• Why You Should Go to the ER Instead of Urgent Care

    Emergency rooms and urgent care clinics both meet crucial healthcare needs in their communities. Yet, there are distinct differences between emergency care and urgent care facilities. Since urgent care clinics are not equipped to handle serious or life-threatening medical emergencies, it’s important for patients to be able to identify medical emergencies that do require a trip to the emergency room at MountainView Hospital .

    Differences Between the ER and Urgent Care

    Some emergency care facilities are freestanding, but most are part of a larger hospital. Because of this, ERs have capabilities that urgent care clinics typically lack, such as comprehensive on-site imaging centers and laboratories. If a patient goes to an ER, he or she can be admitted directly to the hospital if need be. In contrast, a patient who goes to urgent care may later need to be transported to a hospital for monitoring and treatment. Another crucial difference is the staff. At an emergency care facility, there are emergency medicine physicians who have received extensive training in handling medical emergencies. At some urgent care facilities, patients are primarily treated by nursing professionals who may be supervised by a physician. And lastly, another significant difference between these two models of care is that emergency rooms are open 24/7, every day of the year. In contrast, urgent care facilities are typically closed at night and on major holidays.

    Medical Emergencies That Require Emergency Care

    Urgent care facilities can indeed handle many medical situations, such as mild to moderate respiratory infections and minor lacerations. However, only the ER of a hospital can quickly evaluate and intervene in life-threatening situations . These include stroke, heart attack, severe burns, seizures, and major trauma. Emergency care is recommended for patients who suffer from sudden confusion, sudden vision loss, respiratory difficulties, chest pain, and loss of consciousness, among others.

    Since 1996, MountainView Hospital has been a leading provider of superior emergency care for Las Vegas families. Our emergency care team is dedicated to maintaining ER wait times that are at or below the national average. Please call 911 immediately if you have a medical emergency; otherwise, call our Consult-A-Nurse line at (702) 233-5300.

  • Recognizing the Most Common Symptoms of Flu

    Influenza is a viral infection that can cause a range of mild to severe symptoms. It may also lead to serious complications, which can result in death. You can protect yourself and others around you from this infection by getting an annual flu shot. If you do contract the flu, an emergency care doctor may prescribe antiviral medications if you are at an increased risk of flu-related complications. Residents of the Las Vegas area who develop severe flu symptoms will find compassionate care at MountainView Hospital.

    Symptoms of Flu

    The severity of flu symptoms can range widely from patient to patient. Some patients recover at home, while others require emergency care. The most common symptoms of influenza include a sore throat, cough, muscle and body aches, and a high fever with chills. However, some people who get the flu do not have an elevated temperature. Other symptoms include fatigue, headaches, a runny or stuffy nose, watery eyes, sneezing, and swollen lymph nodes. Children are more likely than adults to suffer from gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting, and loss of appetite.

    Onset and Progression of Symptoms

    The symptoms of the flu can develop rapidly. Most people recover within a few days. However, you can spread the flu virus to others before you develop symptoms and about five days after the onset of symptoms.

    Emergency Symptoms of Flu

    Some patients develop severe flu symptoms or complications of the flu, which require emergency care. These complications may include pneumonia, bronchitis, and worsening of existing medical conditions like heart disease. It’s advisable to seek emergency care for symptoms such as difficulty breathing, chest or abdominal pain, confusion, dehydration, sudden dizziness, and fever with a rash.

    MountainView Hospital is your partner in preventive wellness. Our emergency care physicians encourage Las Vegas-area families to consider getting annual vaccinations to prevent the spread of influenza. If you have any concerns about getting a flu shot, you can speak with a registered nurse by calling (702) 233-5300.

  • Coping Strategies to Reduce Your Stress

    In response to stress, the human body increases blood flow to the brain and muscles, elevates the heart rate and blood pressure, and widens the airways. It also suppresses the immune system in preparation for inflammation. During the Stone Age, this stress response was necessary for survival and the body shut it off when the stressor was no longer present. But in modern society, many people experience maladaptive stress responses that can lead to serious health problems, including heart disease and digestive disorders. If you suffer from chronic stress or its health consequences, you can find the emergency care you need at MountainView Hospital—a heart hospital in Las Vegas.

    Change Your Response to Stress

    It may take some practice to consistently respond to stressors in a positive way. When under stress, it’s not uncommon for people to make a mountain out of a molehill. Take a step back and consider whether the situation is truly troubling or if you’re over-reacting. Another strategy is to use positive self-talk . For example, instead of thinking, “I can’t do this,” try to think, “I’m capable of doing this,” “I can get help with this,” or “I’ve done harder tasks than this before”.

    Give Yourself a Timeout

    Many parents use timeouts to encourage children to cease undesirable behavior, but it can also be used as a tool for stress management among adults. In today’s hectic society, it is well worth your time to sit and relax or meditate for 10 to 20 minutes each day. Turn off your electronic devices and find a calm, peaceful setting to practice some deep breathing.

    Consider Trying Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

    If you’re still having trouble dealing with stress, you might consider enlisting the help of a mental health counselor. Cognitive behavioral therapy is a type of “talk therapy” that emphasizes the connection between thought patterns and behaviors. This type of therapy can give you the tools you need to adapt to new challenges and modify your stress response.

    When you’re feeling under the weather, you can rely on the physicians at MountainView Hospital to listen carefully to your health concerns and provide expert medical advice. Our hospital is proud to serve Las Vegas-area residents with exceptional stroke care, emergency care, heart health services, robotic surgery, and bariatric weight loss. You can reach a registered nurse by calling (702) 233-5300.

  • Steering Clear of Holiday Light Accidents and Injuries

    Holiday lights are a festive way to decorate your home for the season. However, you should be aware that many people require emergency care each year because of injuries caused by holiday decorations. By following some simple safety guidelines, you can keep yourself and your family safe. In the event that an accident does occur, MountainView Hospital is here to assist patients in the Las Vegas area.

    Exercise Caution When Using Ladders

    One reason for emergency care visits during the holidays is falls from elevations. When it’s time to decorate the exterior of your home with strings of holiday lights, you should select a ladder that is at least three feet taller than the working surface. Place the ladder on level, firm ground or use leg levelers. Have a helper hold the bottom of the ladder while you climb and keep your weight centered on the rungs.

    Reduce the Risk of Electrical Burns and Fires

    Before you put up any holiday lights, check every inch of them for signs of damage. Avoid using lights with frayed wires or broken parts. Consider investing in LED holiday lights; unlike incandescent bulbs, LED lights are cool to the touch. Plug outdoor lights into circuits with ground fault circuit interrupters, or GFCIs. Throughout the holiday season, remember to turn off your lights before leaving your home or going to bed. Always keep extension cords and other electrical cords out of reach of children.

    Practicing Holiday Tree Safety

    Holiday trees are a common cause of and contributor to house fires during the holiday season . If you put up an artificial tree, select one that is labeled “flame retardant”. When choosing a live tree, find a fresh tree with needles that do not readily fall off. Cut a couple of inches from the trunk before setting it in the tree stand. It’s also important to water the tree every day to prevent it from drying out and becoming highly flammable.

    The emergency care team at MountainView Hospital is trained to handle any type of medical emergency, including burn injuries and fractures. If you or a loved one requires emergency care in the Las Vegas area, please call 911 for rapid transportation to our hospital. For non-emergent inquiries, you can contact a registered nurse at (702) 233-5300.