FastMed Blog

Yeast Infections

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 Yeast infections

Yeast infections aren’t just a concern for women. We all have small amounts of Candida (the type of yeast that causes this infection) in our bodies, but an overgrowth of this yeast may result in an uncomfortable infection. These fungal infections can be found on your skin, genitals, throat, mouth, and even in your blood. In fact, some forms of diaper rash are actually caused by yeast infections.

A yeast infection is a more specific term for candidiasis, the fungal infection that results from too much Candida in the body. If the infection occurs in the mouth or throat, it is commonly called thrush. If it is located in the genitals, it is known as a yeast infection. And if the yeast infection enters the bloodstream, it is called invasive candidiasis. The symptoms, testing, and risk factors vary depending on where the yeast infection is located.

Thrush

Thrush is an overgrowth of Candida in the mouth, throat, or esophagus. It is most commonly found in the very young (babies less than one month old), the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems. Candida organisms thrive in warm, moist places like the mouth, so people who wear dentures may be more likely to get thrush. Cancer patients often undergo treatments that weaken the immune system, so they are also more susceptible to thrush. It is rarely found in healthy adults.

The telltale symptom of thrush is white patches on the tongue and in the mouth. Your mouth may appear red, and you might have soreness and difficulty swallowing. Oral thrush can also cause cracking at the corners of the mouth. It is usually diagnosed based on your symptoms. The doctor may perform a cell culture, but a positive result alone wouldn’t be enough for a diagnosis, as some levels of Candida are found in every human mouth. Once diagnosed, thrush is easily treated with prescription antifungal medication.

Genital Yeast Infection

Nearly 75% of women will get at least one yeast infection in their lifetime. Changes in hormonal balance or vaginal acidity can cause Candida to multiply, resulting in a yeast infection. Pregnant women or those taking hormone therapy are more at risk due to higher estrogen levels. Diabetes or HIV can also increase your risk. Although it is rarer, men can get yeast infections, particularly if they are not circumcised. Symptoms of a yeast infection in men include a red rash on the penis and an itching or burning sensation on the head of the penis.

Vaginal yeast infections can cause extreme itchiness, soreness, and redness in the genital region. Normal vaginal discharge is transparent or cloudy white, but a yeast infection can cause thick, white discharge with a cottage cheese-like consistency. Sexual intercourse may be painful, and if you believe you might have a yeast infection, you should refrain from sex until you’ve seen a doctor, as yeast infections can be passed between sexual partners.

A genital yeast infection is diagnosed via a pelvic exam and cell culture. A sample of vaginal secretions may be examined to see if an abnormally high number of Candida organisms are present. Some symptoms of a yeast infection are similar to those of a urinary tract infection or an STD, so you shouldn’t self-diagnose. Although over-the-counter treatments are available, studies show that two-thirds of women who buy these medicines don’t actually have a yeast infection. If you use this medication when you don’t have a yeast infection, the yeast can become resistant to it, making it much more difficult to treat if you do get an infection. Once the doctor confirms the diagnosis, he will suggest some type of antifungal treatment. This can be a cream, tablet, ointment, or suppository.

Invasive Candidiasis

Although Candida is prevalent in the human body, it should not be in the bloodstream. When Candida enters the bloodstream, it can then spread to other parts of the body, causing an infection. Like oral candidiasis, this infection is rare in adults without risk factors. People who are most at risk include intensive care unit patients, surgical patients, people with a catheter, very low birth weight infants (under 2.2 pounds), and people with weakened immune systems (such as HIV/AIDS patients or people undergoing cancer treatments). This infection is most often seen in people who are or have recently been hospitalized.

Symptoms of invasive candidiasis depend on where the infection has spread in the body. The most common symptoms are fever and chills that do not improve after treatment with antibiotics. It is diagnosed through a blood culture, and treatment requires several weeks of oral or intravenous antifungal medication. This is a very serious condition that can lead to organ failure and even death if untreated.

A yeast infection of any kind – oral, genital, or invasive – is not something to be taken lightly. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed here, go to your local FastMed Urgent Care so a health care provider can examine you and provide the correct diagnosis and treatment.


  

Resources

Candidiasis, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Candidiasis (Yeast Infection), WebMD

Vaginal Infections, Student Health Services UC San Diego

Vaginal Yeast Infections Fact Sheet, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Select NC FastMed Clinics Offer Sports Physicals Promotion

0 Comment(s) | | by Reuel Heyden |

Get in the Game!

FastMed March Spring 2015 Sports Physicals Promotion

All FastMed Urgent Care clinics offer sports physical examinations, and from February 23 through March 31, 2015, select North Carolina FastMed locations will be offering a $15 FastMed sports physical voucher! 

Click here for the $15 FastMed sports physical voucher for the following participating locations:

FastMed asks student athletes to bring the following information to complete the participation physical evaluation or PPE:

  • Current immunization records - Immunization record card with most recent vaccines, dates given, and provider
  • Family health history – Any chronic medical illnesses such as diabetes, asthma, heart arrhythmia or murmurs, epilepsy, kidney problems, or seizures that may impact sports participation
  • Injury history - Prior personal injuries including surgeries or hospitalization, concussions, fractured or broken bones, repeated swelling joints or dislocations
  • Medications list – Any current medications
  • Corrective lenses – Corrective lenses for eyes
  • Exam Form - A copy of the official NCHSAA Pre-participation Sports Physical Medical Examination Form. To download the form, click here
  • A Parent - Minors must be accompanied by an adult chaperone or guardian and have parental/guardian permission

All of FastMed’s urgent care clinics provide physical examinations 365 days year, 8am to 8pm Monday through Friday, and 8am to 4pm Saturday and Sunday. To expedite receiving your physical exam, FastMed offers online check-in to help reduce potential wait time, click here for FastMed’s ZipPass check-in.

Winter Weather Advisory - North Carolina - Feb 27

0 Comment(s) | | by Reuel Heyden |

WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY
NORTH CAROLINA FASTMED CLOSURES AND DELAYS
FEBRUARY 27


Visit this page for up-to-date info on FastMed clinic closures and delays. Please call ahead prior to visiting one of our clinics. Please check your local news' weather reports and exercise safety and caution when driving in winter weather conditions.

Note: clinics not listed are opening regular hours.

Clinic  Delay
Asheville, NC - Hendersonville Road - Family Practice 9am
Boone, NC - Highway 105 Extension 9am
Burlington, NC - Huffman Mill Road 9am
Candler, NC - Smokey Park Highway 9am
Cary, NC - Cornerstone Drive - Family Practice 9am
Chapel Hill, NC - East Franklin Street 9am
Charlotte, NC - W Mallard Creek Church Road 9am
Charlotte, NC - Wilkinson Boulevard - Family Practice 9am
Concord, NC - George W Liles Parkway North West 9am
Durham, NC - Hope Valley Road 9am
Greensboro, NC - Battleground Avenue 9am
Greensboro, NC - West Market Street 9am
Harrisburg, NC - School House Commons 9am
Henderson, NC - South Beckford Drive 9am
Hendersonville, NC - Spartanburg Highway 9am
Hickory, NC - Highway 70 SE 9am
High Point, NC - Skeet Club Road 9am
Holly Springs, NC - Bass Lake Road - Family Practice 9am
Kernersville, NC - South Main Street 9am
Monroe, NC - West Roosevelt Boulevard 9am
Mooresville, NC - Commons Drive 9am
Raleigh, NC - Creedmoor Road 9am
Raleigh, NC - East Millbrook Road 9am
Roanoke Rapids, NC - Julian R Allsbrook Highway 9am
Rocky Mount, NC - North Winstead Avenue 9am
Rocky Mount, NC - Sunset Avenue 9am
Roxboro, NC - North Madison Boulevard 9am
Salisbury, NC - Klumac Road 9am
Statesville, NC - Turnersburg Highway 9am
Wake Forest, NC - South Main Street 9am
Winston-Salem, NC - Old Country Club Road 9am
Winston-Salem, NC - South Stratford Road 9am
Winston-Salem, NC - University Parkway 9am

Winter Weather Advisory - North Carolina - Feb 26

0 Comment(s) | | by Reuel Heyden |

WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY
NORTH CAROLINA FASTMED CLOSURES AND DELAYS
FEBRUARY 26


CLOSURES

Visit this page for up-to-date info on FastMed clinic closures and delays. Please call ahead prior to visiting one of our clinics. Please check your local news, weather reports and exercise safety and caution when driving in winter weather conditions.

Note: clinics not listed are opening regular hours.

Clinic Closing
Asheville, NC - Hendersonville Road 5pm
Burlington, NC - Huffman Mill Road 6pm
Candler, NC - Smokey Park Highway 5pm
Durham, NC - Hope Valley Road 6pm
Chapel Hill, NC - East Franklin Street 6pm
Greensboro, NC - Battleground Avenue 7pm
Henderson, NC - South Beckford Drive 5pm
Hendersonville, NC - Spartanburg Highway 5pm
Rocky Mount, NC - North Winstead Avenue 6pm
Rocky Mount, NC - Sunset Avenue 6pm
Wilson, NC - Forest Hills Road West 7pm


Winter Weather Advisory - North Carolina - Feb 25

0 Comment(s) | | by Reuel Heyden |

WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY
NORTH CAROLINA FASTMED CLOSURES AND DELAYS
FEBRUARY 25


EARLY CLOSURES

Visit this page for up-to-date info on FastMed clinic closures and delays. Please call ahead prior to visiting one of our clinics. Please check your local news, weather reports and exercise safety and caution when driving in winter weather conditions. 

  • Hendersonville 
  • Hickory
  • Monroe
  • Salisbury

Winter Weather Advisory - North Carolina - Feb 24

0 Comment(s) | | by Reuel Heyden |

WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY
NORTH CAROLINA FASTMED CLOSURES AND DELAYS
FEBRUARY 24


Early Closures
Visit this page for up-to-date info on FastMed clinic closures and delays. Please call ahead prior to visiting one of our clinics. Please check your local news, weather reports and exercise safety and caution when driving in winter weather conditions. 

Clinic Closing
Aberdeen, NC - North Sandhills Boulevard 3pm
Apex, NC - Creekside Landing Drive 3pm
Asheville, NC - Hendersonville Road - Family Practice 5pm
Boone, NC - Highway 105 Extension  7pm
Burlington, NC - Huffman Mill Road 3pm
Candler, NC - Smokey Park Highway 5pm
Cary, NC - Cornerstone Drive - Family Practice 3pm
Cary, NC - Ten-Ten Road 3pm
Chapel Hill, NC - East Franklin Street 3pm
Charlotte, NC - W Mallard Creek Church Road 8pm
Charlotte, NC - Wilkinson Boulevard - Family Practice 3pm
Clayton, NC - US Highway 70 West - Family Practice 3pm
Concord, NC - George W Liles Parkway North West 3pm
Durham, NC - Hope Valley Road 3pm
Fayetteville (Hope Mills), NC -Town Center Drive 3pm
Fuquay-Varina, NC - North Main Street 3pm
Garner, NC - US 70 3pm
Garner, NC - NC Highway 42 West - Family Practice 3pm
Goldsboro - North Spence Avenue 3pm
Greensboro, NC - Battleground Avenue 3pm
Greensboro, NC - West Market Street 4:30pm
Greenville, NC - Greenville Boulevard 3pm
Greenville, NC - South Memorial Drive 5pm
Harrisburg, NC - School House Commons 6pm
Henderson, NC - South Beckford Drive 3pm
Hendersonville, NC - Spartanburg Highway 5pm
Hickory, NC - Highway 70 SE 3pm
High Point, NC - Skeet Club Road 3pm
Holly Springs, NC - Bass Lake Road - Family Practice 3pm
Kernersville, NC - South Main Street 3pm
Kinston, NC - North Herritage Street  3pm
Lumberton, NC - Kahn Drive 3pm
Monroe, NC - West Roosevelt Boulevard 3pm
Morehead City, NC - Bridges Street 1pm
Mooresville, NC - Commons Drive 3pm
Raleigh, NC - Creedmoor Road 3pm
Raleigh, NC - East Millbrook Road  3pm
Roanoke Rapids, NC - Julian R Allsbrook Highway 3pm
Rockingham, NC East Broad Avenue 3pm
Rocky Mount, NC - North Winstead Avenue 3pm
Rocky Mount, NC - Sunset Avenue 5pm
Roxboro, NC - North Madison Boulevard 3pm
Salisbury, NC - Klumac Road 6pm
Sanford, NC - South Horner Boulevard - Family Practice 3pm
Statesville, NC - Turnersburg Highway 3pm
Wake Forest, NC - South Main Street 3pm
Wilkesboro, NC - Addison Avenue 4pm
Wilson, NC - Forest Hills Road West 3pm
Winston-Salem, NC - Old Country Club Road 3pm
Winston-Salem, NC - South Stratford Road 3pm
Winston-Salem, NC - University Parkway 3pm

Graves’ Disease

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 Graves’ Disease

What do former President George H.W. Bush, rapper Missy Elliott, and five-time Olympic gold medalist Gail Devers all have in common? They’re each incredibly successful in their respective fields, and they each had to deal with the daily struggles of living with Graves’ disease.

It is estimated that over three million Americans suffer from Graves’ disease, including 2% of the female population. But what exactly is Graves’ disease? FastMed Urgent Care answers all of your questions about this complex illness.

What is Graves’ disease?

Graves’ disease is an autoimmune disease that affects the thyroid. Your thyroid stores and produces hormones, and these hormones impact several bodily functions. People who suffer from Graves’ disease often have an enlarged thyroid, or goiter, as well as the symptoms of hyperthyroidism.

How do you get Graves’ disease?

Graves’ disease is at least seven times more common in women than in men, and it can appear at any time in a person’s life. The cause of the disease is not known, although genetics likely play a major role. Some physicians, including Dr. Graves, the disease’s namesake, believe that severe emotional stress can trigger Graves’ disease, although this hasn’t been proven. In short, no one really knows for sure why some people develop Graves’ disease. 

What are the symptoms?

Graves’ disease causes the thyroid to work overtime, so it shares many of the symptoms of hyperthyroidism. This can include sensitivity to heat, fatigue or trouble sleeping, irritability, hand tremors, rapid heartbeat, and weight loss. Unlike other diseases that cause a hyperactive thyroid, Graves’ disease can inflame the tissue behind the eyes, so they may appear to bulge out. It can also affect vision if left untreated. This is known as Graves’ ophthalmopathy and occurs in about 30% of people with Graves’ disease. Some Graves’ disease sufferers experience skin changes, including reddening and thickening of the skin, particularly on the shins and feet.

What is the test for Graves’ disease?

If you have symptoms of Graves’ disease, the doctor may order some tests to examine your thyroid function. A blood test will likely be performed to see if you have the right amount of thyroid hormones. A radioactive iodine uptake test checks the amount of iodine the thyroid is taking up. The iodine is used to make thyroid hormones, and a high uptake may indicate Graves’ disease. There are also some antibody tests that may be performed. Your doctor will take a blood sample and use the results of your labs as well as your description of your symptoms to determine if you have Graves’ disease.

How do you treat Graves’ disease?

The good news is that once Graves’ disease is detected, there are rarely any long-term negative consequences to your health if you receive prompt, appropriate medical care. Graves’ disease is easy to treat with antithyroid medicine. This medicine keeps the thyroid from producing too much hormone. Radioactive iodine therapy is another option. You ingest radioiodine, and over time, it destroys the overactive thyroid cells. With this treatment, you will likely need medication later to maintain a normal supply of thyroid hormones. In severe cases of Graves’ disease, you may need surgery to remove all or part of your thyroid.

The symptoms of Graves’ disease, including irritability and fatigue, can occur with many other medical problems as well. If you’ve been feeling tired and cranky lately, don’t just chalk it up to stress. Come to FastMed Urgent Care for testing. The earlier you catch any potential issues, the more quickly we can treat them, so you’ll feel like your old self again.

Do You See Lumps and Bumps on Your Skin?

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 Do You See Lumps and Bumps on Your Skin?

Skin lumps and bumps are common and can appear anywhere on your body. Thankfully, most are harmless or easily treated. If you see new lumps or bumps on your skin, they may resemble one of these common skin conditions:

  • Lipomas: These small collections of fat cells are almost always harmless. If you notice a small, soft lump under your skin, it may be one of these common growths. Lipomas don’t usually require treatment.
  • Cherry Angiomas: Common in people over 40, these small red bumps are completely benign. Unless you find them unsightly, there’s no need to remove them.
  • Epidermoid Cysts: These bumps result from a damaged hair follicle and usually appear on the chest, back, or genitals. Since they’re prone to infection, you should see a doctor if you have an epidermoid cyst that hurts or looks inflamed.
  • Keratosis Pilaris: Caused by the protein keratin, keratosis pilaris is harmless and extremely common, especially in children and teenagers. These small, light-colored bumps may itch, but don’t scratch them! They’ll go away faster if you leave them alone.

Do you have a lump or bump that concerns you or doesn’t appear to be any of the above conditions? If it’s hurting, changing color, or growing, contact your local FastMed Urgent Care facility. We’ll examine the lumps and bumps on your skin and point you to the most effective treatments.

 

 

 

Winter Weather Advisory - North Carolina Feb. 17 - FastMed Closures, Delays

0 Comment(s) | | by Reuel Heyden |

With much of North Carolina under a winter storm warning February 17 and dangerous road conditions for travel, all FastMed Urgent Care locations will be closed except those listed below. Please exercise safety and caution if you chose to travel. 

See up-to-date info on FastMed clinic closures and delays below or visit the FastMed Facebook and FastMed Twitter news feeds.

Winter Weather Advisory – North Carolina - Feb 16 - FastMed Closures

0 Comment(s) | | by Reuel Heyden |

With much of North Carolina under a winter storm warning February 16 with possible snow, sleet and freezing rain, please call your local FastMed clinic for hours of availability. Check here for news updates on FastMed clinic closures and delays or visit the FastMed Facebook and FastMed Twitter news feeds.