Taking multiple medications
Many people take multiple medications. This presents the possibility of drug-drug interactions, which occurs when one drug interacts with another.

Adding to the problem is the fact that many patients are prescribed drugs by different physicians. As an example, your cardiologist might prescribe a blood thinner and an Emergency Room doctor might recommend aspirin. These two drugs can interact with each other and potentially cause excessive bleeding.

Whenever you’re prescribed a new drug, ask the prescribing provider to make sure it won’t interact with your current medications. You can also ask the pharmacist to double-check for potential interactions when you pick up your medications.

Keeping track of your medications
It’s easier to inform your providers of the medications you’re taking when you have them all written down. If you need to go to the Emergency Room, the stress of the situation might cause you to forget about a medication you’ve taken recently.

Write a list of all of your prescribed medications, over-the-counter drugs and supplements. Make a note of the dosage strength and how many doses you take each day. Update the list whenever your routine changes.

Watching out for potential side effects
The pharmacy can provide you with information about side effects to watch out for. Read this information carefully each time you start taking a new medication.

Call your doctor if you do experience any bothersome side effects. He or she may adjust your dosage or prescribe a different drug.

Los Robles Regional Medical Center invests in the latest medical technology to give our patients the best possible outcome. But beyond our high-tech approach, we’re also committed to providing compassionate care delivered by providers who are genuinely concerned for your health and safety. For general healthcare questions, contact a registered nurse in Thousand Oaks at (877) 888-5746.

  • Choosing where to get treatment for breast cancer


    Learning that you have breast cancer is a life-changing event. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed, especially during the early days while you try to sort through your treatment options. But with the right cancer team to support you, you can get through this. Los Robles Regional Medical Center invites you to explore the resources available at our Breast Center in Thousand Oaks.

    Multidisciplinary team of breast cancer specialists
    Cancer is a fundamentally complex disease that can affect your life in so many ways. It’s best treated by a multidisciplinary team of experts, all working together to give you the best possible outcome.

    When you watch the accompanying video, you’ll meet Cathy Cole, the Nurse Navigator at Los Robles Regional Medical Center’s Breast Center. She explains some of the benefits of choosing treatment at a comprehensive breast program, such as the presence of the multidisciplinary team of experts.

    Nurse Navigator available for patients
    One of the hallmarks of a breast program committed to healthcare excellence is the presence of the Nurse Navigator on the breast care team. Nurse Navigators are an invaluable source of information, guidance, comfort and support for patients and their families during this difficult time. Some of the responsibilities of the Nurse Navigator include:

    • To explain the abnormal mammogram results
    • To educate patients about their treatment options
    • To explain complex medical concepts and terms
    • To help patients coordinate their care
    • To connect patients with support resources

     

    Nurse Navigators also offer an understanding ear and a shoulder to lean on. Consider choosing a cancer program that includes a Nurse Navigator on the team.

    Breast cancer patient support services
    Breast cancer treatment is an emotional journey as well as a medical one. Look for a cancer program that offers exceptional patient support services, such as a lymphedema support group. You could also look for a hospital that participates in the Cancer Support Community and American Cancer Society’s Look Good… Feel Better Program.

    If you have any questions or concerns during your breast cancer treatment, help is just a phone call away. You can contact a registered nurse at Los Robles Regional Medical Center at (877) 888-5746 any time of the day or night. Our advanced hospital in Thousand Oaks is committed to upholding the highest standards of patient care and safety.

  • What everyone should know about sudden cardiac arrest

    Sudden cardiac arrest is a very serious condition in which the heart abruptly stops beating. It’s caused by a malfunction within the heart’s electrical system, which is responsible for regulating the rate and rhythm of the heartbeat. Patients who experience cardiac arrest need immediate medical attention, even before they reach the Emergency Room at Los Robles Regional Medical Center. Unless patients receive immediate intervention, death typically occurs within minutes.

    Recognizing the signs of cardiac arrest
    Cardiac arrest can’t always be detected before it will occur. However, some patients do experience some symptoms in the hours or weeks leading up to the episode. These symptoms can include:

    • Chest pain
    • Weakness
    • Faintness
    • Pounding sensation in the chest

    When a person suffers cardiac arrest, he or she will collapse, stop breathing and lose consciousness. The patient will lack a heartbeat or pulse.

    As soon as the heart stops beating, the tissues throughout the body no longer receive the oxygenated blood they need to sustain life. Permanent brain damage can occur when the brain is deprived of oxygen, even if the patient survives.

    Responding to cardiac arrest
    Patients who suffer cardiac arrest are typically unable to help themselves, as they lose consciousness. It’s important to know what to do in the event you happen to witness a cardiac arrest.

    • Check for a pulse, heartbeat or breathing when someone collapses
    • Call 911 immediately or direct someone else to call
    • Begin CPR, delivering rescue breaths after every 30 compressions

    If you haven’t been trained in CPR, you can just do chest compressions. Push hard and quickly—about 100 to 120 compressions per minute. Note that the chest should rise completely between compressions.

    Continue performing CPR until emergency personnel arrive. A defibrillator can be used to restore the heartbeat.

    Reducing your risk of cardiac arrest
    If you have any heart conditions, you could be at a higher risk of cardiac arrest. Consider talking to your doctor about managing your risk. Your doctor may prescribe medications if you have any of the following:

    • High blood pressure
    • High cholesterol
    • Heart disease
    • Diabetes

    CardioVascular Institute at Los Robles Regional Medical Center brings together cutting-edge medical technology with highly trained heart care specialists. The entire team at our hospital in Thousand Oaks is committed to providing you the patient-centered, superior care you deserve. Call a registered nurse at (877) 888-5746 for a physician referral, or for emergency care, call 911.

  • Are breast self-exams necessary?

    You may already know about the importance of screening mammograms for the early detection of breast cancer. But there’s another important step you can take to protect your health, and it doesn’t require an appointment. A breast self-exam is your own examination of your breasts to check for potential abnormalities. However, the recommendation in favor of monthly breast self-exams is debatable. If you aren’t sure whether it’s a good idea for you, a doctor at Los Robles Regional Medical Center can offer personalized medical guidance.

    Potential value of breast self-exams
    It’s thought that breast self-exams may support the earlier detection of abnormalities like lumps. Some breast cancers are found through detection by the patients themselves, rather than screening tests conducted at the hospital. That’s why some doctors still recommend breast self-exams when done in combination with screening mammograms.

    Possible downsides of breast self-exams
    There is evidence to suggest that breast self-exams don’t actually increase early detection rates or reduce breast cancer mortality rates. And in some cases, it’s possible for them to do more harm than good when patients undergo unnecessary biopsies.

    Instead, some health providers recommend breast self-awareness. This refers to having a good understanding of how your breasts generally look and feel in order to detect unusual changes.

    Best practices in breast self-exams
    If you are thinking of doing a breast self-exam, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor about it. He or she can show you the proper method for performing a self-exam.

    Know that it’s natural for the breasts to change over time. Before and during your menstrual period, your breasts may naturally feel lumpy, swollen, tender and painful. They may also feel lumpy during pregnancy.

    If you decide to do a breast self-exam every month, you can write down your findings. Make a note of where your breasts feel lumpier, for example. This can help you keep track of changes.

    Breast Center at Los Robles Regional Medical Center is focused on saving lives through preventive medicine, early detection, advanced treatment and healthy survivorship. Our state-of-the-art hospital in Thousand Oaks puts our patients first because healthy patients mean stronger communities. Call a registered nurse at (877) 888-5746 for general information about our breast care services.