Summer Migraines

For many people who are prone to migraine headaches, summer can be the season when they are most affected. This doesn’t mean having to stay indoors to avoid symptoms, but instead learning the causes of migraines and taking precautions they should be taking to prevent them.

Migraine headaches are caused by changes in the brain that are brought on by several factors which include stress, hormonal changes, lack of sleep and food allergies. Factors that occur most commonly in summer include:

  • Changes in the weather
  • Sensitivity to bright light
  • Excessive heat and humidity
  • Changes in barometric pressure
  • Dehydration

In order to help prevent some of the causes of summer migraines, one can follow these helpful tips:

  • Make sure that you are drinking water adequately and frequently
  • Avoid beverages containing caffeine and alcohol
  • Wear a hat to keep the sun’s strong rays from your head and eyes
  • Protect your eyes with a good pair of sunglasses
  • Minimize the amount of time spent outdoors during the hottest part of the day
  • Do your errands during the cooler times of the day, if this is not possible, try to take breaks when you can and move into a cooler place.

People who experience frequent summer migraines don’t have to spend the summer indoors. If they take adequate precautions, they too can enjoy their time outdoors.

Speak to your physician if you experience frequent migraines at any time of the year and would like recommendations on  how to manage them. To make an appointment to see a physician at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, please call 718-206-7001.

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.

COVID-19 Summer Precautions

Just as spring was about to begin, the pandemic struck and forced us to change our lifestyles. This included the closing of schools and non-essential businesses, as well as restricting most of our person- to -person interactions.

Now that we are approaching summer, and the weather is warming up, more and more people are starting to go outdoors to parks, beaches, and other places. Under normal circumstances, this wouldn’t be an issue, however, due to the risk of spreading COVID-19, we have to be careful about becoming exposed to the virus.

Recently we have seen a general “flattening of the curve” which means fewer people are being hospitalized and succumbing to the virus. While this is a very positive step in the right direction, we have to be cautiously optimistic and must not let our guard down.

It is important to remember that the number of coronavirus cases has declined as a result of people staying home as much as possible and following the recommended safety guidelines.

To continue this trend, we must adhere to the rules that allowed us to get to this point. This includes:

  • Practicing social distancing – keeping at least six feet apart from others
  • Avoiding gatherings of 10 or more people
  • Wearing masks
  • Sanitizing our hands
  • Sanitizing surfaces that we commonly come in contact with

Taking these precautions will help to protect our health as our cities and towns begin to reopen. By remaining vigilant we can achieve our collective goal of further flattening the curve.

For more information and the latest developments of the COVID-19 outbreak, please visit www.cdc.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.

Jamaica Hospital Reopening Safety Plan

To Our Patients,

We hope that you and your family are in good health. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected us all.  Many aspects of our lives have drastically changed, and perhaps nothing has been altered more than the way we manage our health and the health of our family.

During the outbreak, many of our primary care and specialty providers have remained in communication with and treated our patients via “video visits”. Jamaica Hospital will continue to make this service available and encourage you to use it whenever possible, but we also understand that not all healthcare can be provided in this manner.

As we start to recover from the COVID-19 outbreak, Jamaica Hospital is beginning to reopen some services for our patients and community.  We understand that many of these services are vital to your health and are pleased to once again offer them to you.  As we reopen, we want you to know that your safety is our priority and our hospital is taking every precaution to ensure it during this time.

Some of our measures made to protect you include:

Modified Appointment Schedule – To eliminate overcrowding in our patient care areas, we are limiting appointments. This will reduce waiting times and help us manage proper social distancing policies.

Pre-Registration – To avoid spending unnecessary time in waiting areas, patients will have the opportunity to complete all paperwork remotely before they arrive.

Screenings – Designated hospital employees will greet all patients and screen them for COVID-like symptoms upon arrival. 

Disinfection and Cleaning – Our team remains dedicated to thoroughly and repeatedly disinfecting and cleaning all patient care areas in accordance with CDC guidelines.

Limited Companions – For everyone’s safety and to avoid overcrowding, only parents or other required companions are permitted to accompany patients during their appointments.

Protective Equipment – All employees will be wearing the appropriate level of personal protective equipment (PPE) at all times.  All patients will be required to wear a face mask as well.

Working Together – All patients should monitor their health and report if they have tested positive for COVID-19, come in contact with someone who tested positive or experienced any related symptoms in the last 14 days.

Following these safety measures will allow us to deliver the highest-quality, person-centered care to our patients and community.

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.

How to Prevent Dehydration During the Summer Heat

With the summer and warmer weather upon us causing more and more people to begin to participate in outdoor activities. Before you begin, make sure you drink plenty of water in order to avoid dehydration. Here are some tips to help you stay hydrated:

  • The rule that you need to drink eight glasses of water per day is a myth. The Institute of Medicine recommends women should receive 2.2 liters of fluid intake per day and men should get three liters. Keep in mind that fluid intake can come from beverages other than water.
  • While thirst is your body’s way of preventing dehydration, being thirsty doesn’t mean that you are dehydrated. Thirst is our brain’s way of telling us to drink more to avoid dehydration.
  • The color of your urine is a good, real-time indicator of dehydration, but the misconception is that urine should be clear. In truth, urine should be a pale-yellow color.
  • Caffeinated beverages, such as coffee or tea will not dehydrate you if consumed in moderate amounts. Caffeine is considered a mild diuretic, the amount of water in it offsets the amount of fluid it will cause you to lose through increased urination.
  • Drinking isn’t the only way of increasing your water intake. It is estimated that we get up to 20% of our daily water intake from the foods we eat. Fruits and vegetables contain the most, with cucumbers, celery, and watermelon having the highest concentration of water.
  • There is also such a thing as drinking too much water and becoming overhydrated. This can be very dangerous and can lead to a condition called hyponatremia. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, headache, and fatigue. To avoid this problem, do not drink to the point that you are full from water alone.

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 Importance of Monitoring Chronic Illnesses During the COVID-19 Crisis

Many health care facilities have seen a decrease in people seeking care for chronic conditions due to the COVID-19 outbreak. This can be attributed to fears of being exposed to the virus in public places or the temporary suspension of certain services offered by healthcare providers.

Although the outbreak has caused alterations in the way we live, one thing that should remain unchanged for those living with chronic illnesses is monitoring their health. It is important that they pay attention to symptoms that warn of serious health problems, because ignoring them may put their lives at risk.

Symptoms of chronic illnesses that should not be ignored include:

  • Chest pain, pressure in your chest, shortness of breath or other heart attack symptoms
  • Sudden numbness, weakness, confusion, loss of vision or other stroke symptoms
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Heavy bleeding
  • High fever
  • Spikes in blood sugar (Diabetes)
  • Nausea

If these symptoms are persistent, please contact a physician for a medical consultation or seek emergency treatment. Medical facilities are well equipped to safely treat non-COVID-19 patients and many doctors are offering telehealth appointments. Some hospitals are also reopening their outpatient locations. 

In addition to monitoring symptoms, it is important to maintain healthy habits. This can be achieved by keeping routine appointments (virtually or in person), taking prescribed medications, exercising, and eating a well-balanced diet.  

If you have a non-COVID-19 related chronic medical condition or symptoms and would like to see a doctor, please contact Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s Ambulatory Care Center at 718-206-7001, to schedule an appointment.

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.

Jamaica Hospital Discharges New Mom After Battle With COVID-19

Jamaica Hospital’s doctors, nurses and other frontline staff have provided life-saving care to thousands of patients with the coronavirus since the onset of the outbreak. As a team, they have overcome several obstacles but when they were confronted with saving the life of a pregnant woman and her unborn child, the challenge became that much greater.


On March 24, Mrs. Tasnim Shaheen was 24 weeks pregnant with her third child when she was taken to the Queens-based hospital, located at the epicenter of the global pandemic with flu-like symptoms. She was initially admitted to the hospital’s labor unit for coronavirus, but within two days, her symptoms intensified and she was transferred to the intensive care unit and placed on a ventilator.


The ICU team closely monitored her condition over the next few weeks but became increasingly concerned as Mrs. Shaheen developed acute kidney injuries as well as pneumonia. The doctors determined that it was in the best interest of the patient and her unborn child if they performed a C-section. “At this point, Mrs. Shaheen was 28 weeks pregnant and we felt as if the baby had a good chance of survival if we delivered,” stated Dr. Kavitha Ram, Director of Obstetrics at Jamaica Hospital. “In addition, we felt that removing the fetus would give Mrs. Shaneen a better opportunity to resolve her kidney issues as well as her pneumonia.”

After consulting with the patient’s husband, the decision was made to perform the surgery on April 22nd. The patient was taken directly from the intensive care unit to the operating room where Dr. Ram and her team delivered a 940 gram (approximately 2 lb.) baby girl, the couple’s first daughter. According to Dr. Ram, “The baby came out kicking and screaming and was very healthy.” The baby was immediately taken to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and mom returned to intensive care.

Soon after the delivery, Mrs. Shaheen began showing signs of improvement. Within two days her kidneys began to recover, within three days she was taken off of the ventilator and after five days she was moved out of intensive care and back to the labor unit.

One of the factors that Dr. Ram attributes to Mrs. Shaheen’s recovery was the hospital’s ability to connect her to her family despite not being able to see them due to visitation restrictions. “Throughout the entire admission, our Palliative Care team did an excellent job of communicating with the patient’s family through video conferencing. Mr. Shaheen had daily contact with his wife even when she was on a ventilator, which allowed him to be involved in her care.” Dr. Ram added, “When Mrs. Shaheen was eventually taken off the ventilator, she was able to not only see and speak with her husband and sons, but also her extended family in Bangladesh. We feel this greatly contributed to her recovery.”
Perhaps the greatest moment, however, was when Jamaica Hospital was able to connect Mrs. Shaheen from her hospital bed to her baby girl, Reeda Birt Shaheen in the NICU. ‘We were overjoyed to be able to provide her with the opportunity to see her daughter for the first time,” stated palliative care physician Dr. Medha Chunduru.

Now, approximately seven weeks after being admitted, Mrs. Shaheen is being discharged. Jamaica Hospital is inviting members of the media to share in this joyous occasion and even see baby Reda through video conferencing technology.

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.

Stay At Home Tips

Practicing social distancing and staying at home is crucial in preventing the spread of the coronavirus, but isolating ourselves from others and disrupting our daily routines can be challenging.

Here are some tips to help you during this difficult time:

  • Structure your day – Try creating a daily schedule. Make your own routines and break up the day in order to stave off monotony and keep everyone as busy as possible.
  • Stay active – Try an at home workout that can help keep you moving and combat the sense of malaise and boredom that can come from being stuck inside day after day.
  • Identify new activities – Whether it is tackling a project at home that you have been putting off or discovering a new hobby, new activities can provide a sense of purpose or achievement.
  • Communicate – Staying in contact with others via telephone, text or social media not only staves off boredom, but it is also critical for minimizing the sense of isolation.

We hope these tips will help you get through this challenging time.

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.

Do’s and Don’ts: Wearing A Surgical Mask

We’re sharing some Do’s and Don’ts of wearing surgical masks to help you to protect your health.

DO:

1. Wash and sanitize your hands before putting on the mask

2. Check for defects such as holes or tears

3. Make sure that the mask fits snugly to your face

4. Wash and sanitize your hands after removing the mask

DON’T:

1. Touch the mask once it’s on your face, doing so can expose you to pathogens

2. Hang the mask around your neck

3. Reuse single-use masks

4. Touch the front of the mask when removing it

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.

Jamaica Hospital Makes America’s 250 Best Hospitals List

There are over 5,000 hospitals in the United States, so to be listed as one of the top 250 in the country is quite an accomplishment.

Healthgrades, a leading resource that connects consumers, physicians and health systems, announced its list of America’s 250 Best Hospitals for 2020 and Jamaica Hospital Medical Center was one of only a select few in New York City to be recognized.

This accomplishment places Jamaica Hospital in the top 5% of hospitals in the nation, demonstrating the hospital’s commitment to delivering superior patient care outcomes year after year.

To determine America’s Best Hospital recipients, Healthgrades analyzed the performance of all participating hospitals nationwide. Clinical quality outcomes for 32 conditions and procedures, including heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia, respiratory failure, sepsis and stroke were evaluated over a three year period. Healthgrades recognized only those hospitals that “consistently exhibit exceptional, comprehensive quality care.”

Healthgrades has concluded that hospitals receiving this award provide significantly better care and, the most important measurement of any hospital, superior outcomes to its patients.

In addition to the recognition as one of America’s Best Hospitals, Healthgrades also awarded Jamaica Hospital with the following:

  • America’s 100 Best Hospitals For Coronary Intervention Award – 2020
  • America’s 100 Best Hospital for Stroke Care Award – 2020
  • Neurosciences Excellence Award – 2020, 2019
  • Patient Safety Excellence Award – 2018, 2017

“We are honored to be recognized by Healthgrades as one of America’s Best Hospitals. This achievement signifies Jamaica Hospital’s commitment to delivering the highest quality care to our patients,” stated Bruce J. Flanz, President and CEO of Jamaica Hospital Medical Center. “Over the years we have initiated many programs and services that focus on providing patient-centered care to our community, knowing that it would ultimately lead to better patient outcomes.  This acknowledgment by Healthgrades reaffirms that we are on the right path to becoming a high-reliability organization.”

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.

Eosinophilic Esophagitis

Eosinophilic esophagitis is a condition where a large number of white blood cells accumulate on the lining of the esophagus as the result of a reaction to certain foods, acid reflux or allergens.

The accumulation of white blood cells can cause irritation and scarring in the esophagus. This eventually can lead to severe narrowing, and the potential obstruction of the esophagus.

What are the symptoms of eosinophilic esophagitis?

In adults this can include:

  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Chest pain
  • Heartburn
  • Upper abdominal pain
  • Food getting stuck in esophagus

In children the symptoms can include:

  • Frequent regurgitation
  • Abdominal pain
  • Vomiting
  • Food getting stuck in the esophagus
  • Weight loss
  • Poor growth

There are several environmental and genetic factors that may put some at risk of eosinophilic esophagitis more than others.  The condition tends to run in families and is more common in males than females. It is seen more frequently in colder climates. There are more diagnoses in the spring and fall due to higher levels of pollen in the air.

How is this condition diagnosed?  A physician will take a complete medical history, and order a test to check the levels of eosinophils in the blood. Doctors may also order an endoscopy to visually inspect the lining of the esophagus or a biopsy of the lining of the esophagus.

Treatment for this condition will require eliminating exposure to whatever is determined as the cause of an allergic reaction.  Doctors may also recommend keeping the head of the bed elevated at night to prevent acid reflux and maintaining a healthy weight.  They may also eliminate certain foods from a patient’s diet. Medications can also be prescribed to help keep symptoms under control.

If you would like to schedule an appointment with a physician 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.