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We can help diagnose and treat respiratory infections. Upper respiratory infections (URIs) are infections affecting the upper part of the respiratory tract including the nose, sinuses, pharynx, and larynx. They are very common infections. In the US, we see more than 3 million cases each year. Some examples of URIs are the common cold, rhinitis, sinus infections, and laryngitis. They generally include symptoms ranging from nasal congestion, sneezing, coughing, scratchy or sore throat, headache, fever, and mucus production.

 

URIs are one of the most common reasons for doctor visits, and the most common reason for missing school or work. URIs are contagious and most often caused by self-limited viral infections, although occasionally, bacterial infections may cause URIs. Most resolve in 7-10 days, but occasionally symptoms can linger.

Lower respiratory tract infections (LRTIs) are infections affecting the lower portion of the respiratory tract, including the trachea, primary bronchi, and the lungs. Symptoms of LRTIs include shortness of breath, weakness, fever, coughing, and fatigue. Common LRTIs include bronchitis, pneumonia, and bronchiolitis. Influenza or the flu can affect both the upper and lower respiratory tract. Lower respiratory tract infections are also self-limited and may require supportive medications for symptoms.

Regular hand washing, covering the face while coughing or sneezing, staying away from infected people, and avoiding sharing food or beverages with infected people can help to limit the spread of infection

When to call HouseCalls:

If you suspect you have a URI but your symptoms persist, a doctor can help identify if your URI is something more serious or is exacerbated by external conditions or an underlying medical condition. A number of conditions can resemble URIs in terms of symptoms including asthma, pneumonia, H1N1, allergic reactions, acute HIV infection and influenza, but require different treatment plans. With HouseCalls your provider will do a full evaluation, including a detailed medical history and examine you in the full context of your home environment to identify an accurate diagnosis and an effective treatment plan for you.

Generally, LRTIs tend to be more serious conditions than URIs, so if you suspect you may have a lower respiratory tract infection, don’t wait to seek treatment. Book a House Call today.

Seek emergency medical attention if:

  • Your symptoms are severe
  • You think you’ve been exposed to Corona Virus
  • You have difficulty breathing or rapid breathing
  • You have chest pain or tightness
  • You have difficulty swallowing
  • Your infection is recurring
  • You have a severe cough
  • You experience wheezing
  • Your skin turns a blue color due to lack of oxygen
We can help diagnose and treat viruses. A virus is a particle 100 times smaller than the average bacteria. Viruses reproduce, by infecting a host cell in your body, or an animal, or plant). Once inside a hosts cells, a virus will hijack that cell’s machinery in order to reproduce.

 

Viruses cause a number of infectious diseases in humans from the common cold, influenza, and warts, to more serious diseases including Corona, SARs, HIV/AIDS, Ebola, and Zika.

Vaccines are biological agents that provide immunity to specific diseases. Vaccines are the most effective method of protection against certain viruses, including measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR), Influenza, and chicken pox. For most viral infections, the course of treatment usually includes treating the symptoms of the infection while waiting for the immune system to fight the virus. Antibiotics are designed to kill bacteria and are ineffective against viruses.

HouseCalls can help diagnose and treat ear infections. An ear infection (acute otitis media) occurs when fluid builds up in the area behind the eardrum and then becomes infected. Ear infections can be internal as above or external like called Swimmer’s Ear. Ear infections are usually caused by Streptococcus bacteria, but can also be caused by viruses.

For most adults, the fluid that enters the middle ear area typically drains on its own through the eustachian tube, a narrow tube that connects the middle ear to the back of the nose and throat. In adults, the eustachian tube is angled vertically, which makes it less likely for fluid to become trapped. Children are more prone to ear infections because their eustachian tubes are angled horizontally, so fluid has a harder time draining from the middle ear.

Common symptoms of ear infections include:

  • Ear pain
  • Fever of 100℉ or above
  • Fluid drainage from the ear
  • Headache
  • Tugging at the ear
  • Temporary reduction in hearing
  • Change in balance
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Irritability and crying
  • Coughing without mucus production

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the best way to prevent ear infections in children is to make sure your child is up-to-date on all of their vaccinations and ensure that they receive a flu vaccine every year, as ear infections often occur after upper respiratory infections (URIs) including influenza and the common cold, have resolved. 

It is also recommended to avoid putting foreign objects in the ears including cotton swabs, as these can cause injuries to the ear canal which can then become infected. Additionally, exposure to environmental irritants including cigarette smoke and pollution can increase the number of colds your child contracts, which can then lead to more ear infections.

For infants, breastfeeding has been shown to provide protection from infections, including ear infections. Although most ear infections clear up on their own, they can be more serious conditions for infants and small children. Persistent ear infections can lead to more serious complications down the line including hearing problems.

Because symptoms of an ear infection can also indicate a number of other conditions, it’s important to seek medical attention in order to get an accurate diagnosis and ensure proper treatment. If you suspect your child might have an ear infection which is accompanied by a fever of over 100 degrees, don’t hesitate to book a HouseCall.  Your Health Care Provider can perform a complete, thorough examination, including a full check of your child’s ears, nose, and throat, and determine if your child’s symptoms indicate an ear infection.

After an examination, your child’s provider will provide a comprehensive treatment plan and tips for managing pain and other symptoms. Antibiotics are normally not indicated for ear infections, as most of the time, your child’s immune system will fight off the infection in time. If the doctor deems it necessary, in some cases they may prescribe antibiotics to treat bacterial ear infections, which they can send electronically to your preferred pharmacy.

If your child is suffering from symptoms of an ear infection, book a house call with a licensed primary care provider Today.

We can help diagnose and treat Strep throat. Strep throat is a bacterial infection of the throat caused by Group A Streptococcus bacteria that usually results in pain and inflammation. Strep throat is most common in children between the ages of 5 and 18 years old, but can occur in adults as well. It’s contagious, and most often spreads from person to person through coughing, sneezing, saliva, and touching open sores on the skin caused by Group A Strep.

Common symptoms of strep throat include:

  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Swollen lymph nodes on the neck
  • Swollen, red tonsils
  • Petechiae on the roof of your mouth
  • Nausea

The best way to prevent contracting strep throat is by washing your hands thoroughly and often with an antibacterial soap. You should also avoid sharing food or utensils with potentially infected people, and ensure that you cover your mouth when coughing and sneezing.

Other infectious agents and conditions can cause similar symptoms to strep throat, including but not limited to viruses, allergens, environmental irritants, and post-nasal drip. Because sore throat is a symptom of many conditions, it’s important to confirm your diagnosis with a licensed healthcare professional, in order to ensure prompt and effective treatment.

In a house call, your health care provider will perform a thorough physical exam, including a detailed medical history. If your provider  deems it necessary, she may perform a rapid strep test, which can be done in the comfort of your home by swabbing the back of your throat. In some cases, your doctor might order a throat culture in order to confirm your diagnosis. If you do have strep throat, your doctor will determine a thorough treatment plan to help you feel better and protect others from contracting your infection. If the provider deems it necessary, she may prescribe antibiotics, which can be easily e-prescribed to the pharmacy of your choice.

If you suspect you might have strep throat, request a HouseCall today.

Please be advised that HouseCalls’ providers are unable to prescribe any narcotics, opioids, and anxiety medications.

We can help diagnose and treat rashes. A rash, often called dermatitis, is an area of irritated, inflamed skin that is sometimes red, itchy, and can be painful.

There are many different types of dermatitis which can be caused by a number of different sources including allergens and irritants, skin infections, and genetic conditions. A few of the most common rashes include contact dermatitis, nummular dermatitis, atopic dermatitis, and ring worm.

Contact Dermatitis:

Contact dermatitis is inflammation of the skin resulting from contact with an allergen or irritant, typically resulting in a pink or red itchy rash. Allergic contact dermatitis is the result of an allergy to something that comes in contact with the skin. Examples of substances that can result in allergic contact dermatitis include poison ivy and other plants, fragrances and dyes, certain metals including nickel (a common metal in earrings), rubber, and preservatives in skin care and other products.

The most common example of irritant contact dermatitis is when the skin on your hands becomes dry and damaged from over-washing.

Nummular Dermatitis:

Nummular dermatitis is a skin condition characterized by coin-shaped red plaques seen on the arms, legs, hands, and trunk.

It is most common among:

  • People between the ages of 55 and 65
  • Those who live in hot, arid environments
  • People who take frequent, hot showers

Atopic Dermatitis:

Atopic dermatitis, a type of eczema, is a form of dermatitis which results in itching, scaling, swelling, and sometimes blistering of the skin. This type of eczema results from gut imbalances, food allergies, food sensitivities, yeast overgrowth, stress and asthma. Because the skin is one method the body uses to detoxify itself, rashes are often the result. Treating the underlying condition while supporting the skin is how eczema is best treated.

Chronic skin conditions such as rosacea and psoriasis are associated with dysbiosis, or gut imbalances. Removing offending foods, changing the diet, and providing appropriate healing foods and supplements along with basic lifestyle changes will go a long way to healing these conditions. 

Other rashes may be the result of bacterial, viral, or fungal infections such as ringworm and hot tub rash.

A licensed primary care provider can assess your rash, provide a diagnosis, and determine the appropriate protocol for treatment and prevention of further skin irritation. Your provider can also determine if your rash is a symptom of an undiagnosed, untreated, underlying condition, and provide a comprehensive treatment plan to address the root cause of your symptoms.

If you have a rash that concerns you book a HouseCall house Today.

At HouseCalls we can help diagnose and treat urinary tract infections. A urinary tract infection, or UTI, is an infection of the urinary system, which consists of the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra.

Common symptoms of a UTI include:

  • Pain or burning during urination
  • Frequent and/or intense urge to urinate
  • Unpleasant urine odor
  • Urine that is cloudy or red-tinged
  • Back or side pain
  • Fever
  • Fatigue

UTIs are typically caused by bacteria that is most often found in the bowel. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, certain people are at higher risk for developing urinary tract infections, including:

  • Postmenopausal women
  • Women who use certain types of birth control including     diaphragms
  • Women who are sexually active
  • People with kidney stones
  • Men with an enlarged prostates

Although certain groups of people are more prone to UTIs, there are steps everyone can take to help prevent them, including:

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, untreated UTIs can cause damage to the kidneys and other parts of the body. Also, if you’re pregnant, an untreated UTI could cause pregnancy complications including premature labor and preeclampsia. Given these risks, if you are experiencing symptoms of a UTI, it is important to seek medical attention.

A health care provider will examine you and take a detailed medical history. If your provider deems it necessary, she will test your urine by performing a urine dipstick test or a urine culture to confirm your diagnosis, and will then provide a comprehensive treatment plan for your UTI. If necessary, your provider may prescribe antibiotics to treat your infection, and can easily e-prescribe medication to your preferred pharmacy.

If you’re prone to developing multiple UTIs per year, talk to your health care provider about it. She may elect to perform additional tests or simply offer guidance for minimizing your chances of contracting repeat infections.

If you suspect you have a UTI, don’t hesitate to book a HouseCall Today.

The doctors on Heal can help diagnose and treat sprains and strains. Sprains and strains are common injuries resulting from activities such as sports, walking or running on an uneven surface, and slips and falls. They typically have similar symptoms but result from damage to different parts of the body.

A sprain occurs when a ligament (a band of tough, flexible connective tissue that connects two bones together at a joint) is stretched or torn.

A strain occurs when a muscle or tendon (an inelastic thread of strong fibrous collagen tissue attaching muscle to bone) is stretched or torn.

Common symptoms of sprains and strains include:

  • Pain or tenderness
  • Limited mobility in the affected area
  • Swelling
  • Stiffness
  • Spasms

According to the American College of Sports Medicine, treatment for sprains and strains typically follows the PRICE principle:

P – Protect the injured area

R – Restrict activity

I – Apply Ice

C – Apply compression in the form of a bandage or brace

E – Elevate the affected area

 

There are different degrees of sprains and strains, depending on the severity of the injury. First-degree sprains and strains are typically more mild, resulting in mild pain and swelling and minor tearing of the ligament, muscle, or tendon. Second-degree sprains and strains are moderate injuries, characterized by more damage to the tissues and slightly more intense pain and swelling. Third-degree injuries are the most severe, often resulting in severe pain, limited or no mobility of the affected area, unstable joints, and severe damage up to complete rupture of the ligament, muscle, or tendon.

Because of the varying degrees of sprains and strains, it’s important to seek medical attention to prevent exacerbating your injury, and to determine the appropriate course of treatment.

A health care provider can perform a thorough exam and assess the extent of your injury. Your provider will then provide you with a comprehensive treatment plan, outlining next steps for treatment, including how to best help the injury heal and manage your pain.

If your provider deems it necessary, she may write a referral for imaging or refer you to a specialist for further evaluation and treatment. If your provider determines you require imaging, your imaging order will be sent to an appropriate facility and we will help you make an appointment.

If you suspect you have a sprain or strain, book a HouseCall Today. 

Please be advised that HouseCalls is unable to prescribe any narcotics, opioids, and anxiety medications.

The doctors on Heal can help diagnose and treat muscle and joint injuries. Muscle is soft tissue containing protein filaments which make it strong and flexible and capable of producing force and motion.

Joints are the part of the body where bones are joined together.

Muscles and joints work hard to accomplish the many movements we make with our bodies every day, including walking, running, lifting, carrying, and typing. The movements bodies make involve gravity, force, and balance. With everything the human body does in a typical day, over time, muscle or joint injuries are inevitable for most people. Additionally, many people struggle with chronic, genetic and/or autoimmune conditions which affect their muscles and joints.

A number of injuries and diseases can result in damage to and pain in the muscles and joints, including but not limited to:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Bursitis
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Polymyalgia rheumatica
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Lupus
  • Dislocations
  • Sprains and strains
  • Achilles tendon injuries
  • Rotator cuff injuries
  • Tendinitis
  • Repetitive strain injury
  • Muscle spasm
  • Pulled hamstring
  • Runner’s knee
  • Tennis elbow

Treatment of muscle and joint injuries varies depending on the type, cause, and severity of the injury, but often begins with the PRICE principle to minimize pain, additional tissue damage, and assist in the healing process:

P – Protect the injured area

R – Restrict activity

I – Apply Ice

C – Apply compression in the form of a bandage or brace

E – Elevate the affected area

 

Because of the varying degrees, types, and causes of muscle and joint injuries, it’s important to seek medical attention to prevent exacerbating your injury, and to determine the appropriate course of treatment. A health care provider can perform a thorough, complete exam and assess the extent of your injury. Your provider will then provide a comprehensive treatment plan, outlining next steps for treatment, including how to best help the injury heal and manage your pain.

If your provider deems it necessary, she may order a referral for imaging or refer you to a specialist for further evaluation and treatment. If imaging is necessary, HouseCalls will send your imaging order to the appropriate facility and help you make an appointment, if necessary.

If you suspect you have a muscle or joint injury, book a HouseCalls Today.

Please be advised that HouseCalls is unable to prescribe any narcotics, opioids, and anxiety medications.