• Keeping Your Family Safe as the Temperature Rises Outside

    Happy child in a swimming pool

    The summer months are fast approaching, which means excellent travel opportunities, outdoor activities, and school breaks. However, the summer is also a time when serious accidents and injuries are more likely to occur. Therefore, it is important to get your family prepared for a safe summer so that you do not have to interrupt your seasonal fun with trips to the emergency room. Here are a few warm weather safety guidelines from Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center to keep your family healthy and safe all summer long.

    Practice Pool Safety
    If you have a pool at home, you should have it surrounded by a secure fence and locked gate so that your children cannot get to the water without supervision. Whenever young members of the family are swimming at home or in public pools, there should be at least one parent or babysitter present to supervise activity in the water. Drowning can occur in a matter of seconds, so pool safety should always be taken seriously.

    Encourage Proper Hydration
    Every member of the family should drink plenty of water during the summer, especially when spending extended periods of time outside. You can make sure that young children stay hydrated during outdoor play by setting up hourly breaks for water and healthy hydrating snacks such as fruit. Reusable water bottles are excellent for the whole family to keep on hand, as they will keep water close by and serve as a reminder to drink more of it.

    Use Sunscreen Every Day
    Skin cancer prevention should be a top priority during the summer, and sunscreen use is the first step in reducing your risk for skin cancer. You should select a sunscreen with broad spectrum protection and an SPF of 30 or higher.

    For more tips on staying healthy this summer, consult Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center in Thousand Oaks. We can provide you and your family with healthy education to keep you safe, and we offer accurate, prompt emergency care through our dedicated Emergency Department with wait times averaging less than 15 minutes. You can learn more about our hospital services or find answers to your medical questions by calling our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (805) 497-2727 or by visiting our website .

  • What You Need to Know to Reduce Your Chances of Stroke

    Brain stroke

    Stroke is not only the fourth leading cause of death in the United States, but it is the primary cause of long-term disability among American adults. What’s even more shocking than these staggering statistics is that stroke is preventable in about 80% of cases. Therefore, stroke prevention should be a priority in your healthy lifestyle guided by the caring staff at Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center. Here is a look at some of the stroke prevention facts to know during National Stroke Awareness Month this May.

    Stroke has silent risk factors.
    A large number of stroke cases are ischemic strokes, which are caused by blood clots in the blood vessels leading to the brain. Clots of this nature are likely to develop in individuals who have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or unstable blood sugar. These risk factors do not tend to show symptoms until serious complications arise, so it is important to see your doctor for check-ups to measure your circulatory health.

    Simple changes can dramatically lower your risk.
    You do not have to drastically change your lifestyle to take control of your stroke risk. Small steps can significantly lower your risk by helping you to lose weight, improve your circulation, and drive down your bad cholesterol levels. These steps include adding one to two hours of weekly exercise to your routine, reducing salt and saturated fats in your diet, and avoiding tobacco use. If you are living with diabetes, you may need to implement a few extra changes—including medication management and regular communication with your doctor—to reduce your stroke risk.

    For a more personalized look at your stroke risk and strategies to lower it, consult Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center in Thousand Oaks. Our Certified Primary Stroke Center has earned the Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award from the American Stroke Association, and we are available 24/7 to provide you and your loved ones with the specialized care needed to survive and thrive following a traumatic stroke. Learn more about our stroke care and prevention services on our website or give us a call through our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (805) 497-2727.

  • Palliative Care: For the Person with Lymphedema


    Integrating Palliative Care within the Lymphedema patient’s healthcare focuses on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain, and stress of Lymphedema. Its overall goal is to improve the quality of life for both the patient and the family.
    Join Laura Zempel, RN, MSW, CHPN, Palliative Care Nurse on staff at Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center as she discusses “Understanding Palliative Care for the Person with Lymphedema” at the monthly meeting of the Lymphedema Support Group sponsored by Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center.
    This month’s meeting will be held Wednesday, May 29, 2013 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. in the cafeteria at the East Campus of Los Robles Hospital , 150 Via Merida, Westlake Village, CA 91362. Catherine Hines, P.T., C.L.T. and Charlene Anderson, PT, CLT are the group facilitator.

  • Eating to Reduce Your Heart Health Risk

    If you are concerned about your heart health, making some simple changes to your diet can significantly reduce your risk for conditions that lead to heart disease, including high blood pressure and high cholesterol. In this video, you will hear about recent research that has shown the beneficial qualities of starting the day with protein. Healthy sources of protein—such as soy and low-fat milk—help to lower systolic blood pressure, which will help to keep your heart strong for life.

    At Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center, we offer complete cardiac care for patients who are concerned about prevention, rehabilitation, or treatment of heart disease and other serious cardiac conditions. To schedule screenings to manage your heart health, contact us through our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (805) 497-2727.

  • Understanding Stroke Care


    When an individual shows signs of a stroke—drooping facial features, loss of control in the extremities, and trouble producing or understanding simple statements—it is time to call 9-1-1 for emergency care. A stroke is a sudden and serious condition in which blood flow is cut off to part of the brain. Immediate medical attention is necessary to restore blood flow and limit the number of brain cells damaged during the traumatic incident.
    After emergency stroke treatment, there is still a long road of stroke care that lies ahead. Rehabilitation, including speech therapy, occupational therapy, and physical therapy will be needed to guide stroke survivors through the process of restoring cognitive function.

    At Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center in Thousand Oaks, we provide compassionate care through every step of the recovery process following stroke—from rapid and accurate emergency care to ongoing specialized rehabilitation. To contact us for a closer look at our stroke care and the awards earned by our Primary Stroke Care Center , visit our website or call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (805) 497-2727.

  • How to Recognize a Severe Allergic Reaction


    Many children and adults have allergies to a wide range of substances. Often, these allergies lead only to mildly irritating symptoms such as nasal congestion and watery eyes. All allergies are inflammatory reactions that take place when the body’s immune system recognizes an otherwise harmless substance as a threat to the body. While these reactions are often temporary and fairly mild, they can be a serious threat to an individual’s health, leading to a severe condition called anaphylaxis. Below is a look at the common signs of anaphylaxis, which should be treated at the ER .

    Difficulty Breathing
    A severe allergy to food, airborne pollen, insect stings, or household chemicals can cause the throat to close, thereby restricting respiration. This may result in symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, gasping for air, or inability to swallow. Swelling of the face, eyes, and tongue may also be seen when the throat has become swollen.

    Confusion and Dizziness
    Feeling dizzy or lightheaded is common with anaphylaxis —particularly when the airways have been restricted. Someone experiencing anaphylaxis may be unable to stand on her own or have trouble understanding simple commands. In some cases, loss of consciousness can occur during a severe allergic reaction.

    Abdominal Distress
    Food allergies often lead to abdominal discomfort and violent reactions such as vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, and sharp stomach pain. These symptoms should be treated with emergency care when they occur suddenly and are accompanied by other indicators of an allergic reaction.

    Whenever an allergic reaction is suspected, you should not wait for symptoms to worsen before seeking emergency care. At Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center, we understand that emergency situations require the most rapid and accurate care available, so we have worked to streamline our Emergency Department with wait times under 15 minutes on average. To stay connected with our ER when you need medical care the most, download our iTriage Symptom checker app or text ‘ER’ to 2300 for up-to-date wait times at our Thousand Oaks facilities. You can also contact us through our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (805) 497-2727.

  • “Skin Cancer Prevention: Make Sure That Spot on Your Skin Isn’t Cancerous!” on May 23rd!

    Skin cancer is the most common cancer—and one of the most deadly. How can you tell if you have it? Join Dr. Weintraub as he discusses the various types of skin cancers, how they’re diagnosed, and how they’re treated at “Skin Cancer Prevention: Make Sure That Spot on Your Skin Isn’t Cancerous!”  The event will be held on Thursday, May 23rd at the Oaks Shopping Center.  For more information, visit us at www.losrobleshospital.com !

    Skin Cancer Prevention May 23

  • Could the Mediterranean Diet Be the Answer to Your Heart Health Worries?

    Hearty Healthy Eating

    The Mediterranean Diet is one of the latest trends in healthy eating, and it has become so popular that the month of May has been dedicated as National Mediterranean Diet Month. One of the reasons that this diet has gained so much attention is for its effects on heart health , which are linked to the types of fat emphasized in the Mediterranean Diet program. This diet encourages the increased consumption of fish and lean poultry in addition to healthy oils, which are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Below is a closer look at the benefits of these fats and some other factors to consider when taking control of your heart health.

    Nourishing your heart with good fats
    Fish, nuts, and oils containing omega-3 fatty acids are known as good fats, because these foods will help to reduce inflammation, improve circulation, and lower bad LDL cholesterol. These effects can dramatically reduce heart disease risk when a balanced diet of whole grains, fresh vegetables, and low-fat dairy products is consumed in addition to protein and fat sources containing omega-3s.

    Supplementing your diet with other healthy habits
    While the Mediterranean Diet will be beneficial to heart health, it is not enough to manage your heart disease risk. You should also participate in regular aerobic exercise, avoid smoking, and work to eliminate sources of stress.

    Talking to your doctor
    Establishing communication with your doctor is also important for your cardiac health, and it is a necessary step before beginning any diet program. Only your physician will be able to review all risks and benefits of any diet and exercise program with the detailed knowledge of your health history and concerns.

    If you are in search of a cardiac physician to help you plan a healthier future for your heart, call Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center through our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (805) 497-2727. You can also visit our website for a look at upcoming classes and events that will help you manage your health at any age.

  • The CPR Challenge: Be Prepared to Help Save a Life on Wednesday, May 22nd!

    Hands-Only CPR on Wednesday, May 22, 2013

    Los Robles Hospital and AMR, the ambulance company, are sponsoring a CPR Challenge to teach Hands-Only CPR on Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at the Oaks Mall from 2:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the JC Penney Court.

    It only takes 2 minutes to learn the correct way to give CPR with chest compressions only. No mouth-to-mouth is administered. By learning how to push hard and in a quick rhythm you can save someone’s life.

    In 2010, the American Heart Association’s new guidelines encouraged Hands-Only CPR.  Debbie Licht, Los Robles Hospital Emergency Room Pre-Care Coordinator, said the chest compression-only CPR when administered by bystanders outside of a hospital setting has increased the number of lives saved.

    Chad Panke, AMR clinical manager, said 30 percent of cardiac arrest victims get bystander CPR before arriving to the hospital. “We want that number to pass 50 percent, and eventually hit 100 percent,” he said

    For further information, call Licht at 805-370-4437.

  • What Women Need to Know About Arthritis Prevention and Bone Health

    Breaking bone

    Bone and joint health is an area that both men and women should be concerned about during the aging process. Post-menopausal women, however, need to be particularly aware of age-related bone and joint degeneration, because they have the highest risk for injuries and conditions associated with bone loss. Here is a look at some of the key facts about bone and joint health that women should be aware of.

    Healthy habits can prevent bone loss
    While you cannot control some risk factors for bone loss, such as your age, genetics, and gender, you can make some significant changes that will keep your bones healthy. For example, aerobic and muscle-strengthening exercises can sustain bone health by improving circulation to ensure that your bones are provided with the nutrients they need to maintain proper mass. Consuming calcium-rich foods such as milk, leafy greens, and soybeans will also help nourish your bones so that they do not become weak and fragile.

    Bone loss can worsen arthritis pain
    When you have arthritis and you begin to experience bone loss, the pressure and inflammation in your joints may become progressively worse. Bone density loss also reduces stability within the joints, making injuries much more likely to happen.

    Smoking can reduce bone mass
    There are a number of reasons to quit smoking—especially as you get older. Smoking tobacco puts you at a much higher risk of osteoporosis, and it can impede the healing process if a bone fracture or joint injury does occur as the result of bone loss.

    At Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center in Thousand Oaks, we can help you stay in charge of your musculoskeletal health through our Total Joint Program. Our dedicated team of joint specialists is focused on patient-centered care, and they will help you determine the best treatment plan for your needs. To schedule services through our Total Joint Program or explore upcoming healthy living classes at our facilities, call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (805) 497-2727.