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Friday, April 18, 2014

WHERE THE HEART IS “Caring People Caring For People”

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Which doctor to see and when

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omen who split their health management among different doctors may not know which doctor to turn to when their health comes into question. They may ask themselves, “Is this issue best addressed by a family doctor or a gynecologist?” Answers to such questions depend on personal preferences and the type of condition you’re looking to treat. Family doctors or general practitioners may be qualified to provide many of the screenings and services for which a woman may visit a gynecologist or women’s health practice. Such doctors can perform routine pelvic examinations, oversee screenings for cervical cancer and conduct breast exams to check for lumps and other abnormalities, just like a woman’s specialty doctor may run tests to calculate body mass index or check for cholesterol levels.

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A woman who feels more comfortable with one specific doctor may see him or her for a variety of health concerns, provided that doctor offers certain services. However, there are instances when certain healthcare questions are best answered by specialists. The following information can help women determine which doctor to see when certain situations arise. Annual physicals: Gynecologists and family doctors can conduct physical examinations. Both can order blood lab tests and urinalysis to check cholesterol levels and for any vitamin deficiencies. Heart rate, blood pressure, weight, and height are other screenings that can be handled at either office. Bacterial and yeast infections or urinary tract infections: A general practitioner or gynecologist can address these infections. However, some women feel more comfortable discussing genital issues with their gynecologists. A gynecologist may be more experienced at identifying problems and ordering appropriate follow-up exams. A family doctor may not require an examination unless you request it and may treat broad symptoms. Colds and coughs: In theory, a gynecologist may be able to diagnose and treat common health ailments. But the majority of a gynecologist’s work concerns the female reproductive system, so common colds and coughs are best left to general practitioners who diagnose respiratory and bronchial conditions daily.

Mood disorders: If changes in mood seem to stem from hormones or the result of a pregnancy, a gynecologist or obstetrician may have treatment options available that can alleviate specific triggers. Many women initially turn to a family doctor if they are experiencing depression or changes in mood or behavior. Both a family doctor or a gynecologist may refer a patient to a mental health specialist if the situation seems to warrant more action. Nutrition and weight loss: Many patients see a family doctor to seek advice on adopting a healthy diet. Some medical offices have a nutritionist on staff who can offer food counseling and exercise advise. Infertility: It is best to visit a gynecologist or obstetrician to talk about any infertility issues. Such doctors have more intimate knowledge of the female reproductive system and could be more learned regarding the latest therapies and studies pertaining to fertility. Cancer screening: PAP tests and breast exams can be performed at either doctor’s office, although patients may feel more comfortable if a gynecologist performs these screenings. It is important to note that not all gynecologists are obstetricians. Some handle women’s reproductive issues but do not deliver children. Patients who prefer a doctor knowledgeable about reproductive health and won’t be busy handling child deliveries should select a gynecologist.

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Both family practitioners and doctors who cater to women’s health can perform many of the same healthcare screenings and services.


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Friday, April 18, 2014

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of How to prevent injury when exercising outdoors Many people take advantage of nice weather by exercising in the great outdoors. Some might skip the treadmill at the gym in favor of running at the park, while others join recreational sports leagues for some exercise and fun in the sun.

certain areas in nature might not be suitable to all athletes. For example, mountain biking is a popular sport, but not all But exercising outdoors carries its mountain biking share of risk. Unlike gyms where machinery trails are the same. clearly advises members about proper form Some trails are and warns against lifting excessive weight, ideal for beginners, Mother Nature comes with no such while others are warning labels. As a result, it’s up to men best ridden by and women to make injury prevention a more seasoned priority when taking their exercise routine riders. When your outside. The following are a handful of outdoor exercise preventative measures that can help regimen will be exercise enthusiasts avoid injury as they taking you off the attempt to get or stay fit in the great beaten path, be outdoors. sure you know the terrain before you Study the terrain. Part of the danger start your workout. of exercising outdoors is that, unlike a gym Speak with fellow fitted with machines designed for the sole outdoor purpose of exercise, nature’s terrain is enthusiasts about unpredictable. Safety features you take for which trails or granted at the gym, such as padded floors, courses are best for Next page are nonexistent outdoors. In addition,

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CITIZEN’S NEWS

Friday, April 18, 2014

of How to prevent injury From previous page

someone of your skill level and adhere to their recommendations. When exercising on a trail for the first time, bring a friend along so someone can go get help should an accident happen.

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Stay hydrated. Dehydration is another cause of injury when athletes exercise in the great outdoors. Gyms have water fountains that allow members to take a drink of water when they’re thirsty. That water can help prevent dehydration, which can be painful and greatly increase your risk of injury. When exercising outdoors, be sure to bring along enough water so you can stay hydrated regardless of how far away from civilization you may find yourself. Honestly assess your abilities. When exercising outdoors, it’s easy to overdo it. Warm air and sunshine have a way of encouraging athletes to prolong their workout routines or push themselves a little harder. But pushing yourself past your limits can considerably increase your risk of injury. While it’s easy to stay within your limits when exercising indoors, where the environment may encourage you to cut a workout short rather than extend it, it’s easy to overextend yourself outdoors when

the weather is nice. So it’s important for men and women to make an honest assessment of their abilities before beginning an outdoor exercise regimen. Once you know what your body can and can’t handle, you can tailor your outdoor workout to one that makes the most of nice weather without putting your health at risk. Don’t challenge Mother Nature. One of the biggest risks with regard to exercising outdoors is the tendency some athletes have to ignore the elements. Avoid working out in especially cold or hot weather, as such conditions are not conducive to exercise. Extreme weather also reduces the number of people outside, which means there won’t be as many people around to help you if you suffer an injury, lose your way or need help with your gear. Exercising outdoors is a great way to enjoy nice weather, but limit such workouts to those times of year when temperatures are most conducive to outdoor activity. Working out in the great outdoors is a great way to make the most of a beautiful day. But athletes must still take certain precautionary measures to reduce their risk of injury when exercising outdoors.


Friday, April 18, 2014

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Citizen’s News

Eyes on health: What your eyes can tell doctors

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Certain medical conditions can be detected early during routine eye examinations.

People who have been putting off eye examinations may want to call their opthalmologists to schedule an appointment. That’s because vision checkups can do more than protect your eyes. By examining the eyes, doctors may have a window into health problems affecting other areas of the body. Researchers recently discovered a link between detected retinal amyloid plaques and the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. While evidence was found in lab mice, autopsies of at least eight Alzheimer’s disease patients have also shown amyloid plaques, which are known to interfere with memory and other mental functions, present in the retinas. Doctors at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles, Calif., are gearing up for larger studies of humans to determine if an Alzheimer’s imaging technique can be perfected. Dementia is not the only thing that doctors may be able to detect through an eye exam. Jaundice in the whites of the eyes may indicate liver disease, and early warning signs of diabetes may be detectable in the eyes. The American Academy of Opthalmology says the eye is the only place where doctors can see veins, arteries and a nerve without surgery, and eye examinations are increasingly being relied on to gauge overall health.

around the eye, darkness may result. This symptom in conjunction with persistent nasal congestion could be a sure sign of allergies. High cholesterol The presence of bumpy, yellowish patches on the eyelid, known as xanthelasma palpebra, is a warning sign of high cholesterol, which is often initially diagnosed during a routine eye exam. Cancer Some cancer metastases can be detected during an eye exam. The presence of a bump or brown spot on the eyelid also may be indicative of skin cancer. Many malignant eyelid tumors are basal-cell carcinoma. If the spot is brown, it’s more likely to be malignant melanoma. Thyroid issues When the outer one-third of the brow (the part closest to the ear) begins to disappear on its own, this is a common sign of thyroid disease. The thyroid helps regulate metabolism, and thyroid hormones are essential to hair production. Hair loss may occur elsewhere, but is much more visible in the brows.

The following are a few additional conditions that may be detected through the eyes.

Clogged arteries Blockages in the smaller veins in the retina may indicate clogs caused by arterial plaque. This will show up as a retinal occlusion in a visual exam. If blood vessels in the eyes are blocked, clogged arteries may be present elsewhere in the body, so a cardiology workup may be ordered.

Allergies Patients may be referred to an allergy specialist if they exhibit dark under-eye circles. While this can be a sign of aging, dark circles, sometimes referred to as “allergic shiners,” also may indicate certain allergies. When clogged sinuses cause a blockage of blood flow in the nasal passages

Bell’s Palsy The inability to close one eye or to control tear production in that eye may be a sign of Bell’s palsy. This is a condition of the nervous system that controls facial muscles, causing temporary paralysis in one side of the face. Sometimes Bell’s palsy follows a viral or bacterial infection.

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