• A Look at the Warning Signs of Testicular Cancer

    When diagnosed in early stages, testicular cancer is very treatable through robotic surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. Being vigilant to the warning signs is a crucial part of an early diagnosis, so it is important for men to educate themselves about the potential symptoms. If you experience any of these signs, consider seeing your doctor for further evaluation.

    Lump or Swelling

    A lump or swelling in one testicle is the most common sign of testicular cancer. The lump is typically painless and may be as small as a pea, but can grow in size as the cancer progresses. Swelling may be accompanied by a feeling of heaviness or a change in the feeling of the scrotum. For example, you may notice tightness or firmness that wasn’t there previously. This symptom may be accompanied by fluid accumulation in the scrotum. Keep in mind that testicular cancer typically only causes symptoms in one testicle.

    Pain

    Although lumps and swelling caused by cancer are usually painless, the testicles themselves may become painful when cancer is present. Pain may also be felt in the scrotum. Cancer-related pain can occur independently of swelling—this means that testicular pain caused by cancer can happen even if there is no lump present, which is why reporting testicular pain to your doctor is important, even if there are no other symptoms present.

    Gynecomastia

    Gynecomastia is a condition in which breast tissue in men grows. In some cases, testicular cancer triggers the release of hormones that cause gynecomastia to occur. When this happens, men may experience breast growth or tenderness in the breast area.

    The Cancer Center at Riverside Community Hospital offers comprehensive cancer care and a variety of support services for a range of different types of cancer with CyberKnife treatment, robotic surgery, and more. Call us today at (951) 788-3463 for more information about our cancer treatments as well as the other services offered at our Riverside hospital, including organ transplant, bariatric weight loss, and heart care.

  • What Can You Expect When You Visit the ER?

    Whether you are having a heart health emergency or have an injury that needs immediate attention, knowing what to expect when you visit the ER can make the experience less stressful. When you go to the hospital for emergency treatment, here is a look at the process you will go through as you receive care.

    Triage

    Triage is the first thing that happens when you go to the ER and is a crucial part of the care process. An intake nurse or another care provider will review your symptoms with you to determine the severity of your emergency. The purpose of triage is to ensure that patients with life-threatening issues receive the care they need quickly, and is more useful than seeing patients on a first come, first served basis. For instance, a patient having a heart attack or stroke will be taken back for treatment before someone with a minor cut, regardless of the order in which they arrived.

    Diagnosis and Treatment

    When you are taken into a treatment room in the ER, your vital signs will be measured and a doctor or nurse will ask you about your symptoms in more detail. If necessary, the ER doctor may refer you for diagnostic testing, such as an X-ray or an EKG, to determine the cause of your symptoms. When the ER doctor is confident that he or she has the correct diagnosis, you will either receive treatment in the ER or be admitted to the hospital for more extensive care.

    Discharge

    If you are not being admitted to the hospital, you will be discharged once your treatment is complete. Before you are discharged, a nurse will review your diagnosis and instructions for home care with you. You will also receive a detailed summary of your visit, diagnosis, and any necessary prescriptions, as well as a referral to a specialist for further evaluation if needed.

    The ER at Riverside Community Hospital treats patients in need 24 hours a day and is home to a Level II Trauma Center and 50 treatment areas. The ER is also a Certified Primary Stroke Center and Accredited Chest Pain Center with access to our heart hospital in Riverside. For more information about all of our hospital services, please call (951) 788-3463.

  • How Does Stress Affect Your Health During Menopause?

    Chronic stress is detrimental to your health whenever it occurs, but it can be particularly difficult during menopause. Unfortunately, the link between menopause and stress is often overlooked and sometimes dismissed. During April, which is Stress Awareness Month, take the time to discuss your concerns about stress and menopause with your OBGYN or another healthcare provider. Help is available that can ease your stress and resolve the symptoms associated with it.

    The Link Between Menopause and Stress

    Menopause can be a very stressful time for women. The changes that are occurring can trigger insecurities about aging and maturity, and the uncomfortable symptoms can lead to frustration. These feelings are often exacerbated by the hormonal changes that lead to mood swings. Menopause also tends to occur during a time that is rife with stress for women, as they may find themselves with teenage children or aging parents that need care. This combination of factors can lead to intense levels of stress that could trigger a number of health complications.

    Stress and Health Problems

    At any time, chronic stress can cause depression, gastrointestinal problems, headaches, and an increased risk of high blood pressure and heart problems. Combining stress and menopause exacerbates these risks. For instance, hormonal changes during menopause can cause depression that in turn is compounded by stress. The risk of heart disease increases for women during and after menopause and stress further raises that risk. Stress can also interfere with sleep, which tends to be disturbed during menopause.

    Ways to Fight Back Against Stress

    If stress seems out of control during menopause, consider talking to your OBGYN. There may be ways of better controlling your symptoms to reduce the stress they cause. Lifestyle changes can also help. Focus on getting more exercise, eating well and ensuring you get enough sleep each night.

    You don’t have to cope with menopause stress alone. Consider making an appointment with an OBGYN in Riverside at Riverside Community Hospital. For a referral to an OBGYN or additional information about our women and children’s services, please call (951) 788-3463.

  • Autism Awareness: What All Parents Should Know

    April is Autism Awareness Month and marks a good opportunity for parents to educate themselves about the disorder and the ways it could affect their own children and the children in their community. Pregnant mothers can discuss autism with their OBGYN specialist during pregnancy and ask for reliable resources to prepare themselves for the potential of autism. The following overview will also help parents arm themselves with important information about autism.

    Autism Is Increasingly Common

    Autism, which is sometimes called autism spectrum disorder or ASD, is more common than ever before in children in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported in 2014 that autism occurs in one in 68 births in the U.S. overall and in one in every 54 births of boys. This rate is almost twice that of a previous study released in 2004. The increase in diagnoses does not necessarily mean that something is causing autism to increase, but rather doctors and parents alike are now more aware of the symptoms. Because individuals with autism require lifetime support, it can be helpful for parents to prepare for the risk during pregnancy with the help of their OBGYN provider.

    Symptoms Begin Early

    Often, the symptoms of autism are present during infancy, but they may become more apparent after age two. During checkups, your child’s pediatrician will perform developmental screening tests to look for the signs of autism. Not babbling or cooing by 12 months, not gesturing by 12 months, not saying single words by 16 months, not saying two-word phrases by 16 months, or any decline in language or social skills are considered developmental delays. While these symptoms don’t mean that your child has autism, they may require further investigation.

    Early Diagnosis Matters

    Every family’s experience with autism is different, but the importance of early diagnosis is relevant across the board. Early intervention improves treatment outcomes and helps to improve the quality of life for all family members.

    Autism is a difficult diagnosis, but support is available at Riverside Community Hospital from our women and children’s services team. Get a referral to a physician or learn more about other services, including robotic surgery, organ transplant, and bariatric weight loss in Riverside, by calling (951) 788-3463.