• Separating myths from facts on sexual health

    It may not always be comfortable to talk about sex, but having an open, honest discussion with your partner—and discussing your sexual health with your physician —is the best way to cultivate an honest, fulfilling intimate relationship while protecting your health. Unfortunately, there are many myths and misconceptions when it comes to sexual health, even among educated adults. These mistruths can be harmful to your health, so continue reading for a look at some of the most common.

    Myth: It’s obvious when someone has an STI
    Though sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can be serious health conditions, their symptoms aren’t always obvious . The only way to know for sure if you or someone else has an STI is to get tested. If someone says that they know they do not have any STIs or STDs, ask when the last time they got tested was. Some infections can take months to show up on screening tests, and others may have a delayed onset of any noticeable symptoms.

    It’s also important to recognize that using a condom is not a fool-proof way of preventing the spread of STIs and STDs. Some infections are spread by skin to skin contact in the genital area, and some are spread when condoms are not used correctly—in combination with an oil-based lubricant, for example.

    Myth: You can’t get pregnant while you’re on your period
    Pregnancy can occur during any time in a woman’s menstrual cycle. Though it is most likely to occur when she’s ovulating, a woman can get pregnant at any time, even when she’s on her period.

    Myth: Senior citizens don’t get STDs
    It’s not just young people who must worry about sexual health and safety. Senior citizens can also contract STDs, and they in fact have a higher risk in some cases, because many older adults do not realize they need to get tested.

    When you need to get the answers to essential questions about your health or schedule the preventive exams and screenings that will keep you safe, call (888) 762-8881 to reach Regional Medical Center of San Jose. One of our registered nurses will be available to take your call 24/7, so don’t hesitate to reach out when you need us most. In the event of an emergency, however, call 911 or head to our San Jose emergency room right away.

  • Types of heart rhythm problems and their treatment

    Your heart is an involuntary muscle, which means it is always contracting and relaxing without you thinking about it. The rhythm of your heart is caused by electrical activity, and should be steady and even despite your heart’s pace changing from activity or inactivity. As this video explains, there are many different types of heart rhythm problems, or arrhythmias , that may throw off your heart’s natural rhythm and present more significant health problems later, such as stroke or heart failure.

    Dr. Chow explains in the video that there are many different arrhythmias that exist and the important of narrowing down a patient’s diagnosis to select the right course of treatment and resolve symptoms—as well as mitigate future health risks. Here you can learn about some of the more common arrhythmias and get an idea of what treatments are used to correct them at Regional Medical Center of San Jose.

    Atrial fibrillation (aFib)
    Perhaps the most common type of arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation is an irregular heartbeat that originates in the atria, or upper chambers of the heart .

    Atrial flutter
    Atrial flutter also originates in the atria, but it has a much different pattern. Where the heartbeat is highly irregular with aFib, it is steadier with atrial flutter, though there is a faster rate and the occasional added or skipped beat.

    Paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia (PSVT)
    PSVT is another type of arrhythmia in which the heart beats too fast, but this condition originates in the ventricles, or lower chambers of the heart.

    Treatment options
    There are certain conditions that can cause arrhythmias, so it’s important to work with your cardiologist for an accurate and thorough diagnosis. Once any underlying conditions are managed, your doctor may recommend drug therapy with prescription drugs to regulate the heartbeat. Should this conservative approach fail, you might consider electrical cardioversion—a treatment in which an electrical shock is sent to the heart to restart its normal rhythm—a pacemaker, or another type of implantable device designed to regulate the heartbeat through electrical stimulation.

    For exceptional cardiovascular care in your neighborhood, connect with Regional Medical Center of San Jose. Our accredited Chest Pain Center and cardiovascular surgery services are regionally recognized, and we remain invested in the most advanced treatment options to ensure your heart health. To learn more about us or request a physician referral, call (888) 762-8881.

  • Is it safe to drive yourself to the ER?

    One of the most important steps in dealing with a medical emergency is recognizing that an emergency is taking place. In some cases, it’s clear when to call 911, such as after a serious car accident or when someone is showing the symptoms of a stroke . Other times, you may recognize that you or someone else needs to see a doctor right away, but you might think that it’s better to drive to the hospital rather than wait for an ambulance.

    In general, it is better to go on the side of caution and call 911 even if you think it is safe to drive to the ER. As Dr. Justin Wang from Regional Medical Center explains in this video, you may not drive as carefully as you should, because you are trying to get to the hospital quickly or are driving recklessly due to the urgency of the situation. In addition, your symptoms may worsen when you are on the way to the hospital, putting you at risk for an accident.

    When you should call 911
    If someone is facing a life-threatening emergency, such as a heart attack or traumatic injury, you should absolutely call 911. When an ambulance arrives on the scene, lifesaving interventions can begin to take place immediately. In addition, EMS services can connect with local hospitals to help their emergency rooms prepare for a patient’s arrival and see to it that a doctor or surgeon is ready to tend to the individual upon arrival.

    Why it may be better to call an ambulance
    Along with life-saving interventions that can be offered by EMTs in the ambulance, you can access more appropriate care by calling 911. Dr. Wang provides the example of a stroke patient being taken to a regional stroke center that may be just a little further away than the closest hospital.

    When you need emergency care , never hesitate to call 911 to be taken to Regional Medical Center of San Jose. For non-emergent medical inquiries, stay in touch with us by calling (888) 762-8881.