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Interview with Margarita Cilveti, Head of the Health Psychology and Sexology Unit at Vithas Xanit International Hospital.

Posted by Xanit Internacional Xanit Internacional | Posted in Xanit salud | Posted on 28-06-2019

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Sexuality is an important aspect in the lives of many men and women. Sometimes we may face difficulties or problems that affect our well-being and enjoyment or that of our relationship. In such cases, we should seek professional help from a specialist. The Neuroscience Department at Vithas Xanit has recently launched a Health Psychology and Sexology Unit to address the sexual difficulties of men and women in a comprehensive way, meeting their personal needs, always with the support and advice of the best team of neuroscience specialists.

Today, we speak with the person in charge, Margarita Cilveti, who will present us the new Unit.

 

What exactly does a Sexology Unit consist of? What issues does such specialty address?

Our Health Psychology and Sexology Unit is dedicated to sexual counselling. We start by conducting an interview in the first session to assess the problem on hand, and from there we work either with the individual or couple through exercises, tasks, psychoeducation, etc., to advance and resolve the situation.

 

What type of patients are treated in this unit? What are the most common problems? Can these problems be dealt with and if so, how? 

We mainly welcome men and women with problems related to their sexuality, relationship, identity or sexual orientation. Difficulties related to erection, ejaculation or sexual desire are frequent. We always study each case personally, since that will determine if we should work individually or with a couple.

 

Is the percentage of the population suffering from these problems big?  

In sexology, these problems are often called common difficulties because we can all be subjected to such conditions throughout our lives.

 

Are these problems diagnosed? How can they be diagnosed?

The DSM 5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) of the American Psychiatric Association includes some of these problems such as sexual dysfunctions, but from sexology point of view, we do not manage diagnostic criteria but instead we talk about common difficulties. To diagnose sex-related difficulties, the first thing to do is to acknowledge them and talk about the problems, because lack of communication due to shame is one of the main problems in addressing these difficulties.

 

It is said that there are mental illnesses that can lead to sexual malfunctions, is this true? How can mental illnesses affect sexual problems? 

Anxiety or depression disorders, especially when they extend over time and people do not seek professional help, can affect sexuality or relationship with a partner.

 

How can couples know that their sexual health is poor? And how can they improve it? 

I do not think you can talk about good or poor sexual health, each one of us and our relationships is different and precisely for that reason we offer tailor-made, personalised attention. What is clear is when something is causing discomfort or impeding the enjoyment of one’s sexuality or the relationship it may be necessary to seek the help of a professional.

 

What are some of the main problems that we are facing in relation to sexuality?

A fundamental problem in the field of sexuality is the lack of education; therefore, an important step in counselling is to provide information and to allow people to form their own ideas and seek their own answers.

If you want more information about this hospital Unit, please go to: http://www.vithas.es/Benalmadena/sala-prensa/detallenoticia?idNoticia=1912

Your health on examination: Medical check-ups

Posted by Xanit Internacional Xanit Internacional | Posted in Xanit salud | Posted on 27-06-2019

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The main aim of medical check-ups is to prevent diseases and diagnose pathologies in their initial phase when symptoms have not yet been manifested.

A check-up is the only way to know if we are as healthy as we think.

What is a medical check-up?

These preventive medical examinations (check-ups) are much more than a set of laboratory tests to confirm the existence of risk factors (for example, so-called vascular risk factors) and detect pathologies.

One of the main sources of information, which will determine in some way the content of the check-up, is the past medical history and the complete physical examination. Even if there is already a record of your medical history from the previous hospital visits, the internist will still conduct a full interview to try to conclude not only the family history that can determine the hereditary conditions but also the patient’s life habits, as well as his/her overall health conditions.

Thus, for example, smokers, or people working in certain environments, will be given functional respiratory tests — spirometry and a consultation with a specialist aimed at quitting smoking. If the internist deems it necessary, a chest x-ray will also be performed.

Those with a family history of cancer will be asked for specific laboratory analysis and digestive tests (for example, colonoscopy), urological or other tests depending on the type of tumour of the family member.

In the case of family history positive for cardiac illnesses at an early age, the check-up will be completed with a specific cardiological consultation.

Healthy advice

You could almost say that for each person we have to do a specific check-up, but for all of us, there is one factor in common: healthy lifestyle habits, which can be summarised in the following:

  • Maintain a balanced diet. Today the diet that has evidenced more health benefits is the Mediterranean diet. You can eat almost everything but in the right amount. Carbohydrates (fruits and vegetables, mainly) should account for about half of the diet; fats 35%; and proteins 15%.
  • Stay away from smoking and harmful fumes. Do not smoke, do not be in toxic environments, try not to have contact with harmful products.
  • Do physical exercise. Another important pillar, as much or more than diet is physical exercise. Doctors estimate that from 150 minutes (two and a half hours) of moderate aerobic activity per week we should start seeing the beneficial health effects.
  • Watch your state of mind. Avoid situations that have to do with anxiety, stress or irritability. Also, avoid social isolation. The human beings are sociable and their isolation deteriorates physical and psychological abilities.
  • If you feel general malaise or have doubts about your health, go to your doctor: get a check-up.

Have you decided to quit smoking in 2019? Here are 5 tips that will make this challenge much easier

Posted by Xanit Internacional Xanit Internacional | Posted in Xanit salud | Posted on 26-06-2019

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The arrival of the New Year traditionally brings along a list of New Year’s resolutions and new goals to be achieved, and usually on the top of the list for many there is a resolution to stop smoking. The advantages of doing so are many, the first being prevention of lung cancer, given that 90% of cases diagnosed are due to smoking.

Last year 28,645 new cases of lung cancer were diagnosed in Spain. This type of cancer has become the third most frequent in Spain and for that reason, Vithas Xanit International Hospital, part of the Vithas health group, insist on the importance of early detection of this disease, as well as raising awareness among the population about the dangers of smoking.

Today we want to help all of you who have set as a challenge for 2019 to quit smoking by offering you these simple tips to make your decision much more manageable.

  1. Before you lit a cigarette, ask yourself, “Why do I smoke?”If you pause to think about it, you will discover that smoking is not about the actual physical necessity, but because of the habit acquired.
  2. List the reasons why you continue to smoke, and why you should quit, you will be surprised by the difference in pros and cons. This list can also help you in moments of weakness when you want to smoke a cigarette again. You can go back to your list and remember the reasons why you are quitting this deadly habit.
  3. Set short-term goals and replace smoking with healthier habits that you should gradually include in your life. Starting exercise (better if in a group), drinking plenty of fluids, and a diet rich in fruit and vegetables can help quit smoking.
  4. Seeking help is also necessary, and we are not just talking about professional advice, but about support from the people around you, your friends, colleagues and family members. It is crucial that family and friends know about your decision to quit smoking so that they can be part of your goal, for this will encourage you not to lit a cigarette in front of them.
  5. If you smoke more than 10 cigarettes a day, it is also recommended to seek help from a specialist who will provide you with adequate medical treatment, since 70% of smokers in the hands of specialists manage to quit smoking, limiting the percentage to only 5% of those who decide to stop smoking without help.

 

At Vithas Xanit, we have a team of pulmonologists who provide patients with personalised care to stop smoking, with specially designed sessions where we offer customised treatments adapted to the characteristics and needs of the patient.

The Three Wise Men have visited our hospital!!!!

Posted by Xanit Internacional Xanit Internacional | Posted in Various | Posted on 26-06-2019

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On Friday, the 4th of January, Vithas Xanit International Hospital had a visit from the Three Wise Men, much to children amusement, both those who were hospitalised and those who at the time were found in the Paediatric Emergency Room and the Paediatric Outpatient Clinics.

The Three Kings or the Three Wise Men, further to visiting the hospitalised children, marked the Vithas Family Day along with the children of the hospital’s staff, with a guided tour of the hospital that ended in the Congress Hall where all the children present received a gift.

Here are a few photos from the visit.

Technology: Today we look into non-invasive colonoscopy

Posted by Xanit Internacional Xanit Internacional | Posted in Gastroenterology | Posted on 21-06-2019

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Colonoscopy is one of the most common tests performed within the Gastroenterology Department. Its main goal is to explore for polyps or cancer in the large intestine. Polyps are benign growths that arise in the inner lining of the intestine. A small part of the polyps can grow and then become cancer.

To learn more about this test, today we want to explain exactly what a virtual colonoscopy consists of.…

 

What is virtual colonoscopy?

This virtual colonoscopy uses special X-ray equipment to examine the large intestine to identify cancer and growths called polyps.

 

What do we diagnose with colonoscopy?

It is used to explore for polyps or cancer in the large intestine in order to find such growths at an early stage so that they can be removed before cancer has the chance to develop.

People who are at increased risk for this disease or have a family history of colon cancer may begin screening at age 40 or younger and may undergo screening at shorter intervals (for example, having a colonoscopy every five years). Risk factors associated with the disease include a history of polyps or a family history of colon cancer.

 

How is it carried out?

During the examination, a small flexible tube is inserted into the rectum for a short distance so that it can be inflated with gas while CT images of the colon and rectum are taken.

 

What benefits does it have?

This minimally invasive test provides 2-D and 3-D images that can clearly describe numerous polyps and other lesions, as it provides more detailed images, also reaching the full length of the colon.

This technique significantly reduces the risk of colon perforation that can occur with conventional colonoscopy, becoming an excellent alternative for patients with clinical factors that increase the risk of complications from colonoscopy.

Elderly patients, especially those who are weak or sick, will tolerate CT colonography better than a conventional colonoscopy and it may also be useful when colonoscopy cannot be performed because the intestine is blocked or reduced for some reason.

This technique can detect abnormalities outside the colon, including malignant conditions in their early stages in other organs and potentially dangerous conditions.

Non-invasive colonoscopy is well tolerated as there is no need for sedatives or painkillers and there are no traces of radiation left in the patient’s body and there are usually no immediate side effects.

Hair transplant in Spain

Posted by Xanit Internacional Xanit Internacional | Posted in Xanit salud | Posted on 20-06-2019

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Hair transplant is the technique that consists in extracting hair, follicle by follicle, from an area of the head (which is the donor zone and is usually the back of the head) to be subsequently implanted in the area affected with alopecia (i.e. the receiving area that we want to repopulate). The most common cause of hair loss is androgenetic alopecia, that is, hair loss due to genetic causes (heredity) and as a consequence of the action of testosterone (which is the male hormone).

Today we delve into this technique with Dr Miguel Valenzuela, the latest addition to the Herrera Clinic for this type of interventions, serving patients throughout Vithas Costa del Sol hospitals, all equipped with the state-of-the-art technology, professional staff and means necessary to ensure patients’ satisfaction with the best aesthetic results.

Techniques

There are two techniques for capillary graft: FUE (“Follicular Unit Extraction”, e.g. removal of follicles one by one) and FUSS (also called “Strip”, where a piece of skin is removed from the scalp, then the follicles are sectioned and extracted).

The FUSS technique leaves a scar that occupies the entire back of the head (ear to ear), due to which this technique is less performed.

The results of both techniques are similar, however, most patients decide on the FUE since there is no scar left. Furthermore, these techniques do not require general anaesthesia, the capillary micrograft is performed under local anaesthesia and is done on an outpatient basis. There is no need for the patient’s hospitalisation either.

Dr Miguel Valenzuela explains how the use of this technique (FUE) allows us to obtain more natural results and avoids the scarring that was previously left on the back of the head. After the transplant, there are only a few small crusts left, from the extraction of the hair, which fall off within 15 days. Once the procedure is performed, the patient only has to wait four days to wash the transplanted hair, and then use a mild neutral shampoo, and avoid rubbing the hair for a couple of weeks. For the FUE technique, the follicles are removed from the neck and then transplanted, hair by hair, to the front of the head or where the bald patches are. This intervention is performed in the operating theatre and, depending on the follicles to be removed, and the hair to be transplanted, lasts between 5 and 8 hours.

This type of hair transplant has shown high success rates, without graft rejection since the hairs transplanted are from the same patient.

The good transplantation results are not immediately perceived, however, are guaranteed. Transplanted hair falls out during the first weeks after surgery, but the root and the cells in the follicle begin to grow from the 3rd month and in less than a year hair growth is definitive. The hair obtained with this technique is permanent although, of course, the hair ages at the same rate as the rest of our body.

Treatment

The surgery lasts approximately 5 to 8 hours, depending on the number of units to be implanted. Usually, the patient spends the first part of the surgery sleeping (the extraction phase), and then during implantation may be watching movies or listening to music, as he is conscious at all times. Usually, one capillary graft session is sufficient, however, if the alopecia zone is big, and the donor zone is reduced, it is necessary to perform two surgeries 3 to 6 months apart, to distribute the extraction between the two surgeries and not damage the donor area.

After transplantation there is no chance of losing hair again, transplanted hair does not fall out any more. It is important to start taking finasteride and use minoxidil after transplantation to prevent the patient’s own, non-transplanted hair from falling out.

Hair transplant abroad

The main reason why people decide to undergo such an intervention outside Spain is money. There are countries where the government subsidises part of the surgery cost to attract patients.

However, there are many risks involved, such as the lack of sanitary controls in the clinics, the transplant not being done by a doctor but a member of staff who sometimes is not even sanitary, the possibility of infection or the lack of follow-up after transplantation.

Another common problem in these countries is that in order to implant the number of follicular units they advertise, they often cut off the follicular units, with the great risk of damaging them.

In Spain, there are excellent healthcare professionals and the price of transplantation is very reasonable, besides having the quality guarantees of the Spanish Health System, which is undoubtedly one of the best in the world.

Hip prosthesis in elderly patients

Posted by Xanit Internacional Xanit Internacional | Posted in Xanit salud | Posted on 19-06-2019

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A hip prosthesis is an implant that replaces a malfunctioning hip joint, with traumatic or degenerative pathology.

In both cases, patients undergoing hip prosthesis are mainly over the age of 60. After implantation of a hip prosthesis, the pain is alleviated, thus improving the quality of patient’s life. It also increases the patient’s autonomy. The patient can practically have a normal life, including doing sports activities.

 

Causes

Arthrosis is one of the causes of dysfunctional loss for which the placement of a prosthesis is indicated. Also in cases of fractures of the femur neck. On the other hand, there are situations in younger people where there is insufficient blood supply and hip necrosis occurs, where the placement of a prosthesis may be indicated. If the patient decides to undergo surgery, the process consists of a very common and systematised surgical procedure, so the possible complications are very low.

The rate of infection and thromboembolism are less than 0.5%. The probability of dislocation is also very low.

 

Recovery

After implantation of the prosthesis, the patient starts with physiotherapy, and on the second postoperative day, can sit down in a chair and start walking with crutches. The patient is discharged on the 5th post-op day with the autonomy to walk with crutches or walker.

Stitches are removed two weeks after the surgery, and a month later, the patient can have a practically normal life. The need for support will depend on the degree of autonomy that the patient had before the placement of the prosthesis. If the patient is autonomous, he will not need special help.

When indicated, a hip prosthesis is a magnificent solution to improve the quality of life of the patient at low risk. We highly recommend it if the patient fits the clinical criteria required.