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Palms West Hospital is proud to have provided the Western Communities with healthcare excellence since 1986.

A Look at the Recovery Process Following Spine Surgery

With the minimally invasive techniques used in modern spine surgery, you can expect a shorter recovery and significant improvement in your spine health, but there is still an extensive rehabilitation process that will follow your surgery to ensure proper healing and long-term function. When you undergo a procedure such as discectomy, spinal fusion, or laminectomy, you can expect the following aspects in the recovery process.

Pain management

You will likely have a prescription for pain medication to take once you return home from the hospital. Paired with measures to manage inflammation and swelling—rest and hot/cold therapy—medication should help you stay comfortable through the initial healing period.

Gradual reintroduction to activity

While your doctor will likely encourage that you get up and move around as you recover, you will want to avoid taking on too much activity too quickly. You should steer clear of heavy lifting and strenuous activity for several weeks after surgery, and you will want to avoid driving and taking long walks for about two weeks after surgery.

Physical therapy and rehabilitation

Physical therapy will be an important part of your rehabilitation, and it may begin before you even leave the hospital. Working with a physical therapist, you will be able to build muscle strength and flexibility while promoting faster healing in the spine. Your physical therapist will also ensure your safety by practicing day to day activities, such as dressing, getting in and out of a chair, and stabilizing the spine while bending and lifting.

If you are struggling with chronic back pain and considering spine surgery as a treatment option, connect with the Orthopedic & Spine Center at Palms West Hospital in Loxahatchee. You can reach us on our website or by calling (561) 345-7009 to speak with one of our registered nurses about our spine surgery program.


Signs of Flu Complications to Look for in Your Child

The flu can spread quickly through schools, playgrounds, and daycare facilities, so there is a good chance that your child will become ill during flu season. If your child does come down with the flu, he or she may be at a higher risk for complications that are generally not a problem for healthy adults. By looking out for the signs below, you can effectively manage flu complications, such as pneumonia and other bacterial infections that may require care in the ER.

High fever and rash

If your child has a fever over 100 degrees, you may need to visit the ER or call the pediatrician. When a rash is present with fever, do not hesitate to seek immediate medical care. You should also look out for warning signs such as extreme lethargy and confusion, which can indicate a seriously high fever.

Dehydration

One of the most common problems that can arise with the flu is dehydration, which will occur when a child is not drinking enough fluids or has vomiting and diarrhea preventing fluid retention. If your child does become dehydrated with the flu, a trip to the hospital may be necessary so that an IV can be inserted.

Improvement in symptoms followed by relapse

In some cases, children may appear to get better and then have an onslaught of new, worsening symptoms. This is a sign that a secondary infection such as bronchitis or pneumonia has occurred, and these illnesses can be much more serious than seasonal influenza.

When your child needs emergency care or specialized pediatric treatment in Loxahatchee, visit the Children’s Hospital at Palms West for our dedicated pediatric ER and kid-friendly facilities. To learn more about caring for your family with Palms West Hospital and the Children’s Hospital at Palms West, call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (561) 345-7009.


Understanding the Different Types of Bone Fractures

All fractures involve one or more breaks in a bone, yet there are many different types of fractures. Patients who seek emergency care at Palms West Hospital for bone fractures are quickly evaluated via diagnostic imaging scans such as X-rays. Once the orthopedic care specialist determines the type of the fracture, he or she can recommend an appropriate treatment plan. Depending on the type of the fracture, treatment may involve surgery and immobilization.

Alignment of the Bones

One way orthopedic doctors classify fractures is by determining if the broken ends of the bone are out of alignment. A stable fracture, or non-displaced fracture, is one in which the ends remain within adequate alignment. Some physicians prefer to use the term “minimally displaced,” reasoning that even stable fractures involve some slight degree of misalignment. If the ends of the bones are not adequately aligned, the patient may undergo surgery to correct this problem.

Direction of the Break

Another way to categorize fractures is by determining the direction of the break. If the break travels across the bone, it is a transverse fracture. An oblique fracture refers to a break at an angle. A comminuted fracture involves the shattering of the bone into three or more parts.

Damage to the Skin

Often, fractures are contained within the body. That is, not all fractures penetrate the skin. These are closed fractures. An open fracture involves the penetration of the skin, either by a fragment of the bone or by the force of the impact that caused the injury.

Age of the Patient

One type of fracture only occurs in young children. A young child’s bones have not yet fully solidified and they aren’t as rigid as the bones of an adult. Children may sustain greenstick fractures, which occur when the force of an impact causes the bone to bow or bend slightly, rather than break. The bone may instead have a crack on one side.

Exceptional orthopedics near Loxahatchee, FL, is just one of the many high-quality service lines offered by Palms West Hospital. At our community hospital, you’ll find physicians with expertise in caring for fractures, performing robotic surgery, and providing emergency care. You can speak with a registered nurse around the clock by calling (561) 345-7009.


Common Questions About Robotic Surgery

Robotic surgery is among the latest innovations in the surgical field. Also known as robot-assisted surgery, this specialized equipment allows surgeons to perform minimally invasive surgeries with superior visualization, as compared to surgeries performed with traditional laparoscopic instruments. Currently, some of the most common robotic surgeries performed today include gynecologic and urologic surgeries. However, this technology is sometimes available for other fields, such as orthopedics.

Which Types of Procedures Are Available?

The types of procedures that may be performed with robotic systems can vary from hospital to hospital. In general, robot-assisted surgery may be appropriate for gynecologic surgeries such as:

  • Hysterectomy

  • Single-site hysterectomy

  • Myomectomy

  • Sacrocolpopexy

  • Endometriosis resection

Additionally, robotic surgery technology can be used for a range of urologic procedures, including the following:

  • Cystectomy

  • Pyeloplasty

  • Nephrectomy

  • Prostatectomy

These are just a few examples. Robotic surgery systems may also be used to perform cardiac, thoracic, colorectal, head and neck, and general surgeries.

How Does the Surgeon Operate the Equipment?

One of the most common misconceptions about robotic surgery is that a robot is in control of the surgical procedure. In fact, the robotic instruments do not make any movements unless directed to do so by the surgeon. At all times during the procedure, the surgeon is seated at a console, which is close to the patient on the operating table. At the console, the surgeon uses miniature, wristed instruments to precisely control the surgical instruments in real time. The equipment provides 3D visualization of the surgical field, which is vastly superior to visualization with traditional laparoscopic instruments.

What Are the Benefits of Robotic Surgery?

The enhanced visualization and precise movements are just two of the potential benefits of robotic surgery. It’s important for patients to understand that all surgical procedures carry inherent risks—robotic surgery is no exception. However, robotic surgery may be associated with a reduced risk of complications, reduced bleeding, and accelerated recovery time.

Palms West Hospital is pleased to offer robotic surgery in Loxahatchee, FL, with our two state-of-the-art da Vinci Surgical Systems. Our surgical services with this advanced technology are available for patients undergoing urologic, gynecologic, and general surgeries. Call (561) 345-7009 to speak with one of our registered nurses or browse our website to learn more about our medical services, including obstetrics and pediatrics.


Essential Guidelines for Heart Disease Prevention

There are many different risk factors of heart disease. Some of them are modifiable, while others, such as having a family history of heart disease, are not. Since there are multiple modifiable risk factors, an effective heart disease prevention plan must consider all of the applicable issues. If you’re concerned about your heart health, consider talking to a physician at Palms West Hospital about ways of reducing your risk. Palms West Hospital also provides emergency care and critical care for those who have suffered life-threatening cardiac events.

Know Your Numbers

Many people are at risk of heart disease without realizing it. Consider asking your doctor about having a blood test to check your cholesterol levels. The test will reveal your high-density lipoprotein (HDL) and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels, along with your triglycerides. Your doctor can explain if your results are within a healthy range. It’s also a good idea to know your blood pressure and your blood glucose level.

Take Prescribed Medications as Directed

If you have abnormal cholesterol levels, high blood pressure, or high blood sugar, your doctor may prescribe medications along with recommending lifestyle changes. Taking your medications as prescribed can help manage your health and lower your risk of heart disease. If you experience side effects from medications, let your doctor know.

Lead an Active Lifestyle

Exercising on most days of the week is one of the most effective ways to improve your health. Physical activity in itself helps the heart muscle pump blood more effectively. However, exercise also helps prevent heart disease by supporting a healthy weight, along with ideal cholesterol levels and blood pressure.

Plan Heart-Healthy Meals

The word “diet” often makes people think of food deprivation. Instead of focusing on foods that you should eliminate from your meal plan, focus on foods that you should include. Good foods for heart health include vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean proteins from sources such as nuts and seeds.

The heart care team at Palms West Hospital works closely with patients to help them lead a heart-healthy lifestyle and manage medical conditions appropriately. For further information about our heart care serving Loxahatchee, FL, or our emergency care, visit our website and check out our health library. If you would like to speak with a registered nurse at our community hospital, give us a call at (561) 345-7009.


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