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    Health Concerns in the Hispanic Community: Obesity

    Last updated 1 month ago

    Obesity is a major concern in the U.S. As the rates of obesity among U.S. adults and children continue to rise, so too does the risk of increased rates of heart disease, diabetes, sleep apnea, osteoarthritis, certain cancers, and a slew of other health problems. Obesity is of particular concern for the Hispanic community, given that research has revealed disproportionately higher rates of obesity among this demographic. At Riverside Community Hospital, our bariatric weight loss team helps individuals who are struggling with obesity.

    Obesity Statistics

    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health (OMH) has published an alarming report regarding the rate of obesity among the Hispanic community. According to the OMH, 78 percent of Mexican American women are overweight or obese. This is significantly higher than the percentage of non-Hispanic White women who are overweight or obese, which is calculated at 60.3. Furthermore, the data demonstrate that Hispanic Americans are less likely to engage in physical activity.

    Healthy Recipes

    Dietary modifications are essential for losing weight and maintaining weight loss. Individuals who are struggling with dietary choices can find the guidance they need at a nearby hospital. Dieticians can provide advice on enjoying healthy Hispanic recipes that feature plenty of fresh vegetables and lean proteins. For example, empanadas can be made with lean ground turkey instead of ground beef. Other healthy meal ideas include sautéed polenta with spinach and beans, and tamales stuffed with black beans, squash, and goat cheese. Being aware of food choices between meals is also important. Instead of reaching for a sugary, salty, or fatty snack, dieticians might recommend eating a hard-boiled egg or a piece of fruit. Similarly, swapping out sodas and other sugary beverages in favor of water or tea can reduce daily caloric intake.

    Riverside Community Hospital is dedicated to promoting the well-being of all of our neighbors throughout the Riverside area. At our community hospital, new and current patients can explore our preventive healthcare services or meet with a specialist at the Center for Surgical Weight Loss to determine if bariatric weight loss surgery could be appropriate for them. Call our Consult-A-Nurse referral line at (951) 788-3000 to inquire about our other service lines, including robotic surgery, organ transplant, and heart care.

    Stroke Awareness and Treatment [INFOGRAPHIC]

    Last updated 2 months ago

    When a stroke occurs, fast action is crucial. The sooner a stroke victim gets emergency care, the more brain tissue can be saved, which means fewer post-stroke complications. If someone you know experiences the telltale sign of a stroke, such as slurred speech, confusion, and weakness on one side of the body, get him or her emergency care right away. Once the symptoms are stabilized, the attention turns to recovery. Initially, patients get in-hospital rehabilitation care, including physical therapy and occupational therapy, to address the impacts of the stroke. After discharge, most stroke patients continue to need outpatient rehab and may also require in-home caregiving support. Find out more about what to do during and after a stroke in this infographic from Riverside Community Hospital. Our Riverside hospital provides emergency care to stroke sufferers, as well as heart care, minimally invasive surgery, and much more

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    Staying Safe in the Heat of Summer

    Last updated 2 months ago

    Heat-related illnesses are not uncommon during the summer months in California. A heat-related illness can occur when a person’s temperature rises too rapidly or when the body loses too much salt and fluids. If left unmanaged, heat exhaustion may lead to heat stroke, which is a life-threatening condition. While preventing heat-related illnesses is always preferable, you can find the help you need at a community hospital if you do develop signs of heat stroke.

    Working or Playing Outdoors Safely

    It’s advisable to avoid remaining in high temperatures for long periods of time. If you do need to be outdoors, drinking plenty of sports drinks and other fluids can help prevent heat-related illnesses. Additionally, try to take frequent breaks in an air conditioned area to cool off. Wearing lightweight and lightly colored clothing can also help.

    Preventing Hyperthermia in Parked Cars

    Many people underestimate how quickly a parked car can heat up, even in mild temperatures. Children, the elderly, and pets are all at a heightened risk of hyperthermia, or elevated body temperature. Leaving the car windows slightly open does not offer enough protection from hyperthermia. Instead, avoid leaving anyone in a parked car for any length of time.

    Staying Safe during a Heat Wave

    During a heat wave, it’s particularly important to be proactive about preventing heat-related illnesses. Experts often advise individuals to delay strenuous activities until cooler temperatures are reached, such as during the evenings or early mornings. Stay within the coolest area available to you. If your home lacks air conditioning, head to a nearby public library, mall, or other air conditioned location. Drinking plenty of fluids is also advisable, although alcoholic beverages should be avoided.

    The Emergency Department at Riverside Community Hospital provides 24/7 care for those who are suffering from heat stroke or other medical emergencies. At our hospital, members of the Riverside community will also find a range of healthcare specialties, such as bariatric weight loss, organ transplant, robotic surgery, and heart health services. If you would like to speak with a registered nurse in Riverside, call (951) 788-3000.

    How Managing Your Blood Pressure Can Keep You Out of the ER

    Last updated 2 months ago

    High blood pressure is defined as having systolic pressure higher than 140 mmHg or diastolic pressure higher than 90 mmHg. High blood pressure affects your body in a number of ways. It exerts additional stress on your blood vessels, heart, lungs, kidneys, and brain. If not properly managed, high blood pressure may send you to the ER because of an increased risk in complications such as stroke and heart attack. If you have conditions that affect your cardiovascular health, you might consider working with a physician at a heart hospital to improve your wellness.


    By managing your blood pressure levels, you may reduce your risk of atherosclerosis, or the accumulation of plaque on the arterial walls. Having high blood pressure inflicts damage on your blood vessels, making them more likely to become clogged with plaque or develop blood clots. When the blood vessels in the brain are damaged, they are at a higher risk of rupturing or leaking, causing stroke. A stroke can also occur if a blood clot obstructs blood flow to the brain.

    Heart Attack

    Stroke isn’t the only medical emergency that may send you to the ER as a result of unmanaged high blood pressure. If you develop atherosclerosis as a result of hypertension, you may be at an increased risk of suffering a heart attack. High blood pressure can also lead to arteriosclerosis, or the thickening and stiffening of the arteries. These changes to your blood vessels can result in reduced blood flow to the heart.

    Heart Failure

    Specialists at heart hospitals often work with patients who suffer from heart failure, which occurs when the heart muscle becomes weak and can no longer meet the body’s demands for oxygenated blood. Unmanaged high blood pressure can eventually contribute to heart failure because it places additional strain on the heart.

    Members of the Riverside community and beyond can learn how to manage their heart health with help from the team at the HeartCare Institute at Riverside Community Hospital. Our heart hospital offers specialized care, including rapid response to cardiac emergencies and cardiac rehabilitation services. Call our Consult-A-Nurse referral line at (951) 788-3000 to inquire about our heart hospital or our other healthcare services, including robotic surgery, organ transplant, and bariatric weight loss.

    A Closer Look at the Sleeve Gastrectomy Procedure

    Last updated 2 months ago

    There are several options to consider for bariatric weight loss, including vertical sleeve gastrectomy. During this procedure, a bariatric surgeon modifies the stomach so that it can hold a smaller amount of food. This helps patients lose weight because they feel full more quickly and can reduce their calorie intake. Bariatric weight loss is a life-changing event that requires many lifestyle adjustments. If you’re wondering if bariatric weight loss might be right for you, read through the following information and consider attending a surgical weight loss seminar at Riverside Community Hospital.

    Preparing for Bariatric Weight Loss

    Prior to having sleeve gastrectomy, you can expect to consult a specialist to determine if this procedure is right for you. You may undergo a physical exam, a review of your medical history, mental health counseling, and tests such as blood tests. Bariatric weight loss patients also typically receive nutrition counseling and extensive education regarding lifestyle adjustments. Bariatric weight loss patients who smoke may be advised to quit before the surgery. A physician may instruct you to discontinue certain medications or supplements for a period of time. Since you will be placed under general anesthesia, your physician will let you know when you must cease food and drink intake before your surgery.

    Undergoing Sleeve Gastrectomy

    When you arrive at the bariatric weight loss center, an IV line will be placed and a breathing tube will be inserted into your throat. If the bariatric surgery can be performed using minimally invasive techniques, then the surgeon will make several small incisions in the abdomen. The stomach will be inflated and surgical staples will divide the stomach. The new stomach is often compared to the shape of a slender banana. The remainder of the stomach is removed.

    Recovering from the Procedure

    Patients are typically discharged from the hospital in about two to three days. You’ll receive detailed post-operative instructions, including steps to take to reduce the risk of infection and support healing. You’ll also need to follow your doctor’s dietary instructions.

    The Center for Surgical Weight Loss at Riverside Community Hospital has been designated as a Center of Excellence by the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program from the American College of Surgeons. In addition to providing sleeve gastrectomy and other bariatric weight loss procedures in Riverside, we offer extensive patient education, seminars, and support groups. Call our Consult-A-Nurse line at (951) 788-3000 to find out more.

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Disclaimer: The materials provided are intended for informational purposes only. You should contact your doctor for medical advice. Use of and access to this website or other materials do not create a physician-patient relationship. The opinions expressed through this website are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the hospital, medical staff, or any individual physician or other healthcare professional.
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