Regional Medical Center of San Jose
Regional Medical Center of San Jose offers world-class healthcare to residents throughout the greater San Jose community.
408.259.5000

Recognizing the signs of skin cancer

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer for both men and women in the US. Fortunately, it is also treatable in the vast majority of cases, as long as it is diagnosed early. By being vigilant about recognizing the signs of skin cancer and reporting them to your physician when you see them, you can increase the chances of getting an early diagnosis and treatment if the disease happens to you. If you notice any of these signs of skin cancer, consider making an appointment with your physician.

A mole that suddenly looks different

Changes in moles can indicate skin cancer. If you have one or more moles, keep an eye out for these potential skin cancer symptoms:

  • Change in color
  • Change in shape or border
  • Change in size

Although these changes are the most common that occur with moles, you should have any changes in a mole evaluated by a physician. He or she may decide to take a biopsy of the mole to see if any cancerous or precancerous cells are present.

A red or pale patch of skin

Skin cancer can cause red or pale patches of skin that can be scaly and rough or flat and smooth. In some cases, these patches may have raised edges, black spots or pearl-like bumps. Frequently, these patches look like scars.

In some cases, these patches are pale and raised, which gives them a wart-like appearance.

A sore that won’t heal

Skin cancer can also appear as an open sore that won’t heal. The sore may go away and come back, or it may just remain open. In some cases, the sore may also ooze pus or have a crusty surface.

In some cases, these open wounds are confused with shaving cuts, so be mindful of perceived cuts that don’t heal. These could indicate skin cancer.

Regional Medical Center of San Jose is pleased to offer a renowned cancer care program in San Jose. Our experienced team of multidisciplinary specialists provides comprehensive care for patients and their families using the latest technological advances. For more information, please call (888) 762-8881.


Know when your health can't wait

One question people often struggle with when faced with an illness or injury is whether to seek emergency care or to call their primary care physicians. As a general guideline, any time you are concerned that your symptoms could indicate a serious issue, go to the ER. It is preferable to seek emergency care for a problem that ends up being less urgent than to delay care in an emergency situation. If you experience any of these potentially serious problems, go to the ER for diagnosis and treatment.

Chest pain

Although chest pain does not always mean you are having a heart attack, it should always be evaluated in the ER. If you are having a heart attack, every second counts. The sooner you receive treatment, the more heart tissue the physicians will be able to save.

Chest pain is especially worrying when it is accompanied by dizziness, shortness of breath and pain in the left arm, upper back and neck.

Sudden speech problems

When someone begins slurring his or her words suddenly, a stroke could be to blame. Like heart attacks, fast treatment is essential during a stroke, so never avoid immediate care whenever this symptom appears.

Strokes can also cause drooping on one side of the body, vision problems and a sudden headache. Never risk waiting out these symptoms.

Severe bleeding

After an injury, severe bleeding can quickly lead to a medical emergency when it is not stopped. Getting emergency care can stop the bleeding before it leads to further complications.

Injuries that cause serious bleeding could also cause internal bleeding that you can’t see but that can be just as dangerous. Any time you experience a traumatic injury, get emergency care to ensure proper healing.

At Regional Medical Center of San Jose, we provide emergency care in San Jose as well as a trauma center that are each staffed with specialists around the clock. Get answers to your questions about all of our hospital services by calling (888) 762-8881.


How to start running without injuries

Are you ready to kick off a running regime? Running is an excellent aerobic exercise that can improve your heart health and help you to manage your weight, but the wrong form can also lead to injuries that put the brakes on your workout plan. Prevent joint and muscle injuries and visits to the hospital for emergency care by using these strategies to reduce the risk of running injuries.

Stretch before and after

The first and last part of every run should be stretching. When you stretch, you warm up your muscles and help them to cool down, so that they’re ready for the demands of running and for the necessary recovery afterward.

Spend about five minutes stretching on both sides of your running. Focus on your leg muscles, but don’t forget to stretch out the rest of your body as well. You’ll have a lower risk of suffering an injury and feel less sore in the morning.

Start slowly

When you’re new to running, don’t expect to run a marathon overnight. Start with short runs and build up your distances slowly to avoid injuries. When you’re new to running, it can be helpful to combine walking and running into a single workout until you’ve built up the stamina to run the entire distance.

There are numerous programs for new runners available online. You can also consult with a personal trainer or join a beginner’s running club in your area for tips on getting started safely.

Invest in the right shoes

Don’t skimp when it comes to your running shoes. Your shoes should support your arches and fit snuggly without being too tight. Don’t run in shoes with worn or uneven soles. The wrong shoes can lead to ankle and foot injuries quickly.

It can be helpful to visit a sports goods store and have your shoes fitted by a professional, who can assess your gait and foot arch to recommend the right shoes for you. If you have a history of foot or ankle problems, custom orthotics can help.

The orthopedics and joint replacement teams at Regional Medical Center of San Jose can help get everyone from seasoned athletes to weekend warriors out of pain and back in the game quickly. If you’re experiencing joint or muscle pain, call us at (888) 762-8881 for a physician referral.


What are the warning signs of mental illnesses?

Mental health disorders affect countless Americans, yet many don’t seek the help they need. In some cases, this may be because patients are unaware that their problems are indeed signs of mental health problems that are medically treatable. This May, the theme for Mental Health Month focuses on increasing awareness of the signs and symptoms of mental health problems. Take a few minutes to become better informed about mental health. If you need help, you can rely on the compassionate, patient-centered care available at Regional Medical Center of San Jose. Our mission is to help you enjoy better quality of life.

Emotional shifts in mental illness

The warning signs of mental illness can vary widely, depending on the specific diagnosis. Generally, the symptoms associated with mental health problems are persistent or severe enough to interfere in daily life. They include the following changes in mood:

  • Apathy
  • Unusual sadness, hopelessness or worthlessness
  • Nervousness
  • Unusual irritability, hostility or anger
  • Excessive worrying
  • Restlessness
  • Fear

Thought patterns of mental illness

Sometimes, mental illnesses can cause changes in a person’s thought patterns or cognition. Some signs include the following:

  • Sensation of being disconnected from one’s surroundings
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Unjustifiable suspicions of others
  • Memory impairment
  • Impairment of logical thought or reasoning
  • Exaggerated beliefs about one’s own abilities or importance
  • Hallucinations

Physical changes of mental illness

Mental health disorders often manifest in physical symptoms, such as vague aches and pains that can’t be attributed to an injury. Patients might also experience the following:

  • Changes in sleeping patterns
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Decline in personal hygiene
  • Elevated sensitivity to sounds, sights, smells or touch
  • Excessive fatigue
  • Headaches

Social changes of mental illness

Some people with mental health disorders appear to be socially well-adjusted, while others may impose social isolation on themselves. Some patients might:

  • Avoid friends
  • Avoid usual social activities
  • Have trouble relating to others
  • Experience the deterioration of relationships

Functional impairments of mental illness

Although many people with mental health disorders can still meet their daily obligations, it’s not unusual to experience some functional impairment. A person might have a decline in the quality and quantity of work at a job or school. In extreme cases, a patient might drop out of school, or get fired from or quit a job.

For superior healthcare delivered within a supportive, positive environment, you can count on Regional Medical Center of San Jose. Our healthcare providers continually strive for healthcare excellence across all our departments—from our emergency care to our heart health services. Call a registered nurse in San Jose at (888) 762-8881.


Why is swimming such a healthy workout?

The benefits of physical fitness extend well beyond heart health and stroke prevention. Being physically fit supports emotional and mental health by helping people manage stress, boost self-confidence and improve quality of life. If you’re looking for a fun and invigorating addition to your workout regimen, swimming certainly fits the bill. If you have an underlying medical condition, such as a heart problem, consider checking in with a physician at Regional Medical Center of San Jose before starting a new workout program.

Swimming builds cardiovascular fitness

Although splashing around in a pool or at the beach is considered a leisurely activity, it’s great exercise for your heart. The resistance of the water forces you to work harder to travel the length of the pool, compared to simply walking the same distance. Swimming laps is one way to get an invigorating cardiovascular workout, but you can also try water aerobics or even water running.

Swimming supports muscle strength

Swimming allows you to exercise major muscle groups throughout your body. Swimming freestyle and backstroke, for instance, works the deltoids, biceps and triceps. The effort of keeping the torso in a stabilized position works the abdominals and chest pectorals.

The butterfly is particularly rigorous. It burns plenty of calories engaging the muscles of the hips, abdomen, back, shoulders, arms and legs.

Swimming is gentle on the joints

Swimming is the exercise of choice for many people who have joint problems, such as arthritis. Although swimming builds both cardiovascular endurance and muscle strength, it’s a non-impact exercise.

In other words, your movement in the water isn’t exerting stress on the joints. This makes swimming an ideal workout for many patients with chronic health problems and those who are rehabilitating a physical injury.

Swimming workouts are fun and customizable

Living an active lifestyle is easier if you’re doing something you enjoy. You can customize your swimming workouts in many ways. Try the following water workouts:

  • Water yoga
  • Water tai chi
  • Water strength training
  • Water polo
  • Water volleyball

Some water sports enthusiasts even do water line dancing. If you can’t find water sports clubs or classes near you, consider organizing your own with your friends.

Regional Medical Center of San Jose maintains an enduring commitment to superior, patient-centered care. Our stroke care, heart health specialists, robotic surgeons and breast care specialists genuinely want to help you and your family live life well. You can request a physician referral in San Jose by calling (888) 762-8881.


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