Northwest Medical Center Coming Soon!

For nearly 60 years Gonzaba Medical Group has been the medical innovation pioneer of San Antonio. Starting with a small clinic on the southside, Gonzaba has grown to over seven locations across the city. The Gonzaba Healthcare Model offers all essential healthcare services in one place. This practice provides faster, more efficient results and eliminates trips to the emergency room. The Northwest Medical Complex will offer family medicine, physical therapy, physical medicine and rehabilitation, and an urgent care clinic.

Gonzaba is revolutionizing healthcare by putting the patient first. Longtime Northwest patient Claire Gallegos has this to say about the new state-of-the-art Northwest facility:

“I am a long-time satisfied patient of Gonzaba Medical Group. The New Gonzaba Northwest Medical Center will bring the very best services under one roof in a modern, convenient location.”

The new Northwest Medical Center is the finest representation of the Gonzaba Model. This 28,065 sq ft medical complex will open in May and will be equipped with the latest healthcare technology, experienced and compassionate medical staff, physicians and specialists, as well as an array of medical services. Here is a sneak peek at what this new location will look like.

5 Daily Habits for a Healthy Heart

5 Things You Should Do Daily for a Healthy Heart –

Most people know that exercise and a healthy diet are good for your heart. But, have you ever wondered what else you should be doing every day to ensure your heart stays in good condition? Below we have listed some daily habits you should start doing if you don’t already.

Eat healthy fats, not trans fats

Not all fats are bad for you, it is important to know the difference between healthy fats and fats you should avoid. The fats that we need in our diets are saturated, poly-saturated and unsaturated fats. One fat that we do not need in our diet is trans-fat. Trans-fat is known for increasing your risk of developing heart disease or having a stroke over a lifetime. Trans-fats clog your arteries and raise your bad cholesterol levels (LDL) and lower your good cholesterol levels (HDL). Cutting trans-fats out of your diet will improve blood flow throughout your body.

Maintain good dental hygiene

You might be wondering why your dental health has anything to do with your heart health, but a person’s dental health is a good indication of their overall health. The reason behind this is because people who have gum disease often have the same risk factors for heart disease. There have been several different clinical studies that show that bacteria in the mouth which is involved with the development of gum disease can eventually move into the bloodstream. Once the bacteria move into the bloodstream that causes an elevation in C-reactive protein, which is a maker of inflammation in the blood vessels. All these changes can increase your risk of heart disease.

Avoid sitting for too long at one time

There have been several studies done over the years that have suggested that sitting down for too long is detrimental to your health despite how much exercise you do. This unwelcome news specifically affects people who sit at a desk job every day. Results of observational studies have shown that people who sat more have a drastic percent increase in both cardiovascular events and death caused by these events.

Get enough sleep

Sleep is the key component of good health. Not getting enough sleep puts you at a higher risk for the cardiovascular disease no matter your age or any other health habits. A research study done showed that adults over the age of 45 who slept fewer than six hours per night were nearly twice as likely to have a stroke or heart attack versus people who sleep six to eight hours per night. You should make sleep a priority by getting eight hours of sleep at night.

Avoid smoking & secondhand smoke like your life depends on it (because it does)
Everyone knows how bad smoking is for a person, but secondhand smoke is essentially just as bad. Numerous studies have shown that the risk of developing some sort of heart disease is nearly 25 to 30 percent higher for people who are exposed to secondhand smoke. The American Heart Association has stated that the exposure to tobacco smoke contributes to about 34,000 premature heart disease deaths. The chemicals that a cigarette smoke emits promote the development of plaque buildup in the arteries.

Heart health should be taken seriously, by following these 5 daily practices your heart health can significantly improve. Take care of your heart, it’s the only one you have!

Source sitting: https://health.clevelandclinic.org/2016/01/5-things-to-do-daily-to-keep-your-heart-healthy/

What Are the Common Illnesses Treated by Primary Care Doctors?

Most people will need to see a doctor at least a few times in their life. While everybody in San Antonio knows that routine check-ups and yearly physicals are conducted by their primary care doctor, not everyone realizes that their primary care physician in San Antonio also provides diagnosis and treatment for a wide range of common illnesses and conditions. In fact, the doctor often serves as the first contact that people suffering from some sort of illness or malady will need to see for treatment.

A primary care doctor is also referred to as a general practice doctor. Insurance companies typically require individuals to see a primary care physician first before making an appointment with any other specialists, as the physician is best equipped to properly diagnose any problems and recommend further treatment if necessary. The primary care doctor has studied extensively and will have a great deal of experience in identifying, diagnosing and treating many different common illnesses.

Primary care doctors also treat the whole family, and as such have knowledge of a family medical history. This makes it easier for them to properly diagnose some of the symptoms and conditions of their patients based on previous appointments. They also know to look for red flags and other indicators of an illness that someone who doesn’t have knowledge of a family history wouldn’t think to look for.

Some of the common illnesses treated by primary care doctors include the following:

Bronchitis

A common malady, bronchitis occurs when a person’s main air passages become inflamed. Common symptoms include coughing, and bronchitis is often mistaken for a common cold. People suffering from bronchitis for an extensive period of time are known to have chronic bronchitis.

High or Low Blood Pressure

Another very common and also very serious condition, high or low blood pressure can lead to heart disease, kidney failure, and other critical conditions. This is why primary care physicians also check their patients’ blood pressure whenever they come in for an appointment.

Diabetes

There are two main types of diabetes affecting millions of people in the United States. Primary care physicians can make a diagnosis of diabetes after performing a blood glucose test.

Headaches and Migraines

Everybody gets a headache every now and then, but continued headaches ranging from mild to severe may signal a problem. Very strong, painful headaches are usually migraines, which can often be quite debilitating. Millions of people are affected by migraines, and other factors in a person’s lifestyle can be the cause of regular headaches.

High Cholesterol

High blood cholesterol can lead to many serious conditions. Many factors can cause high cholesterol, including diet, weight and a lack of regular exercise or physical activity.

Asthma

This chronic lung disease typically starts in childhood, causing chronic shortness of breath, coughing and wheezing. Many different factors can cause asthma to develop, including genetics.

Bladder Infections

If not treated, a bladder infection can become very serious. Also known as a urinary tract infection, this malady results in over 8 million visits to a primary care physician each year.

Pain

People should make an appointment to see their primary care physician if they have been feeling pain in any area of the body for a significant length of time. Depending where a person is feeling pain can mean several different things, and the primary care doctor will know which tests to conduct in order to better determine the cause of the pain.

Respiratory and Sinus Infections

If not treated by a physician, an infection can turn serious and lead to other health problems. What starts as a relatively uncomfortable condition can worsen over time, so it is always best to see a primary care doctor for diagnosis and treatment.

The above list is just a relatively small sampling of the many illnesses, conditions and symptoms that can be treated by a primary care doctor. Other illnesses and conditions that an individual might see a primary care physician for include:

  • Cuts and scrapes
  • Broken bones
  • Sprains
  • Swelling in the arms or legs
  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Minor burns
  • Menopause
  • Cancer screenings
  • Fever
  • Nosebleeds
  • Ear infections
  • Allergies
  • ADHD
  • Fungus issues
  • Skin conditions

Subsequently, it can be said that a primary care physician offers complete medical care for the whole family under one roof. Visiting a primary care physician is also typically less expensive than unnecessarily going to the hospital, and if a specialist is needed, the primary care doctor can help patients find a medical specialist that is knowledgeable and experienced as well so that they will be well taken care of.

In addition to treating all of the above illnesses and conditions, the primary care physician also provides preventative care and administers vaccines. Anyone can begin to see a primary care doctor at any point in their life. To make an appointment with a primary care doctor, San Antonio residents can contact the Gonzaba Medical Group. Patients will receive the quality medical care and attention they need, and they can rest assured that their health needs will always be put first.

What Are Common Hematology Tests?

Hematology involves the study of the blood, in particular how blood can affect overall health or disease. Hematology tests include tests on the blood, blood proteins and blood-producing organs.

These tests can evaluate a variety of blood conditions including infection, anemia, inflammation, hemophilia, blood-clotting disorders, leukemia and the body’s response to chemotherapy treatments. Tests may be routine and regular, or they may be called upon to diagnose serious conditions in urgent situations. In many cases, the results of a blood test can give an accurate assessment of body conditions and how internal or external influences may affect a patient’s health.

This article will explain some of the more common hematology tests and what purpose they serve.

Full Blood Count Testing

Full blood count or FBC testing is a routine test that evaluates three major components found in blood: white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets. There are many reasons for a full blood count test, but common reasons include infection, anemia and suspected haemato-oncological diseases.

White Blood Cells (WBC) Testing

White blood cells are responsible for assisting the body’s defenses in fighting illnesses and disease. Knowing how many white cells are within the blood can prove invaluable for diagnosing and treating a range of conditions. Increased white blood cells are common in people fighting infection or suffering from anemia.

Red Blood Cells (RBC) Testing

The number of red blood cells in the body can increase through dehydration, stress and anxiety, or failure of the bone marrow, to name a few conditions. Decreased blood cells can be the result of receiving chemotherapy treatments, chronic inflammatory diseases, blood loss and some types of cancer.

Hemoglobin Testing

Without hemoglobin, oxygen would not be able to travel around the body. This oxygen-rich protein is essential to life, but it can increase or decrease due to a number of conditions. Dehydration, congestive heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease can all cause an increase in hemoglobin levels, while blood loss, anemia, liver disease and lymphoma can result in a decrease.

Hematocrit and Platelets

Hematocrit, or HCT as it is commonly known in medical circles, is the ratio of plasma to red blood cells. Plasma accounts for the fluid component in blood. HCT testing is usually carried out when hydration levels and anemia are suspected of causing problems. HCT levels can be affected in the same way as hemoglobin levels.

If anemia is suspected, it is common for doctors to carry out testing on red blood cells, hemoglobin and hematocrit at the same time.

Platelets are responsible for causing the blood to clot. Without them blood would continue to flow from a wound and would need immediate medical attention in order to stem the flow. Increased platelet levels can be the result of inflammatory conditions such as trauma, acute infection and a number of malignant cancers. Decreases in platelet levels can occur from anemia, coagulation disorders such as sickle cell anemia, alcohol toxicity and infection.

Mono Screening

Infectious mononucleosis, also known as mono, is caused by the Epstein Barr virus. It can be a serious condition and is highly contagious. Mononucleosis testing involves looking for the antibodies the immune system makes as it works to fight the infection.

Vitamin B12 Deficiency Testing

A lack of vitamin B12 can make the patient feel tired, run down and without energy. A simple blood test can detect whether vitamin B12 levels have decreased. This vitamin is essential for healthy blood cells, healthy nerves and stable DNA. If a deficiency is detected, this condition is easy to manage with supplements, changes to the diet and vitamin shots.

Renal Profiling

The kidneys are responsible for a lot of waste management and cleansing in the body. Renal profiling can provide a unique and valuable snapshot of how the kidneys are functioning. The blood test will include testing the levels of creatinine and blood urea nitrogen, both responsible for healthy kidney function.

Cholesterol Testing

High levels of cholesterol have been linked to heart disease and other potentially fatal conditions for some time. Cholesterol testing can alert a doctor as to whether a patient needs to take action to lower blood cholesterol and whether further treatment is required. The blood test itself involves testing the Total Cholesterol, LDL Cholesterol (the bad), HDL Cholesterol (the good), Triglycerides and the patient’s risk ratio.

Blood Glucose Testing

Blood glucose testing is used to show how well the patient has been able to control his or her diabetes over the past few months. It is a non-fasting test that shows the level of glucose values in the blood. It is also known as A1c, Glycohemoglobin or HbA1c testing. While it is a very accurate test, it should never be used in place of routine daily glucose testing.

Arranging a Blood Test

If you need to arrange a routine or urgent blood test with a hematology specialist in San Antonio, give our team a call or get in touch through our website to arrange an appointment. We specialize in many types of blood testing and a wide range of blood disorders and conditions. We would be delighted to arrange a convenient appointment for you.