• Answers to your questions about heart catheterization

    Cardiac catheterization , or heart catheterization, is a procedure that allows a heart health specialist to evaluate how well the heart is working. This procedure is performed to diagnose the problem, but the heart care specialist may also perform treatments during it. If you have any questions about your heart health, the specialists at MountainView Hospital are always here to help.

    Why do I need heart catheterization?

    Your doctor may recommend heart catheterization if you’re suspected of having heart disease. Heart catheterization can accomplish the following:

    • Locate blockages in the blood vessels
    • Measure oxygen levels
    • Evaluate the heart’s pumping ability
    • Check for heart defects
    • Check for heart valve problems

    Is heart catheterization the same as an angiogram?

    An angiogram is an imaging scan of an artery. It uses contrast dye to get a better image. Heart catheterization is a type of angiogram of the heart and arteries.

    How can heart catheterization treat the problem?

    During the heart catheterization, your doctor may perform other procedures, such as coronary angioplasty. Coronary angioplasty is used when blockages are found in the blood vessels. It works by using a special balloon to press the blockage against the artery wall and widen the blood vessel. In other words, coronary angioplasty during heart catheterization can quickly restore blood flow to the heart when a patient is having a heart attack.

    Will I be asleep during the procedure?

    It isn’t usually necessary to place patients under general anesthesia during heart catheterization. The procedure is minimally invasive, requiring only a small cut to insert a thin catheter into the blood vessel. Most patients are quite comfortable with a local numbing agent and a sedative to help them relax.

    How long does heart catheterization take?

    Most patients are finished in one to two hours, but others may need two to four hours. Your doctor might ask you to stay at the hospital overnight or you may be able to return home the same day. A responsible adult will need to take you home and stay with you for a while.

    MountainView Hospital is renowned for our superior heart care. At our modern hospital in Las Vegas, our specialists provide a continuum of advanced medical services—from diagnosis to intervention to rehabilitation. Call a registered nurse at our heart hospital at (702) 962-5021 or visit our Heart Center online to read about our state-of-the-art catheterization labs.

  • What can you expect during testicular cancer treatment?

    Testicular cancer may affect one or both of the testes, which are located in a man’s scrotum. Testicular cancer is a particularly challenging type of cancer for men to cope with because of the potential for long-term sexual health complications. However, an experienced oncologist at MountainView Hospital can recommend the latest clinically proven treatments to give you the best possible outcome.

    Treatment planning for testicular cancer

    Before treatment begins, your oncologist will carefully evaluate all of your medical information to plan the most appropriate course of treatment for you. You’ll receive counseling on the types of treatment recommended and the potential complications. Since infertility is a possibility, you may be counseled about your options for preserving fertility. Freezing your sperm is an effective way to improve your chances of fathering a child after your recovery.

    Surgery for testicular cancer

    Surgery is a primary treatment for testicular cancer patients. The goal of surgery is to remove all or as much of the cancer as possible. The surgeon may remove one or both testicles. Nearby lymph nodes may be removed as well. The lymph nodes are part of the lymphatic system, which plays an important role in the body’s immune function.

    Radiation therapy for testicular cancer

    It’s common for patients to have multiple types of cancer treatments . Your oncologist may recommend having radiation therapy in addition to your surgery. This treatment targets a beam of radiation at the site to kill cancer cells. The treatment itself takes just a few minutes, but getting you into the right position can take much longer.

    Chemotherapy for testicular cancer

    Your oncologist may recommend one or more chemotherapy drugs. These are given in cycles, either by mouth or intravenously. Chemotherapy is well-known for causing hair loss and nausea, but other side effects might also occur. These may include intense fatigue and a “foggy brain.” Of course, not everyone will experience the same side effects. It’s important to take good care of yourself during cancer treatment with the following steps:

    • Getting plenty of rest
    • Eating nutritious meals
    • Staying hydrated
    • Following the oncologist’s instructions
    • Alerting your oncologist to side effects
    • Asking others for help

    Skillful oncologists, specially trained clinical pharmacists and certified oncology nurses care for our patients’ every need at MountainView Hospital’s Oncology Unit. In all that we do, we continually strive for healthcare excellence to give you the superior care you deserve. You can contact our hospital in Las Vegas at (702) 962-5021.

  • What are the best and worst ways to cope with stress?

    Everyone experiences stress from time to time. Occasionally, the stress response can even be beneficial. But in most cases, chronic or severe stress wreaks havoc on physical and mental health. Here at MountainView Hospital, we understand that living life well is just as important as living longer. If you’re having trouble coping, please come in and speak with your family physician. It’s our mission to improve your quality of life.

    Do proactively work to prevent stress

    One of the best ways to cope with stress is to prevent it. Spend a few weeks keeping a daily journal of what triggers your stress. Then, identify your most common stressors. These might include:

    • Traffic
    • Deadlines at work
    • Misbehaving kids
    • Bills
    • Fights with a spouse or partner
    • Caregiving duties

    Most stressors can be attributed to not having enough time or money. While you can’t add more hours to the day, you can prioritize your responsibilities and give yourself permission to let unimportant tasks go uncompleted. You can also look for ways to make your life a little easier, such as by setting up automatic bill payments. Small changes can make a big difference for your stress.

    Don’t try to control uncontrollable things

    It isn’t possible to prevent every stress trigger, but you can work to modify your stress response. If you have a defiant teenager, for instance, you can stop yourself from getting into an argument. Take a deep breath, tell your teen that you aren’t happy with the situation and that you’ll have a discussion later when both of you have calmed down.

    Do use positive self-talk

    Positive self-talk might take some practice, but it can effectively stop stress from being overwhelming . Here’s a look at some common negative statements people tell themselves:

    • “I messed that up again.”
    • “I can’t handle this.”
    • “Nothing I do is right.”

    When you catch yourself thinking these negative statements, turn them into positive statements. For instance, tell yourself the following:

    • “I can learn from my mistake and do better next time.”
    • “This will be easier if I take it one step at a time.”
    • “I’m only human. I’m allowed to make mistakes.”

    Do enjoy pleasant diversions

    Everyone deserves some time to relax and find enjoyment in simple activities. You can cope with stress by setting aside just a few minutes each day to do something you love. Work on a quilting project, read your favorite book or go for a walk.

    For compassionate care in all stages of life, your family can turn to the trusted specialists at MountainView Hospital . Our community hospital in Las Vegas strives to make your medical care as stress-free as possible. We’ve even built stress management into our cardiac rehabilitation programs. Call a nurse at (702) 962-5021.

  • A look back on the advancement of lung cancer treatment

    Lung cancer is one of the most common types of cancer and it is also the leading cause of cancer death. Every year in the U.S., lung cancer claims more lives than breast, colon and prostate cancer combined. Despite these grim statistics, there is hope for lung cancer patients and their families. Hospitals across the U.S., including MountainView Hospital , are looking toward new techniques and medical technology to give their patients the best possible outcome.

    Lung cancer surgery

    When you watch this featured video, you’ll hear a cardiothoracic surgeon at MountainView Hospital explain the rapid evolution of lung cancer surgery from the 1990s to the present day. He discusses how patients previously underwent invasive, painful surgeries that required controlled fractures of the ribs and a very large incision. Now, cardiothoracic surgeons can use video-assisted thoracic surgery to treat small tumors. This approach requires much smaller incisions and may sometimes be performed via robotic surgery. Clinicians are currently assessing the use of this technology for larger lung tumors.

    Lung cancer radiation therapy

    Specialists can now use real-time imaging techniques to improve radiation therapy for lung cancer patients . Previously, radiologists struggled to improve the accurate targeting of the radiation beam to the tumor. The tumor moves during the treatment as the patient breathes in and out. Now, real-time imaging technology allows the doctor to precisely target the tumor immediately prior to delivering the radiation dose. As a result, patients may experience fewer side effects.

    Lung cancer chemotherapy

    Chemotherapy drugs don’t produce the same effects for each patient. It’s challenging for oncologists to predict which drugs are best for any given patient. To fix this problem, researchers are identifying the patterns of genes in tumors to determine which tumors will respond best to certain drugs. Other clinical trials are focusing on identifying combinations of chemotherapy drugs that will be more effective while causing fewer side effects. The safety of these drugs is particularly important for older patients who are less able to tolerate certain drugs.

    The dedicated Oncology Unit at MountainView Hospital is a peaceful, comfortable unit equipped with the latest medical technology and staffed by caring specialists. Many of our hospital staff members in Las Vegas are cancer survivors who understand the unique challenges you and your family face. Call our nurse referral line at (702) 962-5021 for the answers to your questions.