Why You Should Get An Annual Exam

An annual exam is a good way of tracking your health progress.  Some of the benefits are:

  • Primary prevention
  • To identify risk factors for common chronic diseases
  • To detect disease that has no apparent symptoms (secondary prevention)
  • A way for the doctor to counsel people to promote healthy behavior
  • To update clinical data since your last check-up
  • To enhance the relationship between you and your doctor

If you are interested in scheduling an exam, Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s Ambulatory Care Center is centrally located and has convenient hours.  Call 718-206-7001 for 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.

Control Your Blood Pressure in the New Year

It is the beginning of the New Year and many of us will make resolutions to do things better than the previous year. For many people this means living healthy, losing weight, and keeping our blood pressure under control.

High blood pressure affects one in three Americans. If not controlled well it can lead to kidney problems, damaged blood vessels, stroke, and heart attacks. There are many factors that can cause blood pressure to be elevated including obesity, stress, smoking, high sodium diets and elevated cholesterol. Ideally, managing some of these factors can help to maintain a blood pressure that is as close to normal range (120/80mmHg) as possible.

There are many ways that doctors can help us to control our blood pressure, Your doctor can prescribe medication that will help. Additionally other methods include:

  • Quitting smoking
  • Lose weight
  • Stress reduction
  • Exercise regularly
  • Eat less salty food
  • Eliminate beverages that contain caffeine
  • Eat dark chocolate
  • Cut back on sugar
  • Drink less alcohol

Keeping your blood pressure under control is probably one of the most important things you can do to keep yourself healthy. Speak to your doctor about methods that would work best for you.

If you would like to schedule an appointment with a doctor at Jamaica Hospital to discuss how you can lower your blood pressure in 2018, 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.

The Employee Spotlight Shines on Nicholas DiMaria

We are proud to shine our employee spotlight on Nicholas DiMaria, Manager of the storeroom at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center. He joined the hospital 11 years ago as a storekeeper and is very appreciative of the opportunities given to be groomed for a leadership position. Nicholas is a native of Queens, New York. He grew up in Woodhaven where he still resides. He attended St. Elizabeth Elementary school, Arch Bishop Malloy High School, both in Queens and then moved on to Wake Technical College in Raleigh, North Carolina where he studied Criminal Justice.

In his free time he enjoys spending time with his wife and the rest of his family. His family is very important to him. He loves all types of food but pizza is definitely his favorite. Nicholas enjoys listening to different kinds of music which range from classical, to rap, rock, freestyle and country.  He likes to play video games and has a passion for football and hockey. One of his hobbies is collecting sneakers. He enjoys traveling and has visited several islands. His favorite destination is Walt Disney World in Orlando.

Nicholas has several pets. These include a 16 year old pit bull, a four year old Pomeranian, and three cats.

Nicholas has the utmost admiration for the hospital and also for the community that we serve. To him working with his colleagues is more than just a job, it is like an extended family. We are very thankful to have Nicholas as part of our team and we look forward to having him with us for a very long 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.

New Year’s Eve Safety Tips 2020

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently issued guidelines for Americans to safely celebrate New Year’s Eve.

The CDC recommends postponing travel and celebrating at home with people you live with. You can always ring in the New Year virtually with friends and family. These are the best and safest ways to protect those living in your household and others.

If you are intending to travel or go out for New Year’s Eve events, the CDC cautions you to:

  • If traveling – Research your chosen destination for cases of COVID- 19. You can utilize the CDC’s COVID Data Tracker to identify the latest number of cases in each area.
  • Always wear a mask in public settings (restaurants, public transportation, when around people who don’t live with you)
  • Wear your mask correctly – Over your nose and mouth, secured under your chin while snugly hugging your cheeks.
  • Get your flu shot
  • Stay at least 6 feet from people who do not live with you.
  • Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing and before eating
  • Stay home if you are sick
  • Isolate yourself from other members of your family and wear a mask if you are sick.

If you are hosting a celebration, the CDC recommends:

  • Talk with guests ahead of time to set expectations for celebrating together.
  • Limit the number of guests.
  • Keep celebrations outdoors, if possible.
  • If indoors, open windows and doors.  Use a window fan to blow air out, which will pull fresh are in through the open windows.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and items between use
  • Have guests bring their own food, drinks, plates, cups and utensils
  • Have extra unused masks available for your guests and encourage everyone to wear them inside and outside.
  • Keep background music volume low so guests don’t need to shout.

You also need to be mindful that, along with the new CDC guidelines, New Year’s Eve revelers are also urged to keep the traditional safety tips such as not drinking excessively or driving while intoxicated.

There is no doubt that 2020 has been an unusual year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.  The virus has all but re-imagined how we celebrate our holidays. With the New Year approaching, we are all awaiting better days to come. Let’s celebrate, but let’s do it safely. 

For more tips and guidelines visit – https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays/new-years-eve.html#:~:text=Stay%20at%20least%206%20feet,as%20masks%20and%20hand%20sanitizer.

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.

Holiday Safety Tips

Christmas and New Years Eve are typically holidays where we gather with our family and friends to celebrate  but this year is unlike any other. In an effort to keep you safe, Jamaica Hospital Medical Center offers the following tips to modify your holiday celebration during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year many health experts are recommending that we spend the holiday with only the people we live with year round and who are consistently taking precautions and are at the lowest risk. Once we open our home to people who don’t live with us, such as people traveling from other cities or states such as college students, we are increase the risk of spreading the virus. In addition, it is strongly recommended that gatherings be limited to ten people or less.

The Centers for Disease Control issued the following criteria for people who should not attend holiday gatherings. They include:

  • Anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 recently
  • Anyone with symptoms of COVID-19
  • Anyone waiting for test results
  • Anyone who was exposed to someone else with COVID-19
  • Anyone who is immunocompromised

All guests should be asked to wear a mask and to maintain social distancing and avoid loud talking and singing. The number of people preparing and serving the meal should be limited to just a few. They should all be wearing masks and they should be washing their hands frequently. Other guests should also be encouraged to wash their hands as soon as they enter the home and limit contact with surfaces of furniture. It is also recommended that there be only one source of food preparation. This means food from other households should be avoided as best as possible.

This year the holiday will definitely have a different vibe than what we have been accustomed to in the past but if we all practice safety precautions, we can still enjoy festivities.

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.

Holiday Tips For People With Diabetes

The holiday season is here and it seems like everywhere we go a variety of treats are being served.  It becomes hard to resist temptation and we may eat more than we normally do.

While overeating is not a good idea for anyone, people who have diabetes have to be very mindful of the things they eat and practice healthy habits.

Following these tips can help diabetics to manage their health and still enjoy the holidays:
• Try to keep to a regular schedule of when you eat.
• If you are going to a party, offer to bring a healthy dish with you.
• Cut back on food high in carbohydrates and fat if you are going to be eating sweets
• Don’t skip meals in anticipation of eating one big one, that could lead to overeating.
• Make sure you find time for some exercise to burn up the extra calories
• Eat the things you enjoy, but try to watch the portion sizes
• Get plenty of rest.
• Check your blood sugar regularly.
• Try not to consume a lot of soda or alcoholic beverages.

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.

Bulimia

Bulimia, also known as bulimia nervosa, is classified as an eating and mental health disorder. 

The disease causes a person to binge eat large amounts of food in a relatively short period of time.  This action causes feelings of guilt and remorse and leads to forced purging.

The purging of consumed food can include:

  • Induced vomiting
  • Use of laxatives
  • Periods of starvation
  • Excessive exercise

Although the exact cause of bulimia is unknown, it can be related to many factors including, stress, genetics, peer pressure, dieting, depression or substance abuse.

The onset of Bulimia usually begins in people between the ages of 14 and 22, tell-tale signs are:

  • A preoccupation with body shape and weight
  • Living in fear of gaining weight
  • Recurrent episodes of eating abnormally large amounts of food
  • Body Dysmorphia (a mental health disorder in which you can’t stop thinking about one or more perceived defects or flaws in your appearance)
  • Purging of food after overeating

The disease can be treated with therapy which aims to help the individual adjust the unrealistic way they view their appearance, negative thoughts and strengthens the ability to face and overcome their issues. The support of family and loved ones also play a key role in the treatment of bulimia.

Bulimia is a serious condition and can be life-threatening. If you, or someone you know, is showing the signs of bulimia and would like to speak with a health care professional, please call 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.

Frequently Asked Questions About The COVID-19 Vaccine

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) determines if a vaccine is appropriate based on the recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunizations and Practices (ACIP). The ACIP is a group of medical and public health experts that develop recommendations on how to use vaccines to control diseases in the United States.

Factors that the ACIP consider in their recommendations of vaccines include:

  • Safety and effectiveness
  • Severity of the disease
  • The number of people who get the disease if there is no vaccine
  • How effective is the vaccine for different age groups

The recent news about the availability of a COVID-19  vaccine has led to questions from many members of our community. Jamaica Hospital Medical Center is sharing the following information from the Centers for Disease Control  and Prevention (CDC) in an attempt to answer them.

Some commonly asked questions that people are asking:

Who will receive the vaccine first?

                At the present time, the first people to receive the vaccine will be frontline healthcare workers
                and elderly patients who are in extended care facilities such as nursing homes.

Is the vaccine safe?

The vaccines that are being distributed have undergone rigorous testing and have met the safety standards set forth by the CDC and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Are there any side effects of this vaccine?

The known side effects of the vaccines currently being distributed include soreness in the arm in which the vaccine was administered and some people have developed low grade fevers. Both of these only lasted less than 48 hours. There may be other side effects that we aren’t aware of yet.

Will the vaccine prevent me from getting COVID-19 ?

This vaccine, like all other vaccines, will lessen the chances of getting the virus but is not 100 percent guaranteed to be effective for everyone.

How long will the vaccine be effective for?

Until more time has passed and more people have been vaccinated, the CDC is not sure how long the vaccine will be effective for.

Do I need to wear a mask when I receive the vaccine?

Yes. Receiving the vaccine does not guarantee that you will not get the virus. Anytime you are outside of your immediate household and in contact with others, you should wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth.

Will I still have to follow safety protocols even though I have received the vaccine?

Yes. The vaccine is only one component of the safety measures that will still have to be followed.

How many times will I have to be vaccinated?

At the present time, it will be necessary to receive two doses of the vaccine and you will be given a date when you receive the first dose and when to come back for the second one.

If I already had the virus, should I still get the vaccine?

At the present time the CDC feels there isn’t enough information available to answer this question.

What should I do if I have a reaction to the vaccine?

You should contact your health care provider immediately as well as to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS).

The first doses were delivered around the United States on Monday December 14th. Once mass distribution begins the answers to the frequently asked questions will be answered more accurately. This is the link to the CDC for further information and to answer more questions about the vaccine. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/faq.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.

Learning More About Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy is a chronic sleep disorder characterized by overwhelming daytime drowsiness and sudden attacks of sleep. People with narcolepsy fall asleep without warning, anywhere, anytime. When they awaken, they may feel refreshed, but eventually get sleepy again. Narcolepsy can drastically affect a person’s quality of life and can result in physical harm to themselves or others.

 There are two forms of narcolepsy: Type 1 narcolepsy is when sudden attacks of sleep are accompanied by a loss of muscle tone.  Type 2 narcolepsy occurs with no loss in muscle tone.

In addition to sudden attacks of sleep, some of the signs and symptoms of narcolepsy include:

  • Decreased alertness and focus – Excessive daytime sleepiness makes it difficult for individuals to concentrate and fully function.
  • Sudden loss of muscle tone – This condition, called cataplexy can cause a number of physical changes, from slurred speech to complete weakness of most muscles, and may last up to a few minutes.
  • Sleep paralysis – People with narcolepsy often experience a temporary inability to move or speak while falling asleep or upon waking. These episodes are usually brief, lasting a few seconds or minutes.
  • Hallucinations – Hallucinations may occur while sleeping or while awake. These hallucinations may be particularly vivid and frightening because the person experiencing them may believe they are reality.

Narcolepsy symptoms typically begin anywhere between ten and thirty years of age. Symptoms may worsen for the first few years and then continue for life. People with narcolepsy may also have other sleep disorders, such as obstructive sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome and even insomnia.

While the exact cause of narcolepsy is unknown, research has revealed that people with type 1 narcolepsy have low levels of the chemical hypocretin, which is an important neurochemical in your brain that helps regulate wakefulness and REM sleep. Those with a family history of narcolepsy have a greater risk of developing it.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for narcolepsy however medications and lifestyle changes can help manage the symptoms.  It is recommended that you see a doctor if you experience excessive daytime sleepiness that disrupts your personal life.

Jamaica Hospital’s Sleep Center treats individuals with a wide variety of sleep disorders. Please call 718-206-5916 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.

The Health Benefits of Turmeric

Turmeric is a bright yellow spice that has been used for centuries in Asia, and today is promoted around the world as a dietary supplement. It is believed to have medicinal capabilities due to a powerful ingredient -curcumin- that has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties.

Turmeric is also believed to have other properties which include:

  • Anti-proliferative
  • Anti-microbial
  • Neuroprotective
  • Cardioprotective
  • Wound healing

However, they have not been studied, and much research is needed to confirm their effects.

Turmeric is taken orally, usually mixed in with cooking oils or ingested as a spice. It is considered to be generally very safe; however, some people have experienced nausea and occasionally diarrhea from taking it. It is also important to note that turmeric can be harmful to pregnant women, and can interact with certain medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen, affecting how they work. Before adding turmeric to your diet, it is highly advised that you speak with a physician.

At Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s Post-COVID Care Center, health practitioners may incorporate a diet that focuses on reducing inflammation as part of a patient’s integrative health treatment plan. The anti-inflammatory diet involves the elimination of foods and beverages high in fat and increasing the consumption of vegetables and lean proteins, such as fish. Another aspect of this diet is adding turmeric (as recommended by an integrative health physician) which can help address joint stiffness and muscle pain, both common symptoms reported by patients experiencing the long-term COVID-19 symptoms.

Jamaica Hospital has opened up a Post COVID-19 Care Center focusing on treating people who have been experiencing long term side effects of the virus. These people are known as “Long Haulers” and may experience depression, lethargy, anxiety, inflammation, loss of hair, loss of taste, shortness of breath, muscle and body pain. The staff at the center takes a holistic, whole approach to treating these patients. This includes not only treating with medications when deemed necessary but also with exercise, yoga, mind-body exercises, and nutritional support.

If you or someone you know is experiencing long term effects of COVID-19 and would like to schedule an appointment at Jamaica Hospital’s Post COVID Center, please call 718-736-8204.

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.