• A Patient’s Guide to Allergy Skin Testing

    Have you been suffering from watery eyes, sneezing, or hives? If so, then you may be affected by allergies, for which your primary care physician in Atlanta may recommend allergy skin testing. Keep reading to learn about this type of test and what you can expect. allergy - testing

    Why It’s Done

    One of the most important steps toward managing your allergies is understanding what’s causing them. It’s for this reason that doctors often advise their patients to take an allergy skin test. Skin testing allows your doctor to test you for many different allergens in a single clinic appointment.

    How It Works

    Allergy skin testing uses concentrated, liquid forms of some of the most common allergens, such as animal dander, mold, pollen, dust mites, and some foods. When these allergens get under your skin, they may trigger a rash that causes it to itch and become irritated. This process happens when you’re exposed to something that you’re allergic to, and your immune system produces antibodies and chemicals that attempt to fight off the aggravating substance. It’s this reaction that informs your doctor that you’re allergic to a particular allergen.

    What to Expect

    There are 3 primary types of allergy skin tests. During the first, called a scratch test, a nurse or doctor will clean your skin with alcohol, label different areas of your skin with a pen, and then place a drop of each allergen extract on your skin according to the labels. Then, your skin is gently scratched to let the allergen through the skin’s outer layer. Intradermal allergy skin testing involves injecting a small amount of a suspected allergen slightly under the skin. Finally, a patch test may be performed, which involves wearing a patch with the allergen on your back or arm.

    When You’ll Get Your Results

    Scratch and intradermal tests are usually completed in a one-hour clinic appointment, during which your doctor can inform you of what allergens your skin reacted to. Patch tests typically take about 48 hours and are often used to test for delayed reactions.

  • What to Expect from an Abscess Incision and Drainage

    Abscesses are infected pockets of tissue and pus that accumulate under the skin. They almost always require drainage to resolve the infection and prevent it from recurring. Because abscesses typically become progressively worse and can cause a more dangerous infection if they are left untreated, it is important to seek urgent care if you think you have one. Here is a look at what you can expect from the abscess drainage procedure.  Abscess - incision

    Pain Control

    Most people who seek abscess incision do so because the abscess is painful. In some cases, the physician at the urgent care facility may recommend that you receive local anesthesia to numb the area around the abscess. Some abscesses are resistant to anesthesia, and the inflammation can make the numbing injections more painful than they are normally. For this reason, some people may opt to have the abscess opened without anesthesia or to take a sedative before the procedure. Your physician will review all of your options and help you make the right choice for you.

    Incision and Drainage

    Your physician will make a small incision in the abscess, which allows the pus inside to begin to drain out. For many people, pain relief is immediate. Because the incision can close up before the drainage is complete, a small drainage tube may be placed at the site to keep it open, or it may be packed with bandages to prevent it from closing before the drainage is complete. If the abscess is not drained completely, it could come back.

    Drain Removal

    You will need to return to the urgent care facility to have the drain or packing removed within a day or two of the incision procedure. Your physician will advise you when to return and what kind of aftercare you may need.

    Perimeter Clinic provides walk-in urgent care treatments for everything from abscesses to stomach bugs. Get on the road to wellness as soon as possible when you need care by visiting us for your non-emergency urgent care needs in Atlanta. You can learn more by calling (678) 904-5611.

  • Your Blood Pressure: Understanding the Numbers

    One of the most important indicators of overall health is your blood pressure. Every time you see a medical provider, whether you are having a physical with your primary care physician or seeking urgent care for an emergent need, you will have your blood pressure taken. Here is what your blood pressure says about your health.

    Blood pressure readings are expressed as two numbers: your systolic pressure over your diastolic pressure measured in mm Hg. Normal blood pressure is below 120 over below 80mm Hg. If your numbers are over 125 over 95 or more, then you have high blood pressure. The higher those numbers become, the more at risk you are for heart disease and stroke. Your physician may recommend blood pressure medication if your high readings persist. If you seek urgent care and your blood pressure is significantly elevated, it could indicate that your body is under stress in some way or that you are experiencing a heart crisis.

    Your primary care physician at Perimeter Clinic in Atlanta can help you manage your blood pressure with lifestyle changes and medications as needed. Call us today at (678) 904-5611 to make an appointment for a physical or to learn more about our walk-in primary care services.

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  • What All Women Need to Know About Ectopic Pregnancies

    An ectopic pregnancy is a potentially life-threatening condition for women that requires urgent care. Because many women may not have yet even realized they are pregnant when an ectopic pregnancy occurs, it is important to know the symptoms and react quickly, regardless of whether or not you think you could be pregnant. Seek urgent care at a clinic near your Atlanta home if you think you could be experiencing an ectopic pregnancy. Here are the facts every women needs to know. ectopic - pregnancy

    What is an ectopic pregnancy?

    An ectopic pregnancy occurs when a fertilized egg does not travel from the Fallopian tubes to the uterus as expected but instead implants somewhere else in the abdomen. If the ectopic pregnancy is not diagnosed and treated, it can lead to the rupture of your Fallopian tube, which may cause serious internal bleeding that can be life-threatening.

    What are the symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy?

    Typically, unexpected vaginal bleeding and pelvic pain are the first signs of an ectopic pregnancy. As the condition worsens, you may experience nausea, vomiting, sharp cramping, dizziness, and weakness. Some women have pain on one side of their body, while others experience pain in the rectum, neck, or shoulder. Many of the symptoms, particularly the location of the pain, depend on where the egg has implanted. If you experience symptoms, seek urgent care right away, where your doctor can use diagnostic imaging tests to determine if you have an ectopic pregnancy.

    How are ectopic pregnancies treated?

    Ectopic pregnancies can’t be successful, so the fertilized tissue has to be removed. In very early stages of an ectopic pregnancy, an injectable medication can stop the cells from getting larger so that your body can reabsorb them. If the pregnancy has grown too large, then your doctor may need to surgically remove the cells. If your Fallopian tube has ruptured, it may need to be removed as well.

  • Why Yearly Physicals Are Important

    Yearly physicals are the foundation of preventative medicine. They can reduce your risk of suffering from many common illnesses and allow your primary care physician to diagnose problems in their early stages, when they are most treatable. If the limited hours at most medical practices have been keeping you from getting the physical you need, then you should know that you can get an annual physical at an urgent care clinic in Atlanta with extended hours, so your appointment can fit into your schedule. If you’re doubting the importance of adding time for a physical to your busy calendar, here is a look at some of the ways that physicals can impact your health. yearly - physical

    Find out information about your current health

    One part of your physical is a thorough assessment of your current health. During your exam, your physician will evaluate your weight, blood pressure, respiratory health, heart health, and skin health. He or she may also order lab tests to determine your cholesterol, blood glucose, and blood counts. This information creates a picture of how healthy you are today and whether you need to begin any treatments to control emerging health issues, such as medication for high blood pressure.

    Get a picture of your future health risks

    The information about your current health that is collected during your physical also creates a picture of what health problems you could be at risk for in the future, so you can take steps to protect your health. For example, if your weight has crept up and your blood glucose numbers are climbing, your doctor may tell you that you are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes. With this knowledge, you can adopt a healthy eating plan to reduce your weight and cut your chances of developing diabetes.

    Ask questions about your health needs

    A physical is the perfect time to ask your doctor any questions that are on your mind about your health, such as whether you should consider STD testing or if you should consider travel vaccinations for an upcoming trip. Take advantage of this time when you have your doctor’s complete attention to address any health issues that are on your mind.

  • Preventive Medicine: Saving Lives and Cutting Costs

    In every instance, preventing a health problem is better than treating it. Preventive medicine helps to do just that by screening patients for risk factors and signs of various conditions and educating them about ways they can be proactive in protecting their health. Under the Affordable Care Act, physicals are available free of charge, putting access to preventive care within everyone’s reach. At Perimeter Clinic in Atlanta , we offer fast appointments for adult physicals with our primary care physicians. Here is a closer look at the benefits of preventive medicine. urgent - care

    Lower Medical Costs

    During a physical, physicians can provide education about reducing the risk of certain health conditions and treatments that prevent conditions from becoming worse. These preventive services can add up to significant savings. Consider these statistics from the Surgeon General that demonstrate the cost-saving benefits of preventive care:

    • Reducing high blood pressure by 5% would decrease health spending by $25 billion in 5 years.
    • Preventing tobacco use can save $9,800 per person over the course of a lifetime.
    • Every time an HIV infection is prevented, $355,000 in lifetime medical costs are saved.

    Fewer Lost Work Days

    Poor health is extremely costly for employers. People with chronic medical conditions that are poorly managed miss more days of work than healthier workers and may be less productive when they are on the job. Making a direct investment into employee health can be approximately two to three times less expensive than the indirect costs of lost productivity due to poor health. Further, healthy employees have fewer financial concerns caused by lost time at work, particularly when they are hourly employees.

    Better Quality of Life

    When allowed to progress untreated, many manageable health conditions can have a significantly negative impact on quality of life. For instance, if a person who is at risk for diabetes doesn’t get preventative care and develops the condition with getting the proper treatment, he or she may suffer from vision loss, kidney disease, and painful neuropathy. People with uncontrolled high blood pressure can suffer from a stroke or heart attack that could lead to lifelong disability and even loss of life, which could have been prevented with the appropriate care.

  • Is Chlamydia Dangerous?

    Chlamydia is an extremely common STD that is easy to cure with medications but that can cause significant complications when it is left untreated. Women in particular need to be vigilant about getting tested for chlamydia, as their fertility could be in jeopardy if the disease is left untreated. Fortunately, discreet, anonymous STD testing in Atlanta is available at Perimeter Clinic, where you can walk in and get tested without an appointment. Here are the facts you need to know about chlamydia. doctor - treatment

    What exactly is chlamydia?

    Chlamydia is a bacterial infection that can be transmitted via vaginal, anal, and oral intercourse. Although anyone can get chlamydia, it is most common in people under 25 and in gay or bisexual men. Condoms can dramatically reduce the risk of contracting chlamydia, so people who have unprotected sex outside of a monogamous relationship are the most vulnerable. Note that a partner does not have to ejaculate for chlamydia to be transmitted.

    What are the symptoms?

    In both men and women, chlamydia frequently causes no symptoms, especially in the early stages of the infection. That is why STD testing is so important if you have risk factors, such as engaging in unprotected sex. Some people with chlamydia experience abnormal vaginal or penile discharge, painful urination, sore throats, and inflamed eyes. Women may have bleeding between their periods and painful intercourse if they are infected.

    What are the complications of untreated chlamydia?

    Untreated chlamydia is most dangerous to women. It can cause pelvic inflammatory disease, which in turn can lead to irreversible damage to the reproductive system. As a result, women may experience infertility and ectopic pregnancy, which could be life-threatening. For both men and women, having untreated chlamydia can increase the likelihood of contracting HIV, because the same behaviors that increase the risk of chlamydia exposure also increase the risk of HIV. Likewise, having chlamydia can make your body more vulnerable to infections like HIV.

  • Why Is It Important to Have a Primary Care Physician You Trust?

    The relationship that you form with your doctor can impact your long-term health. Are you looking for a provider of primary care in Atlanta ? If so, then read on to learn several reasons why it’s important to choose a clinic with a doctor that you trust. primary - care

    Developing Open Communication

    When it comes to protecting your physical health, being able to communicate with your doctor openly and without reservation is essential. When you have a primary care physician that you trust, you are more likely to discuss any health concerns that you have, ask questions about your treatment options, and comply with your doctor’s medical recommendations. On the other hand, feeling uncertain about your doctor and passively listening to her advice can make you less likely to comply with her recommendations and adhere to your treatment plan. For these reasons, developing a relationship and establishing trust with your doctor are crucial.

    Having Regular Checkups

    Even when they have access to primary care, many people fail to see their doctor on a regular basis. While several factors can influence this, not having a strong relationship with and a sense of trust toward their primary care physician is one reason why some people do not see their doctor for physicals and checkups as frequently as they should. When you trust your doctor, then there is a better chance that you will make and attend appointments for checkups, rather than cancel or postpone these important visits.

    Receiving Better Care

    Many physicians will tell you that forming a long-term relationship with your primary care physician is one of the best things that you can do to ensure better care for yourself. This is because you are likely to become more trusting of your doctor as you see one another over the years, so this can lead to better communication, consistent treatment compliance, and regular appointments. For these reasons, it is important to take the time to find a clinic and primary care physician that you trust.

  • Who Should Have a Reproductive Health Evaluation?

    Your health could be considered your greatest asset, so protecting it is important. Once of the best ways to promote your long-term wellness is to see a physician regularly for checkups. In particular, doctors near Atlanta recommend that women who have children or who plan to have children visit a clinic for a physical exam and reproductive health evaluation once per year.

    Annual adult physicals can be essential for the early detection of life-threatening conditions. For women, reproductive health evaluations are also critical for promoting the health of their reproductive systems. When you visit your clinic for this type of examination, your doctor will perform a pelvic exam to check for anything that may affect your reproductive health, such as uterine fibroids. A Pap smear, which is a screening for cervical cancer, may also be included in your exam, and your physician will inform you if she believes that you would benefit from STD screening. If you are a woman who has children or who plans to, then consider calling your local clinic to schedule your annual physical and reproductive health evaluation.

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  • Recovering from an Ankle Sprain

    A sprained ankle occurs when a ligament in the ankle stretches too far or becomes torn. Ankle sprains are an incredibly common type of injury, and they can be quite painful and interfere with your normal activities. If you’re planning to visit an urgent care clinic in Atlanta for this type of injury, then continue reading to learn about recovering from an ankle sprain. sprained - ankle

    Rest
    When it comes to treating ankle sprains, doctors usually advice R.I.C.E. guidelines, which involve rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Your urgent care doctor will inform you that rest will be a critical step in the ligament’s recovery. To do this, you should stay off of your ankle as much as possible and limit the amount of weight that you put on it during the healing process. Your physician may recommend the use of crutches to help you provide your ankle with the rest that it needs.

    Treatment
    In addition to rest, controlling swelling in your ankle is one of the best ways to speed the recovery of your injury. For this reason, your urgent care doctor may recommend that you wear an ankle brace to provide the joint with compression. Wearing a brace can also help support and immobilize the ankle. When applying cold packs for the swelling, you should never put ice directly on your skin. Instead, place a thin piece of cloth between your ankle and the ice pack. Also, do not apply ice for more than 20 minutes each session. Finally, keeping your foot elevated by propping it up above waist or heart level will help control inflammation.

    Rehabilitation
    To help promote the complete healing of your ankle, the ligament injury will require rehabilitation. This step involves restoring the joint’s range of motion, strength, and flexibility following rest and treatment for swelling. Once you can stand on your injured ankle once more, your doctor may prescribe stretches and exercises to help the joint get back to normal. Gradually, you should be able to return to your normal routine and activities.