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Ascension Via Christi's blog

Prostate screenings: What the numbers mean

Prostate cancer

Prostate cancer, the most common non-skin cancer found in American men, is second only to lung cancer in male cancer deaths. However, with screening improvements in recent decades, there is now a 10-year survival rate for this slow-growing cancer.

What are the screening tests?

Primary care doctors will conduct a two-part screening:

Heart disease: Many types, many tests

According to recently released statistics from the American Heart Association, about 92.1 million Americans are living with some sort of heart disease or the after effects of a stroke and most of the rest of us have at least one or two risk factors. That’s why doctors use a variety of tests to look beyond the symptoms and discover exactly how your heart is performing.
And its why it is so important to have an established relationship with a primary care doctor and have an annual exam.

Six simple steps to remain heart healthy

hands make heart shape

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women, and it has been estimated as the underlying cause of death for one out of four deaths in the United States, according to the American Heart Association. But you’re never too old or too young to make lifestyle changes that can help prevent heart disease. 

What NOT to do when you have the flu

flu woman sick

Public health experts say this year’s flu season is the worst in nearly a decade, and the latest CDC reports indicate that flu activity is widespread in every state except Hawaii.

Getting the flu shot is still the best way to protect yourself and your family from the flu. But what should you not do during flu season?

Study: Flu may spread simply by breathing

flu woman sneeze

For years, conventional wisdom among flu experts has been that influenza was not an airborne virus but spread by fairly large droplets resulting from coughing or sneezing. However, a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences indicates individuals with influenza can easily transmit the virus to others by exhaling flu-laden particles that can float and contaminate the air around them for minutes and even hours. 

Mother’s loss gives birth to mission of comfort

Three years ago, when Ashley Opliger's daughter, Bridget, was stillborn at just over 24 weeks, it was a heartbreaking moment.​

But because of the hand-knitted cradle her mother had lovingly made for her first grandbaby, it served as a turning point in both of their lives.​

At just 13 ounces, Bridget could hardly be swaddled in a bulky hospital blanket.​

"So my mom took the cradle out, put her in it, and it changed everything for us," Ashley said, as she and her husband, Matt, and other family were able to hold and view their baby as they said their goodbyes.​

Is it the flu or just allergies?

Cold and flu

While flu season is in full swing in Wichita, it’s also winter allergy season — making it tougher to tell exactly what’s causing your sniffles and sneezing.

“Flu and allergies both affect the respiratory system, making it harder to breathe, but knowing what ails you can give you a better idea whether it’s time to see the doctor,” says Howard Chang, MD, medical director of the Ascension Via Christi St. Francis Emergency Department. Via Christi is part of Ascension, the largest nonprofit health system in the United States and the largest Catholic health system in the world.


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