions about end-of-life care ahead of time. They give you a way to tell your wishes to family, friends, and health care professionals and to avoid confusion later on.

To receive further information about planning end-of-life care, Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s Palliative Care Division recommends utilizing comprehensive resources such as The Conversation Project.  The organization provides a starter kit, “a useful tool to help people have conversations with their family members or other loved ones about their wishes regarding end-of-life care.”  For more information, visit www.theconversationproject.org.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

April is National Donate Life Month

organ donor 2017April is National Donate Life Month, a month dedicated to celebrating the lives of people saved by organ donation and the donors who made a difference. In 2016, over 33,000 lives in the United States were saved thanks to the men and women who decided to give the gift of life.

During National Donate Life Month, organizations such as LiveOnNY carry out missions or campaigns to educate communities about the importance of organ donation.  These initiatives are very important because they address many concerns people may have about becoming a donor, such as:

  • Religion- Most major religions such as Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam and others are in support of organ donation.
  • Age – If you have been given approval by your doctor to be a donor, you are never too old. The oldest person in the U.S. on record to be a donor was 93 years old.
  • Health conditions- It is important that you do not rule yourself out as a donor due to medical conditions. Each case is different.
  • Premature death- The primary goal of doctors is to save your life. Donation is only considered when all efforts to save a patient’s life have failed.

Jamaica Hospital is encouraging people to help play a role in saving or improving lives by registering as organ donors.   Research shows that 90 percent of New Yorkers support organ donation but only about 30 percent are registered.  By registering, you can make a difference and help save up to eight lives.For more information please visit, http://www.liveonny.org/  or www.organdonor.gov

 

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

Each year thousands of lives are lost due to someone who is not fully concentrating on the road while operating a motor vehicle. A few of the things that people should avoid while driving include:

  • Texting
  • Eating
  • Adjusting a radio or GPS
  • Talking on the phone
  • Personal grooming

Dr. Geoffrey Doughlin, Chairman of Emergency Medicine at Jamaica Hospital, explains in this video why distracted driving is so dangerous.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.