• Exploring the Unique Nutritional Needs of Cancer Patients

    When you’re undergoing cancer treatment, meeting your nutritional needs will help you feel better and keep your side effects in check so you have the strength to fight your disease. The nutrition you need changes when you undergo cancer treatment. When you’re at the hospital receiving care, ask for advice about what foods are good for you. Here are some of the things you should keep in mind about nutrition while you’re fighting cancer.

    Food Safety Matters

    If you’re receiving chemotherapy for cancer, your immune system may be compromised by your treatment. It is more important than ever to pay attention to food safety to avoid germs. Be sure to wash your hands before eating or cooking and wash all fruits and veggies before eating. Avoid cross-contamination by keeping raw meats away from cooked foods and make sure foods are cooked thoroughly before eating. Choose pasteurized milk and juice and avoid raw honey. While dining out, skip salad bars and sushi.

    Your Appetite May Change

    Surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy can all affect your appetite. If you’re suffering from nausea and vomiting, getting the right nutrition can be challenging. However, it’s important to still eat as well as you can to support your recovery. Try eating smaller meals or snacks when you’re not feeling well, and avoid fried, greasy foods that are hard to digest. On days that you feel better, make an effort to eat a normal diet. If the side effects of treatment are consistently making it difficult to eat, consult your doctor for advice.

    Fat and Alcohol Consumption May Be Risky

    There are studies that indicate that saturated fat and alcohol could be linked to the development of certain kinds of cancer. Consuming them may also impact the risk of cancer coming back in the future. Talk to your doctor about your particular case and whether these items are safe for you during cancer care.

    At Regional Medical Center of San Jose, our oncology teams are dedicated to supporting you during and after your cancer care. You can learn more about our San Jose hospital’s cancer care program and request a referral to a specialist by calling our hospital at (408) 259-4000.

  • Tips for Preventing Foodborne Illnesses in the Summertime

    Foodborne illnesses are more common in the summer, thanks to warm temperatures and lots of al fresco dining. That doesn’t mean you have to cancel your cookout or expect a trip to hospital for urgent care after a barbeque. Instead, take the proper precautions to prevent foodborne illnesses and enjoy the season with these tips.

    Wash Your Hands

    Washing your hands is a good way to avoid foodborne illnesses all year long. While you’re preparing food, wash your hands before you begin and after handling raw meat. You should also wash up before you eat to avoid transferring any germs on your hand to your food. Use soap and warm water, or, if you’re away from home, carry moist towelettes to clean your hands off on the go.

    Avoid Cross-Contamination

    Don’t let dangerous bacteria on raw meat contaminate the uncooked food on your menu. Never reuse utensils or cutting boards that handled raw meat unless you wash them thoroughly. When grilling, be careful not to use the plate that carried raw meat to serve the cooked food. For marinated food, discard the marinade rather than using it as a sauce.

    Practice Cooler Smarts

    For chilled food you plan to serve outdoors, a cooler is a must. To keep items in the cooler as cold as possible, fill any empty space with ice or ice packs. Store the cooler out of the sun as much as possible and replenish the ice as it melts. When cold food is removed the cooler, don’t allow it to sit out for longer than an hour. Food that sits out for longer may become contaminated, so either return the food to ice or throw it out.

    Foodborne illness can turn into a medical emergency, so when you need urgent care, choose the Regional Medical Center of San Jose . Our full-service San Jose hospital provides comprehensive healthcare services, including stroke care, breast care, and robotic surgery. Get a referral to one of our physicians or more information by calling (408) 259-4000.

  • A Closer Look at the Different Types of Lung Cancer

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    Getting a lung cancer diagnosis can be surprising, but understanding your condition can help you feel more in control and make decisions about your care. At Regional Medical Center of San Jose, our Pulmonology-Interventional department provides diagnosis and treatment for all types of lung cancer, and our expert staff of oncologists is always willing to answer patients’ questions. There are three types of lung cancer. Here is what you need to know about each.

    Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

    Non-small cell lung cancer accounts for about 85 percent of lung cancer cases. Subtypes of non-small cell lung cancer include adenocarcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. Signs of this type of lung cancer include a persistent cough, chest pain when coughing or laughing, coughing up blood, and unexplained weight loss. If the cancer spreads, patients may also experience bone pain or neurological changes. Treatment options include surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy.

    Small Cell Lung Cancer

    Sometimes referred to as oat cell cancer, small cell cancer makes up 10 to 15 percent of cases. The symptoms of small cell cancer are similar to those of non-small cell cancer, however, small cell cancer usually spreads very quickly and has often infected distant organs when it is diagnosed. Chemotherapy is the most common treatment for this kind of cancer. Radiation therapy may also be used, but surgery for small cell lung cancer is rare.

    Lung Carcinoid Tumors

    Lung carcinoid tumors are the most rare type of lung cancer, accounting for only five percent of cases. Your doctor may also refer to this type of cancer as lung neoendocrine tumors. This type of lung cancer grows slowly and usually doesn’t spread to other parts of the body. Symptoms include coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath. Surgery and chemotherapy are common treatments.

    Lung cancer patients can find compassionate care and cutting-edge treatments at Regional Medical Center of San Jose. In addition to quality cancer care, our hospital in San Jose is home to urgent care, stroke care , and robotic surgery. Learn more about our services by calling (408) 259-4000. 

  • How the Summer Heat Can Impact Your Heart Health

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    Summer can bring special concerns for patients living with heart disease. Heat can be hard on your heart, and you may need to make some changes to the way you exercise and otherwise enjoy the great outdoors. Talk to your doctor at the heart hospital about any special precautions you should take. Here are some of the ways that the heat of summer can take a toll on your heart. 

    Increased Sensitivity to Heat

    Medications can impact the way you react to heat. For patients with heart disease, medications like calcium channel blockers, ace inhibitors, and beta blockers can increase your sensitivity to heat and make you more prone to heat-related illnesses. Talk to your heart doctor about your medications and find out if any of them could make you more sensitive to the heat, so you can be vigilant about symptoms and adjust your activities accordingly.

    Increased Heart Pumping

    Your heart plays a central role in your body’s temperature regulation system. When you’re hot, your body radiates heat to the air to cool you down by rerouting blood flow to your skin. To reroute this blood, your heart has to pump harder, and the hotter you are, the harder your heart pumps. In fact, your heart may pump up to four times more blood each minute than it does when temperatures are cool. If you have had a heart attack, the damage left behind may leave your heart unable to pump enough to effectively cool your body, so ask your doctor if it is safe to exercise outside. 

    Increased Mineral Loss

    The sweat that helps your body cool down also represents a loss of minerals that your cardiovascular system needs to function properly. Sweat contains potassium and sodium, which your muscles need to contract. Because your medications may also cause mineral loss, your heart doctor may want you to curb your outside activity.

    The physicians at the heart hospital of Regional Medical Center of San Jose can help stay heart healthy in the summer months and all year long. If you’re suffering from a cardiovascular problem , request a referral to one of the physicians at our San Jose heart hospital by calling (408) 259-4000. 

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