• Who Is Most at Risk for Stroke?

    Stroke is a sudden, serious emergency medical condition commonly referred to as a “brain attack” because it can happen with little warning. However, there are risk factors that may be noted well before a stroke occurs, and knowing these will help to prevent this traumatic disruption of brain activity. There are some uncontrollable risk factors for stroke , including family history and ethnicity, but many more of the causes of stroke are preventable. Here is a look at the conditions and lifestyle factors that most commonly contribute to the occurrence of stroke.

    Man grabbing chest in pain

    High blood pressure and cholesterol

    Getting regular physicals is important, because these exams will include blood testing and measuring of vital signs that can show abnormalities in your circulatory health . The two major factors to look out for are high blood pressure and high cholesterol, as these issues can restrict blood flow and raise the chances for a blot clot to form.

    Diabetes

    Individuals with diabetes have poor blood sugar regulation, and they may experience complications such as high blood pressure and organ damage as a result of excess glucose in the blood. Taking control of your diabetes with the help of your doctor will help you minimize the potential complications of this disease, thereby lowering your risk for stroke.

    Alcohol and tobacco use

    When you smoke, you can severely damage your cardiovascular health as the arteries harden and CO2 builds up in the blood. This will reduce the amount of oxygen reaching your vital organs, making stroke more likely. Alcohol use can also be problematic, as drinking too much will raise your blood pressure and increase triglycerides.

    For a closer look at your stroke risk and reliable emergency care to respond to stroke signs, visit West Hills Hospital & Medical Center . Enrolling in our H2U program will give you access to a wealth of free classes and seminars to get you in touch with your health. Learn more by visiting our website or calling our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (818) 676-4000.

  • Can Exercise Effect Prostate Cancer?

    Prostate cancer is one of the most well-known and well-documented forms of cancer, and while getting regular check-ups is very important for men, there are other ways that a man can keep their risk of developing prostate cancer low.  Exercise has not only been shown to help keep your risk of developing the disease lower, but as this video shows, it has also been linked to increasing a person’s chance of survival if they develop the disease.  Find out more information in this great video, or call West Hills Hospital today at (818) 676-4000!

  • Making Cancer Prevention a Reality

    A cancer diagnosis is one of the most devastating events that a person can go through, but there are ways to make these diagnoses a thing of the past.

    The American Cancer Society takes a look at some quick facts about cancer and prevention tools in this video. With the right screening made available to more people and better public awareness of cancer risks, a world with less cancer is a possibility for the future.

    Like the American Cancer Society, West Hills Hospital & Medical Center is committed to the fight against cancer. We offer public health education, affordable screenings, and superior cancer care to help wipe out cancer in our community. Learn more about our dedication to better health for everyone by visiting our website or calling our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (818) 676-4000.

  • Take Charge of Your Health With Information From National Health Education Week

    National Health Education Week (NHEW) is an annual nationwide initiative that brings greater awareness to the American public regarding the importance of maintaining your health and wellbeing. Since 1995, NHEW has been educating individuals on specific areas of concern, and this year’s theme focuses on adolescent health. The following guidelines provide an outline of the topics that were covered during 2012’s National Health Education Week:

    Breakfast

    Good Nutrition

    One key component to this year’s National Health Education Week was teaching the importance of good dietary practices. Studies show that over 12 million American children ages two to 19 are obese, putting them at risk for numerous health problems such as cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. Unfortunately, unhealthy eating habits developed in childhood often carry over into adulthood; more than one-third of adult Americans are also obese. Therefore, for both your sake and that of your children, make implementing good nutritional guidelines a family priority.

    Consistent Exercise

    Another contributing factor of obesity is lack of physical activity. Instead of getting the recommended 30 minutes of moderate exercise five days a week, parents and their children watch television or play video games for hours at a time. However, regular physical activity isn’t a deterrent only to excessive weight. Healthcare providers stress the importance of exercise for cardiovascular health, orthopedic strength, respiratory wellbeing, mental vitality, and more.

    Health-Conscious Habits

    While eating right and exercising are two fundamental components of living a healthy lifestyle, they aren’t the only factors that play a role in maintaining your wellbeing. Avoiding detrimental habits such as smoking and excessive drinking also contributes to your general health. In addition, keep in mind that while teaching your children about the dangers that these behaviors hold is important, leading by example is the most effective way to ensure that they will steer clear of these bad habits.

    Do you want to find out more about how you can become more proactive for your health ? Then contact West Hills Hospital and Medical Center. Our Center for Fitness and Rehabilitation can help residents in the greater West Hills, California region learn about what to do to safeguard their wellbeing. Call us today at (818) 676-4000 to learn more.

  • Reduce Your Health Risks By Getting Informed With These Links

    If you want to learn more about what it takes to stay healthy, West Hills Hospital & Medical Center can offer you the screenings and resources to help you better understand your own preventive care. Visit our website to see a list of our community classes and events or call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (818) 676-4000 to learn more.

    cigarettes in the blue ashtray

    The Weight-Control Information Network details the different types of bariatric surgery .

    Health Day in collaboration with the NIH offers some valuable information about the many benefits of weight loss surgery .

    Check out this article from the CDC to learn about the danger of burn injuries in the home.

    This factsheet from CPSC.gov can help you improve your home’s safety during the holidays.

    Read these statistics reported by the American Heart Association to learn about the impact of heart disease and stroke on public health.

  • The Connection Between Smoking and Skin Cancers

    Most of us know that smoking cigarettes is hazardous to the smoker’s health.  The connection between smoking and lung cancer has been well documented for years, but what many people don’t realize is that smoking can also increase your risk of developing other types of cancer.  In this video we discuss the connection between smoking and your risk of developing types of skin cancer.  For more information, be sure to contact West Hills Hospital today at (818) 676-4000

  • Is Bariatric Surgery Right for Your Weight Loss Needs?

    Obesity is a significant problem in American adults and children, and it can be a serious threat to an individual’s health. Weight loss surgery is one solution for obesity that has helped many people get back in control of their health, but it is not always the most appropriate method for dramatic weight loss. Below are some indicators that bariatric surgery is the best choice for you.

    Measuring the beerbelly

    You have a BMI of 40 or higher

    Bariatric surgery is a procedure reserved only for those considered morbidly obese, which means having a Body Mass Index above 40. Some people with a lower BMI in the range of 35-39 may be considered for surgery if pressing health issues like diabetes are present. BMI is a calculation that accounts for height and gender when considering the risks of an individual’s weight.

    Other weight loss methods have failed

    Those who do get bariatric surgery need to be committed to significant lifestyle changes that last for a lifetime. Therefore, they may have experience with other weight loss strategies that have failed after reasonable effort was put in. You should thoroughly discuss your weight loss efforts with your physician before considering surgery, as your doctor will be able to help you weigh the risks to decide if it’s the right option.

    Obesity is damaging your health

    Conditions like diabetes, sleep apnea, anemia, and hypertension are common among those who get bariatric surgery. These conditions need to be controlled to prevent early fatality due to more serious problems, such as heart disease or stroke. If your health is in a more critical state, surgery may be too risky for you.

    November is the perfect time to take bariatric surgery into consideration because it is American Diabetes Month. Start learning about your options to reduce your risk for diabetes and get your weight under control by attending a Weight Loss Surgery Support Group at West Hills Hospital & Medical Center . Sign up for this group and explore our other free health services on our website or by calling (818) 676-4000.

  • How Diabetes Is Related to Stroke

    Diabetes is not just a concern for blood sugar levels, as it is associated with many health complications that can be life threatening. This video discusses the serious risk of heart disease and stroke in patients with diabetes. In fact, patients with diabetes are two to four times more likely to have a stroke than those without diabetes.

    At West Hills Hospital & Medical Center , we are dedicated to helping the community stay healthy with classes and events for diabetes prevention and screening for heart disease and stroke risk factors. Learn more about these events and register yourself for them at our website or by calling (818) 676-4000.

  • Most Common Types of Cancer

    Doctor Talking to Patient

    The American Cancer Society (ACS) estimates that cancer will strike more than 1.6 million Americans in 2012. Some types of cancer are much more common than others. Here’s a look at the types that the ACS expects to be diagnosed most frequently in 2012:

    Prostate cancer . This is the most common type of cancer in men, except for skin cancer. The disease is more likely to develop in older men, African Americans, and men whose relatives have had prostate cancer.

    When the disease is in its early stages, there are often no symptoms. More advanced disease may lead to an inability to urinate, the need to urinate frequently, pain or burning with urination and blood in the urine.

    Breast cancer . This is the most common cancer that affects women, aside from skin cancer. Though it can also strike men, it does so much less often. Breast cancer typically produces no symptoms when the tumor is small and treatment is most effective. It is important for women to follow recommended screening guidelines.

    Older women are more likely to develop breast cancer, and so are women who are overweight or obese after menopause. Drinking alcohol and being physically inactive can put women at higher risk of breast cancer.

    Lung cancer. Cancer of the lung and a related structure called the bronchus is the second most common cancer in both men and women. It accounts for more deaths than any other cancer in both genders.

    Symptoms may include shortness of breath, a persistent cough, coughing up blood, chest pain and a change in the voice. The issue that most often raises people’s risk of lung cancer is cigarette smoking.

    Colorectal cancer – Colorectal cancer, which affects the lower part of the digestive system, is the third most common type of cancer in both men and women. People become more likely to develop this cancer as they get older. Other factors that raise the risk of the disease include obesity, lack of physical activity, eating red meat or processed meat frequently, smoking, and alcohol use.

    Current screening recommendations call for men and women who are at average risk for developing colorectal cancer to begin screening at age 50.

    Others in the 10 most common types of cancer are:

    Males

    • Bladder
    • Mouth and pharynx (the back of the throat)
    • Leukemia, which is cancer of the bone marrow and blood

    Females

    • Uterus
    • Thyroid
    • Ovary

    Males and females

    • Melanoma, the most serious kind of skin cancer
    • Kidney and a related structure called the renal pelvis
    • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma, which affects a type of white blood cell
    • Pancreas

    West Hills Hospital & Medical Center offers the latest advances in state-of-the-art cancer care . Our highly trained physicians and other providers diagnose and treat cancer in a caring, convenient setting. To learn more about our cancer treatment services, call (818) 676-4000.

  • More Resources on Our Healthcare Treatment Options

    Woman with a cold

    A mammogram can provide vital early detection assistance for effective breast cancer care. The National Cancer Institute discusses how mammograms help fight against breast cancer.

    Noticing the warning signs for prostate cancer is essential toward early detection and successful treatment. The Prostate Cancer Foundation lists these common symptoms.

    The annual National Health Education Week offers the American public the chance to become more informed about important healthcare and wellness issues.

    Halloween is one of the top three holidays for emergency care visits. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides an overview of essential Halloween safety tips .

    West Hills Hospital and Medical Center in West Hills, California provides quality healthcare treatment options for a wide array of medical issues. Call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (818) 676-4000 to learn more or to schedule an appointment.