• Numbers to Know to Stay in Touch with Your Heart Health

    Heart with heartbeat

    Even though you may be taking all the required precautions to avoid heart disease, you can’t truly know your heart health unless you know your numbers. What are these numbers? To have peace of mind that your heart is free from heart disease, you have to know your blood pressure, cholesterol level, and body mass index. While you can determine your BMI on your own, only a qualified physician can accurately gauge your blood pressure and cholesterol. If you have not recently been tested for them, make an appointment to see a doctor as soon as possible.

    Your Blood Pressure
    Your blood pressure indicates just how hard your heart is working to pump blood through your arteries. The higher the number, the more force is being exerted against the arteries, which can result in multiple heart health issues. Your blood pressure number is actually comprised of two figures. The first determines the force against the arteries as blood rushes through them. The second assesses the pressure against the arteries in the rest period between heart contractions. Blood pressure higher than 120/80 may indicate a heart health problem.

    Your Cholesterol Level
    Cholesterol is another factor that can impact your heart health. In general, cholesterol is not a bad substance; the body requires it for many functions. However, too much of it can negatively affect the heart. Any cholesterol not made by your body results from your food choices. Only animal products contain cholesterol, which is why you may want to reevaluate your meals and consider exchanging fatty meats for lean proteins such as fish and chicken. In addition to these dietary changes, see a doctor to have your cholesterol levels checked.

    Your Body Mass Index
    You may not think your weight is a problem, but knowing your body mass index may shed some light on whether you need to modify it. Even a few extra pounds can increase your risk for heart disease, so be sure to monitor your weight to make sure that you aren’t incurring any unnecessary heart disease risks.

    West Hills Hospital & Medical Center provides thorough cardiovascular examinations for patients in the greater West Hills region. We also offer an iTriage service for those who may be experiencing a heart emergency. For more information, call (818) 676-4000.

  • Learn More About Your Heart Health


    You can take control of your heart health. WomensHealth.gov goes into detail about how to ward off heart disease .

    Stroke can also result from poor heart health. The National Stroke Association provides an overview of the different stroke conditions.

    How do you know if you have the flu? The National Institutes of Health gives readers a list of common flu symptoms .

    Taking steps like getting a flu vaccination are essential to avoiding the flu . This page from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explains what you can do to protect your health.

    If you have the flu , Flu.gov has some helpful tips on how to make your recovery as swift and comfortable as possible.

    West Hills Hospital & Medical Center has a wide array of preventative and treatment options to address all your healthcare needs. Our West Hills emergency care and cardiovascular services can make sure that you receive the attention you need whether you’re suffering from flu or are experiencing the symptoms of a heart attack. Call (818) 676-4000 or visit our website to learn more about how we can safeguard your health now and in the future.

  • Answers to Common Questions About Heart Disease


    Many Americans have been affected by heart disease . Whether you have a relative who has suffered a heart attack or you yourself have been diagnosed with high cholesterol, heart disease manifests in varying ways and degrees. Though it is a rampant problem in the United States, not enough people understand the risk factors inherent to heart disease or how to identify its presence. The following questions and answers can help you learn more about this serious condition and how to prevent it.

    Am I at risk for heart disease?
    Multiple factors can contribute to heart disease. Some risks, such as age or gender, cannot be changed. However, you can largely control your likelihood of getting heart disease by altering other risk factors tied to lifestyle habits. For instance, cease smoking immediately. You should also make it a priority to keep your weight at a healthy level and engage in a regular fitness regimen, as both obesity and inactivity can lead to heart disease.

    What are the signs of heart disease?
    Physicians stress taking preventative measures to avoid heart disease because its signs go largely unnoticed until a severe complication occurs. Symptoms such as high blood pressure or elevated cholesterol are not generally evident without medical testing. Knowing what to look for in the event of a heart attack can potentially save your life, though. Signs such as nausea, breathing trouble, and chest pain can each indicate a heart attack.

    What can I do to minimize my risk for heart disease?
    As mentioned, eliminating damaging habits and incorporating heart-healthy ones is essential for protecting yourself from heart disease. Because the early indicators of heart disease can come on without notice, you must also make regular cardiovascular checkups with a medical professional. Only a qualified heart specialist can either give you a clean bill of health or identify early heart disease signs.

    When was the last time you had your heart health checked? West Hills Hospital & Medical Center can see to it that your cardiovascular health is symptom-free when you make an appointment at our West Hills hospital . Call (818) 676-4000 or visit our website for more information on our full line of services. 

  • A Quick Guide to Flu Symptoms

    Though symptoms tend to vary from person to person, the flu can be diagnosed by the presence of several common signs. This video discusses what you can expect when you get the flu.

    The flu frequently causes high fever or feverish sensations . Many people develop a runny nose or sore throat as well. Coughing is common, as is extreme fatigue. Some cases of flu can also bring on vomiting or diarrhea. Though you should always contact an emergency care center to rule out the possibility of another condition, most flu sufferers can recover with rest and fluids. If your symptoms worsen, you should contact a medical professional for further advice.

    West Hills Hospital & Medical Center offers expert emergency care for patients suffering from acute flu symptoms or complications. To determine if you have the flu, use our Consult-A-Nurse referral system or call (818) 676-4000.

  • Items to Have on Hand When You Are Fighting the Flu

    Having the flu is no fun, but it can be more tolerable when you have the right flu aids. Before you take any form of medication, including those from your local drugstore, be sure to consult with a medical professional first. Whether in person or over the phone, inform a doctor of all the drugs and medications you plan to take. In the effort to get well, you may inadvertently exceed the recommended dose, which can cause greater problems than a fever and cough. To help manage your flu symptoms, keep the following items on hand.

    Ill woman covered with blanket holding a tea cup

    Hydrating Liquids

    Though some drugs may alleviate particular flu symptoms, nothing works better than water to flush out toxins and keep the body hydrated . Be diligent about consuming hydrating liquids such as water, broth, or electrolyte-rich drinks, and stay away from coffee and alcohol, which will deplete your body of moisture.

    Cough Relievers

    Some flu sufferers may develop a painful and persistent cough. While liquids can lessen the discomfort of a scratchy throat, you may also want to take advantage of specially formulated lozenges, sprays, and syrups that can numb the throat on a temporary basis.


    A stuffy nose is another common sign of the flu. Having a humidifier on hand can go a long way toward relieving your sinuses of congestion. Certain lozenges and nasal sprays can also break up the thick mucus that prevents easy inhalation and exhalation.

    Fever Reducers

    Should you suffer from a flu-induced fever, be sure to monitor it carefully. If your doctor feels confident that you do not require professional care, you can take medication to decrease symptoms. If approved by a doctor, both acetaminophen and ibuprofen can help reduce your fever.

    West Hills Hospital & Medical Center offers comprehensive emergency care for those experiencing severe flu symptoms. If you’re not sure what your symptoms indicate, our Consult-A-Nurse service can help. For more information on all the healthcare options that our West Hills facility provides, call (818) 676-4000 or visit our website.

  • Exploring the Medical Costs of Obesity

    Obesity can impact every aspect of your life. Excessive weight not only influences your physical health, but also affects your financial well-being. Because obesity so frequently leads to serious health conditions, which demand extensive and costly medical care, many people find themselves burdened by both unwanted weight and mounting bills. The following information provides an overview of conditions and expenses people can expect. If you suffer from obesity, consult with a physician who can discuss your surgical weight loss options.

    Diabetes patient measure glucose level blood test

    Heart Disease

    Heart disease is the most pressing health problem in the United States, in large part because of the rising rate of obesity . Heart disease can manifest in a number of ways, from high blood pressure to elevated cholesterol to heart attack. At best, obese individuals need medication to regular these conditions. At worst, they may be sidelined by a heart attack for days or weeks, resulting in costs for hospital stays and missed workdays.


    Stroke is an extremely serious condition. Though medical advances have provided for faster and more effective care, many patients still suffer from severe disability after stroke has occurred. This means temporary or permanent work leave for some. For others, it can also translate into years of physical therapy to regain function and independence. However, when you take steps to eliminate obesity, you also significantly reduce your risk for stroke.


    Under the best of circumstances, those with diabetes must frequently take medications to stabilize their condition. Even when under superior care, however, diabetic individuals may suffer complications that impact their health and financial well-being. Many experience difficulties with extremity function, vision capability, and hearing capacity. Once diabetes is diagnosed, managing it becomes a lifelong responsibility. Prevent the onset of diabetes and its accompanying problems by managing your obesity now.

    West Hills Hospital & Medical Center can help you take control of your obesity with our bariatric weight loss services. To schedule a consultation at our West Hills facility, call (818) 676-4000.

  • Pregnancy in the Third Trimester: Are You Ready to Deliver?

    Once you have reached your third trimester of pregnancy, it is ideal if you have started taking childbirth classes and preparing your home for the new baby. However, there is no need to panic if you feel behind on your planning for parenthood. Here are some simple steps you can take to catch up and feel ready to welcome your baby to the world.

    New born baby

    Take a weekend childbirth class

    At West Hills Hospital, we offer Childbirth Weekend Express classes to help parents with busy schedules get educated about labor and delivery and newborn care. This class takes place in two five-hour sessions over a single weekend so you can use it to get a jump start on preparing for childbirth or get caught up if you are already in the third trimester.

    Choose a pediatrician

    The American Pregnancy Association recommends that expectant parents choose a pediatrician in the second or third trimester of pregnancy. If you have not already found a pediatrician that you like, West Hills Hospital’s Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line can connect you with doctors in the area so your search is easier.

    Set time aside for yourself

    Even if you do not feel fully prepared, it is important to keep your stress low so that you can sleep well and stay healthy. Enjoy the free time that you have before the baby arrives and use stress-relief techniques like massage or warm baths to maintain a positive attitude as your due date approaches.

    For all the help you need preparing for childbirth and parenting, visit West Hills Hospital & Medical Center. Check out our upcoming classes and Birth Center tours by visiting our website or calling us at (818) 676-4000. From the first trimester to newborn care, we are there to help you give your baby the best possible start for good health.