Understanding Hysterectomies

woman with doctor 486487591 (1)A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure that involves removing a woman’s uterus.   It is a common operation, in fact, the CDC reports that an estimated 11.7 percent of women between the ages of 40-44 have had a hysterectomy and approximately 600,000 procedures are performed annually.

Hysterectomies are used to treat several health conditions, some of which include:

  • Uterine fibroids
  • Gynecologic cancer
  • Endometriosis
  • Uterine prolapse
  • Chronic pelvic pain
  • Adenomyosis

Hysterectomies can be performed utilizing several techniques.  Based on the course of treatment that is best for you, your surgeon may recommend one of the following options:

  • Abdominal hysterectomy
  • Laparoscopic-assisted abdominal hysterectomy
  • Vaginal hysterectomy
  • Laparoscopic-assisted vaginal hysterectomy
  • Robotic- assisted hysterectomy

Procedures may require the complete or partial removal of the uterus.  If a complete removal is required, a total hysterectomy may be performed. In the case where the uterus and surrounding structures such as the fallopian tubes and ovaries need to be removed, a radical hysterectomy is often recommended. Treatment involving the partial removal of the uterus may include a supracervical hysterectomy.

As with all surgical procedures there are risks to consider.  However some techniques can offer patients a reduced risk of complications such as pain and bleeding. Laparoscopic and robotic assisted hysterectomies may result in less pain, minimal bleeding, a lower risk in infection and shorter hospital stays.

Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology has a full program to provide total health care to women. Our highly trained specialists utilize the latest techniques and equipment, such as ultrasonography, color Doppler, laser, laparoscopic and robotic surgery, in the diagnoses and treatment of female disorders. Robotic surgeons at Flushing Hospital are board certified or board approved and have performed countless procedures resulting in high rates of success.

 

 

Gynecological procedures performed robotically by Flushing Hospital’s team of surgeons include hysterectomy, ovarian cystectomy, salpingo-oophorectomy, sacrocolpopexy, tubal reanastomosis, dermoid cystectomy and more.

For more information or to make an appointment please call, 718-670-8994

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Facts About Robotic Surgery

You hear the words “robotic surgery” and your natural reaction might be one of fear. After all, surgery under any circumstance is intimidating; adding a robot into the mix could only increase your anxiety. While your concerns are justified, Flushing Hospital would like to share the following five facts about robotic surgery to put your fears to rest.Davinci Image

  1. Robotic surgery is always performed by an experienced surgeon.
    Using the state-of-the art da Vinci robotic surgical system, specially trained surgeons at Flushing Hospital are in total control of small, precise, minimally invasive tools. This system offers the surgeon more exact movements and a far wider range of motion within the small surgical site.
  2. Robotic surgery means smaller and fewer scars.
    Since surgeons only need two or three small incisions to successfully complete surgery with the da Vinci Si surgical system, larger, more invasive incisions are now a thing of the past. These small incisions heal much more quickly and resolve with far less scarring.
  3. Robotic surgery results in less pain or risk of infection.
    Minimally invasive surgery results in smaller incisions and much less pain during healing and recovery. Also, since the surgical site is smaller, the risk of infection is reduced dramatically.
  4. Robotic surgery results in a much faster recovery period.
    Due to the smaller incisions, patients tend to recover much more quickly from robotic surgery. In many cases patients require minimal hospital stays and are able to return to normal activities within days of the procedure.
  5. Robotic surgery treats a wide variety conditions.
    At Flushing Hospital Medical Center, many of our surgical specialists have been trained to expertly complete a wide range of procedures in the fields of gynecology, urology, bariatric surgery, and general surgery.

For more information about the da Vinci surgical system at Flushing Hospital, please call 718-670-3135.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

A Robot Is Removing My Hernia

Hernia

A hernia is the protrusion of an organ or tissue through the structure or muscle that usually contains it. A hernia occurs immediately or over a long period of time when a combination of muscle strain and weakness is present in the body.

Hernias are most common in the abdomen, but they can also appear in the upper thigh, belly button, and groin areas. Most hernias are not immediately life threatening, but they don’t go away on their own and can require surgery to prevent potentially dangerous complications.

Factors that strain your body and may cause a hernia, especially if your muscles are weak, include:

  • Being pregnant, (which puts pressure on your abdomen)
  • Being constipated, which causes you to strain when having a bowel movement
  • Heavy weight lifting
  • Fluid in the abdomen, or ascites
  • Suddenly gaining weight
  • Straining with urination
  • An Underlying malignancy
  • Persistent coughing or sneezing

Common symptoms of a hernia include:

  • Pain or discomfort in the affected area, especially when bending over, coughing, or lifting
  • Feeling weakness, pressure or heaviness in the abdomen
  • A bulge or protrusion which enlarges with straining and resolves when lying down
  • Feeling a burning or aching sensation at the site of the bulge

If you suspect that these symptoms could be a hernia, visit your doctor for an examination of the affected area and be sure to detail all symptoms. If the results reveal a hernia then the next step would be surgical repair. Whether or not you need surgery depends on the size of your hernia and the severity of your symptoms. During hernia surgery, the weak tissue in the wall of the abdomen or groin is repaired with a mesh.

Technology in surgery is constantly evolving with the intent of increasing positive clinical outcomes and improving patient safety and recovery. One of the greatest medical advances to occur in the pursuit of these goals was the development of surgical robots. Flushing Hospital Medical Center in its dedication to providing patients with the most technologically advanced tools in health care, acquired the da Vinci Surgical Robot. This tool allows for a minimally invasive surgery offering many benefits including, less pain, faster healing time, shorter hospital stay and less risk of infection.

If you have been diagnosed with a hernia and are looking to have the procedure done using the da Vinci surgical robot, Flushing Hospital Medical Center offers this procedure.

For more information about robotic surgery or procedures performed by our surgeons, please contact Flushing Hospital’s Department of Surgery at 718-670-3135.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Lung Cancer and Robotic Surgical Intervention

davinci-630x355The American Cancer Society estimates that over 224,000 new cases of lung cancer will be diagnosed in 2016 and that more than 150,000 will die from the disease this year. Lung cancer is the second most common type of cancer identified in both men and women.  A history of smoking definitely contributes to a higher risk of being diagnosed with the disease, though non-smokers also can develop lung cancer.
Signs and Symptoms of Lung Cancer include:
• A cough that doesn’t get better
• Coughing up blood
• Shortness of breath
• Chest pain
• Wheezing
• Hoarseness
• Headache
• Weight loss that isn’t intentional
If lung cancer is suspected, a physician will usually order a few tests to make the diagnosis definitive. A chest x-ray will be performed and if there are any lesions found on the lung a  CT scan will to get a better view of the lungs. An exam of the sputum can sometimes reveal lung cancer cells and to complete the diagnosis a lung biopsy will be done to examine the cells to see if they are cancerous.
Depending on the stage of the cancer, treatment options vary and can include chemotherapy, radiation and / or surgery.  A common surgical option is called a lobectomy, removal one of the lobes of the lung. Flushing Hospital’s expert  team of surgeons now perform this procedure robotically, with the assistance of the latest da Vinci robotic surgery system. This highly advanced, minimally invasive technology offers patients at Flushing Hospital a high success rate and a quicker recovery time.
To schedule an appointment with a surgeon at Flushing Hospital who specializes in minimally invasive robotic surgery, please call 718-670 – 3135.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Robotics: Gallstone Removal

gallbladder removal

Many people have gallstones without knowing it. Gallstones are hard deposits in your gallbladder, a small organ that stores a digestive fluid made in the liver. Bile usually dissolves or breaks down cholesterol. However, if your liver makes more cholesterol than your bile can dissolve, hard stones may develop.

Not all people experience symptoms from gallstones. According to the American College of Gastroenterology, 80 percent of people who have gallstones don’t have any pain at all. These are called “silent” gallstones. The most common symptom of gallstones is pain in the right upper quadrant of your abdomen.

Other symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • A yellowish tint in your skin or eyes, which can indicate jaundice
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • abdominal pain

Many risk factors for gallstones are related to diet.

These include:

  • Being overweight or obese
  • Eating a diet that’s high in fat or cholesterol

To diagnose gallstones your doctor will perform a physical examination that includes checking your eyes and skin for visible changes in color. The examination may involve using diagnostic testing to see inside your body. These tests include Ultrasound, Abdominal CT Scan, Gallbladder Radionuclide Scan, and blood tests.

If gallstones are detected in your gallbladder surgery is often the first option if you have significant symptoms. Technology in surgery is constantly evolving with the intent of increasing positive clinical outcomes and improving patient safety and recovery. One of the greatest medical advances to occur in the pursuit of these goals was the development of surgical robots. Flushing Hospital Medical Center in its dedication to supplying patients with superior and technologically advanced tools in health care, acquired the da Vinci Surgical Robot. This tool allows for a minimally invasive surgery with a faster recovery time.

For more information about robotic surgery or procedures performed by our surgeons, please contact Flushing Hospital’s Department of Surgery at 718-670-3135.

For more hospital events, highlights, health and  fitness tips, visit us on 

Facebook.com/JamaicaHospital  or Facebook.com/Flushing Hospital 

and follow us on Twitter @JamaicaHospital or @FHMC_NYC

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

History of Sutures

Sutures (also known as stitches) have been around for thousands of years and are used to hold wounds together until the healing process is complete. They were first described as far back 3000 BC in ancient Egyptian literature. For centuries they were made from plant materials like hemp, or cotton or animal material such as tendons, silk, and arteries. The material of choice for many centuries was catgut, a fine thread woven from sheep intestines.

In the 1800’s it became apparent that it was a good idea to sterilize the catgut before using it to suture wounds, In the 1860’s the physician Joseph Lister devised a technique for sterilizing catgut and it was perfected finally in 1906. Eventually, sterilization took place by exposing the suture material to radiation which was more effective than previous techniques. Each development helped to reduce the risk of infection.

Early in the 20th century synthetic materials were developed that could be used for suturing. These synthetic materials, still used today, were categorized as “absorbable” or ‘non-absorbable’ depending on their ability to be absorbed during the wound healing process.

Absorbable sutures usually dissolve anywhere from 10 days to eight weeks and are made from:

  • Silk
  • Catgut
  • Polyglycolic acid
  • Polylactic acid
  • Monocryl

Non – absorbable sutures don’t dissolve naturally and are usually removed after the wound has closed. They are made from:

  • Nylon
  • Polyester
  • Stainless steel
  • PVDF
  • Polypropelene

Additional new technology has added laser technology and surgical glue to the tools available to physicians for wound healing. These new materials help the process go quicker and also make the scars less visible. However, even with all the new modern techniques for suturing a wound, many of the basic concepts used today were first developed thousands of years ago.

Surgical stitches

Surgical stitches

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

History of Instrument Sterilization

200470463-001Instruments that come in contact with the body during all surgical procedures and many non-surgical procedures must be free of all microbial elements. This is to ensure that the risk of infection is kept to a minimum.
Throughout history different methods were adopted using materials that were available at that time. In 3000 BC the Egyptians used pitch and tar as antiseptics. In later years the fumes from burning sulfur were found to cleanse objects of infectious material.
In 1680 a French physicist, Denis Papin invented a pressure cooker that would trap boiling water, convert it into steam, and was found to cleanse objects by cooking them. This device was further improved upon during the next two hundred years and it became possible to additionally sterilize linens, dressings, gowns using steam. Two major contributions to the art of sterilization came in the 1860’s when the French chemist and microbiologist Louis Pasteur wrote extensively on how germs cause disease and the English physician, Joseph Lister, developed a technique that used carbolic acid as a spray to disinfect instruments. During the late 1800’s steam sterilization became much more widespread. Surgical instruments were also being made out of materials that were better able to withstand high levels of heat. This allowed them to be processed at higher temperatures and  were being made with smooth surfaces which allowed for more thorough cleaning.
During the 1900’s various improvements were introduced. This included sterilization with steam,  irradiation, with glutaraldehyde. More recently, sterilization of instruments can be achieved using high temperature / high pressure, ultraviolet light, and the  most commonly used chemical for sterilization is ethylene oxide.  It can be used on almost all instruments, both metal and non-metal.
The importance of cleanliness when it involves objects that come in contact with the body cannot be stressed enough. It was recognized in ancient times and improvements are still evolving today for the safety of patients.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Benefit of the Annual Physical

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The greatest benefit of an annual physical is knowledge for both you and your physician.  An annual visit establishes a baseline for your personal health.  Armed with this information, your doctor can detect unhealthy trends before they become risk factors.

Nearly one third of the population with a chronic disease is unaware that they have the disease.  According to the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease, as many as 100,000 lives could be saved each year by increasing preventive care services.

Health screenings, such as blood glucose and blood pressure tests can easily detect the two most chronic conditions, diabetes and hypertension before they cause serious health issues.  The Centers for Disease Control cites that seven out of every 10 deaths are caused by chronic disease.  Proper management of these conditions can prevent unnecessary hospitalization.

In order to get the most out of your annual physical, take a moment to prepare:

  • Make a list of your health concerns
  • Make a list of all the medications you are taking
  • Get a copy of your medical records and your family medical history

Dozens of Patient Care Specialists, on staff at Flushing Hospital Medical Center, are ready to provide you with your annual check-up.

Flushing Hospital is a certified Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) in its Ambulatory Care Center. The Center offers more than 50 outpatient general and specialty services for children adolescents and adults.

Flushing Hospital’s ambulatory care services accepts most major insurances, is centrally located and has convenient patient hours.  Call 718-670-5486 to schedule an appointment.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Wound Care and Nutrition

ulcers -457704719The nutritional status of a patient plays a large role in their body’s ability undergo wound healing. It requires a higher than normal level of energy and nutrients if it is going to be successful. The body requires an additional 35 calories per kilogram of body weight to help a chronic wound to heal. This will include eating a well-balanced diet that includes protein, grains, fruits, vegetables, and dairy.
For proper wound healing, a well-balanced diet should include 1.5 grams of protein for every kilogram of body weight. A kilogram is equal to 2.2 pounds. Keeping hydrated is also very important, eight glasses of water per day should be the minimum and more if the person sweats profusely, has a wound that is draining, or if vomiting and or diarrhea are present. Meals should include meats, eggs, milk, cheese, nuts, seeds, yogurt and dried beans. In some people who have difficulty obtaining proper caloric intake from their daily meals, high protein and high calorie shakes can be used as supplements. Two amino acids, found in foods having protein and that have been identified as having potential to help wound healing are arginine and glutamine.
People with diabetes often have difficulty with wound healing, and this is due to poor circulation, nerve damage which leads to the constant breakdown of healthy tissue components needed to heal, and a higher than normal level of sugar in the blood which can lead to higher rates of infection and causes fluids to be drained from the body. It is therefore very important for a person with diabetes to keep tight control of their disease.
Wound healing also requires additional levels of vitamins and minerals, however care must be taken too not take in more that the daily recommended amounts because this can have a negative effect on the body..
It is important to consult with a physician about how to eat successfully when trying to heal a wound and also a nutritionist who specializes in wound care.
If you have a chronic or non-healing wound, you may be a candidate for Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s outpatient Wound Care Center. To schedule an appointment or speak with a clinician, please call 718-670-4542

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Does a larger waist size indicate a shorter life expectancy?

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Weight and body mass index (BMI) are used to calculate whether a person is normal, overweight or obese. Recent studies conclude that waist measurements might also indicate health risks.

Data analyzed from 11 studies involving 650,386 adults, most in their early 60s over a nine year span concluded that people with the largest waist sizes were most likely to die at a younger age from cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, or cancer than those with smaller waists.

Men whose waists measured 43 inches or more were 52 percent more likely to increase their risk of death  than men with 35-inch waists; women with 37-inch or larger waists had an 80 percent higher mortality risk than those with waists of 28 inches or less. The chances of dying prematurely increased 9 percent for women and 7 percent for men for every two-inch increase in waist size. Compared with those who had the smallest waists, men with the largest waists had a life expectancy that was three years shorter; for women, five years shorter. The elevated likelihood of dying early applied across the board, affecting even people with normal BMIs.

According to the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, this “obesity paradox” is because BMI does not distinguish between fat and muscle it is a flawed measure of heart risk. Waist size provides a far more accurate way to predict a patient’s chances of dying at an early age from a heart attack or other causes. BMI measurements are still important, but other considerations such as body shape and fat distribution should also be factored in.

Do you know your waist circumference? Here’s how to measure it:

Locate your hip bone on your abdomen.

Wrap a measuring tape around your body at this level. It should be snug but not pressing into your bare skin.

The tape should be parallel to the floor. Relax, exhale and read the measurement.

Being physically active, eating well and watching portions can make a positive impact on your waist and overall health. Discuss your health risks and goals with your medical provider.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.