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Health Articles

High Blood Pressure in Men

Once men reach the age of 45, they have a higher risk of developing high blood pressure. High blood pressure is defined as a blood pressure of 140/90 or higher. It can increase your risk for heart failure, kidney failure and vision problems. “One in three... Read more

Preclampsia Condition Complicates Pregnancy

Preeclampsia usually involves high blood pressure and protein in the urine. If an expectant mother has these symptoms in her 20th week of pregnancy or later, she may have preeclampsia, and a reason to see her physician. “Preeclampsia usually is mild, but it can be devastating,” says... Read more

Ticks Make Missourians Sick

Check for ticks. Ehrlichiosis can make you sick. “Ehrlichiosis is a common tick-borne illness here – Missouri is one of the three most common states,” says Charles Edward LaValle III, MD, infectious disease specialist at Saint Francis Medical Center. “It’s similar to Rocky Mountain spotted fever, except... Read more

Chest Pain Center Saves Lives

When a patient with chest pain comes to Saint Francis Medical Center’s Emergency and Trauma Center, time is of the essence. Saint Francis’ Chest Pain Center – a part of the facility that includes the Emergency Room, catheterization lab and rooms for heart patients – ensures... Read more

Avoiding Hip Fractures

Hip fractures are a common injury in our aging population. Because they can be devastating for a person who already has several other health problems, it is best to take steps to avoid fractures. “In the older population, you have to be very honest with yourselves... Read more

Helping You Lose – Fitness Assessment and Prescription

New Fitness Plus members are eligible for a free fitness assessment. This assessment session includes Height, weight and body measurements Muscular endurance Cardiovascular fitness Body mass index (BMI) Body fat You can sign up for your assessment at the fitness desk on the second floor or by calling 573-331-5964. After your assessment,... Read more

Sleeve Gastrectomy: A Life-changing Tool

Angie Hankins didn’t think she looked obese, but the facts told her otherwise. Her shirt size was 3XL. Her weight fluctuated between 250 to 270 pounds – more than 100 pounds overweight. Her doctor had detected multiple comorbidities of obesity, including gastric reflux, hypertension and diabetes. Angie... Read more

New Joint Recipients Dance the Night Away

“Graduates” of Saint Francis Medical Center’s Center for Joint Replacement & Revision had the opportunity to dance the night away at “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” the Center’s annual celebration, on June 7. More than 200 attendees enjoyed dancing, hors d’oeuvres, door prizes and portrait photography at... Read more

Water Wins, Sports Drinks Second Best

When hydrating for the big game, make sure you’re drinking a sports drink like Gatorade, and not an energy drink like Red Bull. For everyday hydration, however, water is always best. “Sports drinks have electrolyte replacements, specifically sodium and potassium, to keep your electrolytes in balance as... Read more

Mass in Kidney May Mean Cancer

Kidney cancer is one of the most aggressive cancers affecting the urinary system. It rarely causes signs or symptoms in its early stages. “Most kidney tumors are discovered incidentally when X-ray or MRI is performed to evaluate an unrelated complaint, and 80% of solid kidney masses... Read more

Helping You Lose – Fifth Annual Furry 5K

Please join Fitness Plus for our fifth annual Furry 5K Run and One-mile Walk on Saturday, June 15 at 8 am. Feel free to bring your furry friend, but dogs are not required for participation. Day-of registration is available from 7-7:45 am at Missouri Running Company.... Read more

Preventing Urinary Tract Infections

Drinking cranberry juice does not prevent urinary tract infections, contrary to popular belief. Some information in the past suggested cranberry juice was helpful, but most recent studies indicate it is not. Cranberries taste good and are unlikely to be harmful, but they are unlikely to help,... Read more

A Handy Guide to Carpal Tunnel

If the pain and numbness in your hand has you reaching for painkillers in the middle of the night, carpal tunnel syndrome could be the culprit. “Carpal tunnel syndrome – a condition that occurs when a nerve in the wrist gets compressed – can be much more... Read more

Shaking, Slowness, Stiffness May Be Parkinson’s

It used to be known as “shaking palsy.” Today, the neurological disorder known as Parkinson’s disease causes tremors, slowness and stiffness in 1 million Americans – including actor Michael J. Fox – with more than 50,000 new cases a year. Parkinson’s is a chronic disorder of the... Read more

Hearing Aid Picks Up Good Vibrations

A Baha device picks up good vibrations – and helps patients with hearing loss hear again. “A Baha device is like a bolt that’s placed into the back part of your skull, in your hair, so that nobody can see it,” says Adam S. Morgan, MD, otolaryngologist... Read more

Protect Your Child in the Sun

Children love being outside during the summer, but you need to be careful about exposing them to too much sun. “It is best to stay indoors during the midday hours—when the sun’s ultraviolet rays are most harmful—and head outside in the morning and late afternoon instead,”... Read more

Two Baby Girls, One Lifesaving Level III NICU

One blessed family has infinite reasons to be thankful for Saint Francis Medical Center’s Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Thanks to the wonderful care they received at this leading-edge facility, the whole Smith family is healthy and happy, even after two difficult pregnancies. Jana and... Read more

When Is a Mole a Sign of Melanoma?

When is a mole worth worrying about? When should it be a cause of concern? Although most moles are benign (noncancerous), they can sometimes be a sign of cancer. See a dermatologist if your mole is new, growing or otherwise changing. “Varied colors within a mole, irregular... Read more

Disruptive Dangerous: Sleep Apnea Is More Than Snores

The snoring from sleep apnea may disturb your household. The other symptoms of sleep apnea – interrupted breathing, shortness of breath, reduced oxygen – can eventually endanger your life. For the sake of yourself and the people around you, follow these steps to manage your condition. First... Read more


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