Category Archive: Blog

Where To Take Your Sick Child For Care

Posted by on February 6, 2019

woman holding sick child in lap - where to take your sick child for care Your toddler is running a fever and acting extra fussy… Do you rush to the emergency room, or simply set an appointment with the pediatrician for next week? How about a trip to the local urgent care center? Determining what level of care your little one needs is often a difficult and confusing task. While your first step should always be a call to your pediatrician or an after-hours answering service to discuss symptoms, below, we offer some general guidelines for when and where to take your sick child for care.

When To Head Straight To The ER

A visit to the emergency room should be reserved for true medical emergencies, such as trauma, surgical procedures, and life-threatening situations.

Call 911 or go right to the ER if your child:

  • is under 2 months old and has a fever of 100.4 degrees F or higher
  • suffered a serious head or eye injury
  • suffered a serious burn or large cut
  • had a seizure
  • has a broken bone with visible swelling
  • shows signs of dehydration (dry lips and mouth, absence of urination for more than 12 hours, lethargy and confusion)
  • is having trouble breathing
  • ingested a poison, drug, or unknown substance

When To Use An Urgent Care

If your child is able to walk, talk, play and interact, it’s most likely not a medical emergency. For minor injuries and illnesses that require immediate attention, an urgent care center is a time- and cost-saving alternative to the ER.

Urgent care centers are able to treat a wide range of non life-threatening injuries and illnesses, and offer extended evening and weekend hours, usually with X-rays and lab testing on-site. Average waits are under an hour and the cost per visit is much less than the ER.

Common children’s medical issues that can be treated by an urgent care include:

  • Coughs/Stuffy Nose
  • Strep throat
  • Minor Cuts and Burns
  • Common Cold
  • The Flu
  • Pink Eye
  • Minor Broken Bones and Sprains
  • Ear Infections
  • Rashes
  • Asthma
  • Vomiting/Diarrhea

It’s also a good idea to call the urgent care ahead of your visit to verify what ages and conditions they treat. Based on your child’s symptoms, the clinic may direct you to the ER.

Now you know the basics of where to take your sick child for care. We’re here for you when an urgent care is the best choice.

Evaluating Your Low Back Pain

Posted by on January 17, 2019

Almost every adult will deal with low back pain at some point in their life. In fact, it’s one of the most common reasons people head to the doctor. While most cases of acute low back pain will go away without intervention, a visit to an urgent care center can help rule out more serious conditions and ensure you’re on the quickest road to feeling better.

Symptoms of Low Back Pain:

  • Muscle aches in lower spinal region
  • Shooting or stabbing pain
  • Pain that radiates down your leg
  • Pain that worsens with bending, lifting, standing or walking
  • Pain that improves with reclining

If you’re suffering from the symptoms above, head into our clinic whenever it’s convenient for you. Our providers can review your medical history and lifestyle for signs of systemic diseases, social and psychological stresses, and risk factors that may be contributing to your pain. We will perform a comprehensive physical exam to inspect the back, assess areas of tenderness, and evaluate your spinal mobility. Through this medical evaluation, we can help narrow down the cause of your low back pain and develop an appropriate treatment plan. Some common causes of lower back pain include:

Muscle and Ligament Strains

Lifting a heavy object or twisting suddenly can strain the muscles in your back or the ligaments of your spine and cause diffuse back pain.

Herniated Disc

The intervertebral discs that act as cushions in your spin can become compressed and bulge outward (herniation) or rupture, causing dull or sharp shooting low back pain.

Compression Fracture

Commonly caused by osteoporosis, a spinal compression fracture occurs when a bone in the spine collapses, leading to debilitating back pain.

Osteoarthritis (spondylosis)

A breakdown of the cartilage of the joints and discs in the lower back can make movement difficult and painful.

Skeletal irregularities

Scoliosis, a condition in which your spine curves to the side, can lead to back pain later in life.

Visit our clinic today to better understand your lower back pain. Our talented and friendly medical team can quickly evaluate your symptoms, and determine a treatment plan to help you find relief. Initial treatment for low back pain may include hot or cold packs, over-the-counter NSAIDs, cortisone injections, and physical therapy. Integrative medicines such as acupuncture, chiropractic care, yoga and massage may be helpful.

Flu Prevention and Treatment Techniques You Need to Know

Posted by on October 5, 2018

mug on bedside table - flu prevention and treatmentFall is here, and flu season won’t be far behind. Learn the best flu prevention methods, and when it’s time to see a doctor.

Flu is a contagious respiratory illness that can lead to serious complications such as pneumonia and even death. In fact, flu-related illnesses claimed over 80,000 lives just last year! Here’s how to protect yourself and your family this flu season.

Flu Prevention

Flu viruses occur seasonally (October through May) and spread through droplets in the air when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk. Follow these simple preventative steps to avoid falling ill.

    • The most effective way to fight the flu is to get vaccinated. Flu vaccinations save lives, and the CDC recommends that everyone ages 6 months and older get an annual flu vaccine. The vaccine can lessen the severity of an illness –if not prevent it all together– and reduce your risk of serious complications.
    • Practice good hygiene. Wash your hands often, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and moth, and disinfect surfaces.
    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. While this step isn’t always possible, it’s worth noting!

Flu Treatment

A sudden onset of fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, runny or stuffy nose, headache and fatigue? You might have the flu. Here’s how to handle it.

See a doctor ASAP. Your doctor can run a rapid flu test and if indicated, prescribe an antiviral medication proven to lessen the severity and duration of your illness. When taken promptly, antiviral drugs can reduce the time you are sick by 1-2 days and also prevent serious complications, such as pneumonia.

Help stop the spread of flu. If you are experiencing flu-like symptoms, limit contact with other people and stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except for necessities and to get medical care. When you sneeze and cough, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue, then throw the tissue out and wash your hands.

We treat cold and flu on a walk-in basis, at an affordable price. Visit our clinic today to feel better faster.

Employee Flu Shot Clinics Now Available!

Posted by on September 16, 2018

Preventing the spread of flu around your office is easy with Physicians Urgent Care employee flu shot clinics!

  1. Pick a day and a PUC location that works for your team
  2. Contact us at jodis@pucclinic.com to schedule
  3. Show up, get a shot & leave with protection from this year’s flu virus

When you schedule a flu shot clinic at PUC, you are providing your employees the easiest and quickest way to get vaccinated – all they have to do is show up!

Available at:

Brentwood
700 Old Hickory Blvd, #207
Brentwood, TN 37027

Berry Farms
5021 Hughes Crossing Suite 165
Franklin, TN 37064

Franklin
155 Covey Drive, #100
Franklin, Tennessee 37067

Back to School: Common Classroom Illnesses

Posted by on August 10, 2018

common classroom illnessesThe start of the school year brings with it new teachers, full backpacks, and plenty of homework. Unfortunately, it also brings an increased risk of illness for your children. Kids in school spend more time indoors, in close proximity to one another, sharing supplies, toys, — and infections. Learn about the common classroom illnesses that your kids might come home with this school year, and how best to care for them.

Pinkeye (conjunctivitis)

Pinkeye –or conjunctivitis– is one of the most common eye infections in children. It is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the transparent membrane that lines the eyelid and covers the white of the eyeball. Pinkeye is most often the result of a virus, and can be very contagious; outbreaks sweep through schools and playgrounds.

Pinkeye symptoms include the hallmark pink or red appearance of the eye, along with eye itchiness, pain, swelling, and/or a feeling of sand in the eye. Discharge from the eye and tearing are also common. If you suspect your child has pinkeye, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent the spread of the infection to others, and help ease symptoms. Visit our clinic at the first signs of symptoms of pinkeye.

Flu

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness that occurs seasonally, usually from October through May (the bulk of the school year.) The flu is spread through tiny droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk. Symptoms come on suddenly, can be mild to severe, and include fever, body aches, decreased appetite, headache, and severe exhaustion. The illness can lead to serious complications, especially in young children. If your little one develops symptoms, head into our clinic for a proper diagnosis and fast treatment.

To prevent flu, make sure your family receives the annual flu vaccine and teach your child good hygiene habits such as covering coughs and sneezes and frequent hand-washing.

Common Cold

The common cold is usually the result of rhinoviruses. These viruses spread through the air and close personal contact, and kids are more susceptible than adults. If your child comes down with a cold, they’ll likely be sneezy, and suffering from a runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, body aches, and a headache. They may also develop a mild fever. There is no cure for a cold. Just make sure your little one gets some rest and drinks plenty of fluids.

Strep Throat

Strep throat is a contagious infection of the throat and tonsils caused by group A streptococcus bacteria. These bacteria spread easily through airborne droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Kids can get strep by breathing in these droplets, touching a surface where they are present, or by sharing food or drinks with someone who is sick.

Signs of strep include a sore and scratchy throat, difficulty swallowing, headache and fever. Your child’s tonsils may appear red and swollen, sometimes with white patches, along with tiny red spots at the back of the mouth and swollen lymph nodes in the front of the neck. If your child is suffering from any symptoms that may indicate strep, it’s important to see a medical provider. Untreated strep throat can cause serious complications such as kidney inflammation and rheumatic fever.

As a parent, it’s difficult to see your child not feeling well. But, childhood illnesses are inevitable. Teach your kids healthy habits, keep track of their symptoms, and remember that our medical team is here to care for your family!

4 Things You Should Know About Hives

Posted by on June 1, 2018

Hives

Summer is here! Finally, you can enjoy long hours of sunlight, green grass, lush trees, swimming and BBQs. Unfortunately, it’s almost impossible to enjoy anything if you’re dealing with a pesky summer illness–like hives.

Hives are a common (and annoying) health condition that many of us find perplexing.

What are they? What causes them? Why do some people get them and others don’t?

Keep reading for some key information about hives (also known as urticaria).

What Are Hives?

Hives–or urticaria–is a skin reaction that results in raised, red welts or bumps. These welts can often be itchy and irritated. Sometimes, they burn or sting.

Urticaria can appear as a single welt or several welts in a patch, forming what is known as a plaque. These itchy welts can last anywhere from 6-12 hours, but they often disappear sooner.

Hives Are Common During The Summer

Believe it or not, there is a form of hives that occurs as a response to a body’s own sweat.

This condition, cholinergic urticaria, is sometimes known as heat bumps. Cholinergic urticaria occurs as a reaction to the immunoglobulin released in sweat during exercise or a raise in body temperature.

Because we spend more time outside in the heat during summer, cases of heat-related urticaria are more common during the summer months.

Urticaria can be caused by more than sweating, however.

Many people have allergies to shellfish, and break out in itchy, red welts if they consume shrimp, crab, oysters, lobster or scallops. Many of us consume more seafood during the summer, especially if we go on vacation to tropical or beach locales.  

It’s important to be aware of shellfish ingredients at any new restaurant, picnic or cookout, no matter the time of year.

Other causes of hives?

  • Medications
  • Allergens (pollen, pet dander, latex)
  • Tight clothing
  • Underlying medical conditions
  • Alcohol

Talk to your doctor about underlying health conditions that may be causing your hive outbreak if you can’t figure out a culprit.

Hives Can Appear Anywhere On The Body

Many people think urticaria can only appear on the face, neck and chest.

In fact, it can appear anywhere on the body. Cases of urticaria have been reported on the feet, hands, legs and back. It’s important to be aware of your hives outbreak, even if the welts pop up on unusual parts of the body.

When Should You See A Doctor About Your Hives?

Urticaria generally subsides within a few hours and leave no skin abrasions or marks behind.

However, you should see a medical professional for urticaria that last more than a few days. Similarly, hives that appear as the result of an allergic reaction should be monitored closely. Visit your doctor immediately if you notice your breathing becomeing heavier or labored after a hives breakout.

Our four Middle Tennessee Physicians Urgent Care locations are open seven days a week to care for you should you experience any summertime illness.

West Nashville –  On Charlotte Pike, in front of the Nashville West Shopping Center

Brentwood –  Off Old Hickory Blvd, near Firebirds and the Well Coffee Shop

Berry Farms – Located off the Goose Creek Bypass in the Berry Farms Town Center, just down from Publix.

Franklin – On the corner of Route 96 & Carothers Parkway in front of Williamson County Medical Center.

 

Build Your Immune System For Winter

Posted by on January 16, 2018

immune system

Winter is here, and for many of us, it’s a time of endless colds, coughing, and flu-like misery.

We’ve covered the flu in detail here on our blog, but this week we decided to tackle some easy ways to keep your immune system strong.

1. Stop Pulling All-Nighters

Sleep: you need it.

Continued sleep loss takes a toll on your immune system and leaves you more susceptible to illness.

Studies show that lack of adequate sleep or lack of high-quality sleep can negatively impact your body’s ability to fight illness. In fact, during a good night’s sleep, your body produces proteins called cytokines that you need when you have an illness or infection. If you aren’t sleeping enough, you can’t produce these important proteins.

Shoot for 7-8 hours of sleep per night.

2. Keep Stress Under Control

Stress is detrimental to your immune system. In study after study, stress is linked to infection and illness. Over time, chronic stress suppresses the body’s immune system and has even been linked to several serious illnesses.

It’s easy to talk about the importance of stress control. It’s another thing to actually do it.

Most researchers agree that regular exercise has a variety of stress-relieving properties. Exercise improves cardiovascular performance. It also releases endorphins that help control the stress response.

It’s also important to indulge in your own personal stress-relief. Maybe you enjoy crafting, working on your car or gardening. Whatever your hobby is, it’s important to make time for it.

3. Wash Your Hands Regularly

Winter time sees an uptick in colds and other illnesses because we’re spending more time indoors–where germs are abundant. You might not be able to avoid staying inside more when it’s cold, but you can control how often you wash your hands.

Make sure you’re washing your hands with antibacterial soap regularly throughout the day. This is especially important if you work in a school or office in close proximity to other people.

If you can’t wash your hands with soap and water regularly, invest in an antibacterial hand sanitizer that is at least 60% alcohol.

This will help you cut down on the amount of germs in your vicinity throughout the day.

If you do find yourself suffering from a seasonal illness or infection, it’s important to have a trusted urgent care clinic nearby.

Physicians Urgent Care is proud to be a trusted provider of urgent care services for the Nashville area and beyond.

Find a Physicians Urgent Care location near you or contact us at 615-472-1550 to learn more about our services.

Flu Season 2018: What You Need to Know

Posted by on January 11, 2018

This year’s flu season is gearing up to be one of the worst, according to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and the Tennessee Department of Health.  All of our Middle Tennessee Physicians Urgent Care clinics have seen many positive flu tests in the last few weeks, and we wanted to share some helpful information with you about how this year’s flu season is unique.

Here are 4 things you should know about the 2018 Flu Season:

1. A bad flu season for Australia means we will likely have a bad flu season. 

We have already seen that flu is bad from the number of sick patients coming to our clinics, however officials tell us it may continue to get worse.  Health officials use information from Australia’s flu season, which runs from May to October, to predict trends for the American flu season, which runs from October until May.  Australia had a record high number of confirmed flu cases for their season, and the H3N2 influenza A subtype that was most prevalent was especially nasty with more severe symptoms.   Flu season in the US peaks from December to February, so we are just now hitting the worst of the season.

2. People die every year from the flu, and this year is no different. 

Tennessee has already experienced four flu-related deaths this flu season, including children and a pregnant woman.  Children under 5 and the elderly are most at risk of death from the flu, however it is recommended that everyone who is able get a flu shot.  Remember it takes about two weeks for your body to build up immunity to the virus after vaccination, so if you haven’t gotten a flu shot, get one today!

3.    This year’s flu shot is likely to be less effective than usual, but you should still get one.

We won’t know how effective the shot is until the flu season is over, but Australia’s shot was found to be less effective than usual.  Even though the vaccine is not a guaranteed protection from all flu-like illnesses, it does offer some protection.  Studies have also found that the flu shot will lessen the course and severity of the disease should you get it and could reduce the risk of death in children who get the flu. 

4.    Basic health and hand hygiene really make a difference in preventing the spread of the flu.

Simple things like staying away from sick people, avoiding touching your face, washing your hands, and cleaning commonly touched surfaces like phones, grocery carts and door handles really help to reduce the spread of germs. If you are sick with flu, stay home from work or school to prevent spreading flu to others.  You can purchase masks from any local pharmacy if someone in your home has the flu.

The most common symptoms of this year’s flu are moderate-to-high fever (although not everyone with the flu will run a fever), sore throat, shaking chills, severe muscle or body aches, headache, stuffy and runny nose and profound fatigue. 

If you experience these symptoms head to one of our four Middle Tennessee Physicians Urgent Care locations to get appropriately diagnosed and treated.  Locally owned and operated by ER physicians – we pride ourselves on excellent care, given efficiently!  

West Nashville –  On Charlotte Pike, in front of the Nashville West Shopping Center

Brentwood –  Off Old Hickory Blvd, near Firebirds and the Well Coffee Shop

Berry Farms – Located off the Goose Creek Bypass in the Berry Farms Town Center, just down from Publix.

Franklin – On the corner of Route 96 & Carothers Parkway in front of Williamson County Medical Center.

 

For more flu information, check out the following links:

https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/season/flu-season-2017-2018.htm

https://www.acsh.org/news/2018/01/02/some-bad-flu-news-h3n2-major-player-year-12350

http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1714916?query=featured_home&

 

Surviving Fall Allergy Season: Are You Prepared?

Posted by on November 13, 2017

fall allergy season

The leaves are changing, the temperatures are dropping, the holidays are right around the corner…and, with the same punctuality of the falling leaves, you’ve started sneezing.

If the fall allergy season has got you down, it’s time to do something about it. The first step to managing your autumn allergies is determining what is triggering your symptoms. From there, you can create a strategy for surviving until winter.

What Are Common Fall Allergy Symptoms?

Fall allergies often show up in the same way as spring and summer attacks. Watering eyes, a stuffy or runny nose and sneezing are just a few signs you are suffering from an allergy attack. If you seem to have an endless cold that is triggered by going outdoors, your symptoms are likely allergy related.

What Causes Fall Allergies

The tree pollen may have calmed down, but that doesn’t mean you can expect to be allergy-free.

On the contrary, these three common fall allergies can create problems for your eyes and throat.

Mold: Outdoor molds tend to thrive after the first frost of the year, living in all manner of places outside. Mold can be found in soil and leaves, but are also airborne.

Ragweed: A full 75 percent of people who suffer from springtime allergies are also sensitive to ragweed. This clever allergen can travel hundreds of miles in the wind.

Dust Mites: Dust mites thrive in the fall because as they come alive in the summer, they set up shop in your heat ducts. The first time you fire up your heater in the fall, they make their way into your home.

How to Avoid Fall Allergy Season Triggers

While allergens are too small to be seen, there are some ways to avoid them. Clean your air ducts inside before turning on the heat and remove all dead and dying leaves from your yard as soon as possible. You may also find it helpful to plant cover crops in your yard that stop ragweed from thriving. Dry your clothes inside instead of hanging them outside on a clothesline and wear a face mask when you’re raking leaves.

Have the fall allergy blues? There’s no reason to suffer! With these helpful tips and some over-the-counter allergy relief, you can enjoy pumpkin pie season with the best of them.

If over-the-counter remedies just aren’t doing the trick, it might be time to visit the doctor.

Physicians Urgent Care can help you battle your fall allergies and get back to enjoying this beautiful season. Visit one of our locations today (no appointment necessary) and get the care you deserve.

You (and your allergies) will be glad you did.

How to Prevent Eye Injuries at Home

Posted by on October 6, 2017

In keeping with Eye Injury Prevention Month, it seems only fitting to take a closer look at several ways to prevent damaging eye injuries at home. According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, almost 50 percent of all injuries occur in or near the home. Unfortunately, the most severe injuries can lead to permanent eye damage. This is why it is so important for you to understand the various ways to prevent such injuries from occurring.

Proper Use of Chemicals

Many household cleaners contain chemicals that can be extremely dangerous if they come in contact with your eyes. It is important to read the labels for all types of cleaners prior to using them. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions and never mix chemicals together. Always store cleaners out of children’s reach, such as on a high shelf. This is true even if you do not have children, since children may still visit your home. When required, be sure to keep your safety goggles on while using the chemicals.

Prevent Accidental Falls

Accidental falls and slips are one of the leading causes of eye injuries, especially among seniors. You can help to minimize the risk of these accidents with some minor adjustments. First, be sure to secure or remove all of the rugs and carpets in the home. Secondly, make sure all areas, including stairways, are well-lit and free from clutter. Finally, you should secure padding on any sharp edges around the house, such as on a table or countertop.

Protect Your Eyes

Be sure to wear safety goggles whenever you are working on a project around the home. The American Society for Ocular Trauma, along with the American Academy of Ophthalmology, recommend the use of safety goggles approved by ANSI (American National Standards Institute). In fact, these organizations recommend that every household have at least one pair. When worn, these prevent debris from flying into the eye area and causing severe damage.

Preventative measures can help to reduce the risk of eye injury, but accidents can still occur. If chemicals come in contact with your eyes, it is important to flush the eye out with water as soon as possible. It is best to have any eye injury treated by a medical professional because waiting to seek treatment could cause extensive damage. Contact Physicians Urgent Care today if any type of accident causing injury to the eye occurs or if you would like more information about preventative eye care solutions.