Complete Care Receives National Excellence Award

One of the things we’re most proud of at Complete Care is the fact that we treat our patients like family. In addition to providing quality care, our focus is ensuring that all of our facilities offer a friendly environment. After all, feeling comfortable is the first step in achieving wellness.

While anyone who walks through our doors is aware of our unwavering commitment to quality care, we are honored to announce that on November 20, 2018, we received a Guardian of Excellence Award by Press Ganey.

What makes this accolade even more rewarding is that Press Ganey makes their decision based on patient excellence surveys. Even more outstanding, the Guardian of Excellence Award is a nationally-recognized symbol of outstanding achievement in healthcare, and it’s only conferred on organizations that consistently perform in the top 5% across the United States.

Our CEO, Rob Morris, is teeming with pride. “Thousands of healthcare organizations across the country partnered with Press Ganey in 2018 to monitor patient experience, but only 214 were given this award. 15 of the recipients were Complete Care facilities. It is an honor to get this recognition, particularly when you consider the caliber of providers we were benchmarked against. I am extremely proud of our team and the outstanding service we deliver to our patients each and every day.”

Next time you or a loved one has an emergency, know that we’ll take care of you in any of our state-of-the-art clinics. Fast, compassionate, and efficient medical care for any of your needs. That’s our promise.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services in Colorado Springs and Texas

If you or a loved one are experiencing a health ailment, let us help you. We offer 24/7 emergency care, regardless of whether it’s a minor injury or a complex health issue. No appointments are necessary.

Visit us online to find the Complete Care location nearest you.

MCL Tears: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment & More

Healthy knees are essential to do most activities: From getting out of bed, to walking to the shower, going up and down stairs, and getting most of your daily activities done. If you’re an athlete, you’re even more hyper-aware of the need to have healthy knee joints. Because there’s nothing that adds more frustration around an injury than being told that you can’t participate in your favorite sport.

Yet, getting injured may sometimes be inevitable. In order to receive proper care, it’s good to have a basic knowledge of common knee injuries, such as an MCL tear.

What is an MCL tear?

Joints are held in place by soft tissue called ligaments. The knee joint is composed of the bottom part of the femur (the thigh bone), the patella (the kneecap), and the top portion of the tibia (shin bone).

The Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) is located on the inner side of your knees.  Whenever a person suffers from a rupture in the MCL, the injury is known as an MCL tear.

Types of MCL Injuries

There are three types of MCL injuries:

Grade 1 MCL Injury

This is the mildest form of an MCL tear. You may experience minor pain and tenderness on the inside of your knee.

Grade 2 MCL Injury

When you have a grade 2 MCL injury, you’ll feel strong pain and experience swelling.

Grade 3 MCL Injury

This is the most severe type of MCL tear. The most common symptoms are significant pain and knee instability.

Symptoms of MCL Injuries

When a person has an MCL tear, they’ll experience some or all of the following symptoms:

    • Hear a popping sound as the ligament ruptures
    • Pain when putting weight on the knee, especially on the inner side of the joint.
    • The injured knee gives out
    • Instability of the knee joint

Causes and Risk Factors of MCL Injuries

MCL tears are caused by trauma to the outside of the knee, usually from a fall, an accident, or a hard hit suffered while playing sports.

It’s most likely to happen to people who play contact sports, such as:

  • Football
  • Hockey
  • Lacrosse
  • Rugby
  • Wrestling

Diagnosis and Treatment For MCL Injuries

When you go to the doctor, she or he will apply pressure along the inside of your knees to check for pain and/or tenderness. Your medical provider may also order x-rays or an MRI to verify whether there are any additional injuries to the bone.

Most MCL tears heal on their own. To ensure a full recovery, we recommend using the RICE Method: rest, icing the injury, compression, and elevation. Depending on the type of injury, your doctor may also recommend physical therapy and/or wearing a protective knee brace. Always seek a medical opinion to avoid further injury.

Although surgery is sometimes required, those instances are very rare.

MCL Injury Prevention

While some injuries are unavoidable, you can lower your risk of suffering from an MCL tear by doing regular strength training exercises for your hip and leg muscles. You should also wear protective gear when playing contact sports, and be mindful of preventing falls.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services in Colorado Springs and Texas

If you think you might have an MCL injury, we can provide you with the care you need. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.

Visit us online to find the Complete Care location nearest you.

Common Foot & Ankle Injuries

Having a foot or ankle injury will put a strain on even the most mundane of tasks, such as getting out of bed or getting ready for work. If the injury is on your right foot, don’t even think about driving. The results can entail a lot of frustration, especially if you have to take care of small children, your job requires you to spend a vast amount of time on your feet, or if you’re an athlete.

If you’re feeling pain or discomfort on a foot or ankle, read on for an overview of the most common injuries to these body parts and seek medical attention as soon as possible to prevent complications.

The 5 Most Common Foot and Ankle Injuries

1. Achilles Tendon Tears

The Achilles tendon connects the calf muscles to the heel bone and is the largest tendon in the human body. When overstretched, it can partially break. If the injury is severe, it could be completely severed. Symptoms include swelling, bruising, stiffness, and an inability to stand on your toes. You would also have difficulty walking, since the tendon is necessary for your feet to push off the ground.

If the injury is minor, it’ll heal on its own, as long as you take a break from the physical activity that caused it in the first place. You may also have to take anti-inflammatory medications to alleviate pain. If you suffered a complete tear, your doctor may recommend physical therapy or even surgery, as a last resort.

2. Sprained or Broken Toe

Everyone will stub a toe during one point during their life. Sometimes, all you feel is a sharp pain that subsides after a few minutes. Other times, it’s possible to injure the tendons surrounding the toe bones. When this happens, the injury can be treated by icing the area and by taking over-the-counter painkillers. However, if you fractured a toe, you’ll need medical attention to avoid complications such as chronic pain or post-traumatic arthritis.

3. Stress Fractures

Repetitive movement can cause small, hairline cracks of your foot bones. The most common symptom is that the pain gets worsens during physical activity and feels a lot better during resting periods. The best way to prevent this type of injury is to warm up with dynamic drills, wear an adequate pair of shoes for your activity of choice, and by increasing the intensity of workouts gradually.

4. Ankle Sprain

If the tendons or ligaments surrounding an ankle are overstretched, you’ll feel pain in the area. This can happen if you land incorrectly from a jump, or roll your foot inward during exercise. They typically heal on their own; however, you should apply the RICE Method for treating injuries: Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation to fully heal.

5. Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar fascia is the band of tissue that connects your heel bone to your toes, supporting the arches of your feet. Plantar Fasciitis occurs when the plantar fascia becomes inflamed. The condition is easily recognizable as pain on the bottom of your heel when you stand or walk. People who are at a higher risk of developing this condition include pregnant women, long-distance runners, and people who have flat feet or are obese.

Plantar Fasciitis can be treated with rest, physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medications, and physical therapy.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services in Colorado Springs and Texas

If you have a foot or ankle injury, we can provide you with the care you need. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.

Find the Complete Care location nearest you.

Flu Symptoms 2019: What You Should Know About 2019’s Flu Season

Getting the flu comes with a long list of issues: In addition to feeling achy and exhausted, you have to navigate how to go about your daily routine without getting your family infected. To add insult to injury, seldom can a person take several unplanned days off work without it affecting their workload and deadlines.

While it’s impossible to completely eliminate the likelihood of getting sick, it helps to know flu basics and what you can do to keep yourself as healthy as possible.

What Is The Flu?

Influenza (commonly known as “the flu”) is a highly contagious virus that affects the nose, throat, and lungs.

Common Influenza Symptoms

Symptoms can range from mild to severe and include the following:

  • Sore Throat
  • Runny Nose
  • Congestion
  • Body Aches
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting

How Does The Flu Spread?

The virus is spread by small droplets of saliva when people sneeze, cough, or talk. The risk of transmission increases when an infected person touches their mouth, nose, or eyes, then makes physical contact with people or shared objects and surfaces.

Who Is At Risk Of Getting Infected By The Flu?

People who are under five years of age, pregnant, over 65, or who have a chronic health condition are at higher risk of getting infected and experiencing complications, such as bronchitis or pneumonia.

Is Flu The Same Every Year?

As it turns out, the virus is not the same every single year. In fact, there are several types of the flu virus: Influenza A can be carried and spread by animals (such as H1N1 or swine flu or H5N1 bird flu), while Influenza B and C can only be contracted by humans.

A and B are the most serious ones that can result in complications, while Influenza C is much milder and can feel like a strong cold. And under the Influenza A umbrella, there are additional subtypes of flu viruses. It’s also important to note that what’s commonly known as the stomach flu has nothing to do with influenza.

What Is Different About The 2019 Flu Season?

One of the worst cases of a flu pandemic occurred in 2009, due to a swine flu outbreak. That said, the early months of 2018 brought with it a higher than usual number of influenza-related hospitalizations. This was due to poor performance by the year’s flu shot against the H3N2A strain.

As a result of the complications in early 2018, improvements were made to the vaccine to get ready for the 2019 flu season. Both the FDA and CDC are recommending getting the flu shot to diminish as much as possible the chances of contracting most variants of the virus.

Other things you can do to protect yourself include adopting lifestyle changes that will boost your immune system, such as eating healthy, getting enough sleep, getting regular exercise, and staying hydrated.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services In Colorado Springs And Texas

If you have the flu, we can provide you with the care you need. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.

Visit us online to find the Complete Care location nearest you.

How to Protect Yourself From The Flu

Most people go about their daily routines taking their overall health for granted. If nothing hurts and we’re comfortable, it’s easy to not give our well-being a second thought. But once flu season comes around and you start seeing family members and co-workers walking around looking miserable, and spreading germs, your senses go on high alert. You have things to do, places to go. The last thing you need is to have influenza slow you down. So what can you do to protect yourself?

What Is Influenza?

Influenza (commonly known as “the flu”) is a highly contagious viral infection of the respiratory system. The symptoms can range from mild to severe and can knock you down for several days. Influenza symptoms include:

  • Sore Throat
  • Runny Nose
  • Body Aches
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Diarrhea

The virus is spread by tiny drops of saliva when people sneeze, cough, or talk. The likelihood of contagion increases when the infected person touches their mouth, nose, or eyes, then make physical contact with people or shared objects and surfaces.

While most people can recover relatively quickly with rest and antibiotics, some people are at high risk of developing complications, such as pneumonia or bronchitis. These include children under five years of age, pregnant women, adults over 65 and people with serious underlying conditions, such as heart disease or blood disorders.

How To Protect Yourself From The Flu

1. Wash Your Hands

This seems like a no-brainer, but a lot of people walk out of bathrooms without taking the time to wash their hands. Use soap and warm water and rub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Remember to wash between the fingers and under nails.

2. Avoid Touching Your Eyes, Mouth, And Nose

This is the easiest way for you to spread your own germs as well as to bring someone else’s flu microbes into your system.

3. Wipe Surfaces

If you work in shared spaces, keep disinfectant wipes handy and use them regularly. If you know you have co-workers who come in sick to the office, request to work remotely for a couple of days or speak with your supervisor so that the sick person can be asked to stay home.

4. Sneeze Into The Crook Of  Your Arm

How many times have you sneezed or coughed into your fist? You then open doors, use office supplies, push the button on the water cooler, and greet colleagues with a handshake. This is what makes it so easy for the flu virus to spread like wildfire. If you forget and sneeze into your hands, wash them immediately afterwards.

5. Eat Healthy Foods

Quick question. Who do you think is going to have better health? Someone who eats bacon-wrapped everything, or someone who makes an effort to incorporate plant-based whole foods into their lifestyle? Look for foods that boost your immune system, such as oranges, ginger, spinach, berries, and whole grains.

6. Stay Hydrated

Drinking water regularly helps loosen mucus. You get extra points if you drink it warm or hot (drink it with tea and honey if the thought of hot water doesn’t sound appealing). This is because ingesting warm or hot water aids the body in relaxing and detoxifying.

7. Get Vaccinated

This is especially important if you’re at high risk (young children, pregnant women, and senior citizens fall into this category), or if you have a chronic medical condition. Keep in mind that the strain of the virus evolves from year to year, so if you want to get a shot, do it annually.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services in Colorado Springs and Texas

If you have the flu, we can provide you with the care you need. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.

Find the Complete Care location nearest you.

Why Does My Shoulder Hurt During Cold Weather?

Experiencing shoulder pain can make simple tasks difficult. Showering, getting dressed, driving, and carrying groceries seems impossible. Even sleeping, which is supposed to bring you rest and respite from busy days, can cause frustration as you switch positions, looking for ways to feel comfortable despite your pain.

The misery can be heightened when you look at the weather report and see a cold front approaching. This is because for some people, cold weather exacerbates shoulder pain. Why does it happen and what can you do to prevent it?

5 Common Reasons For Shoulder Pain in Cold Weather

While there are plenty of people who don’t experience any physical discomfort during cold weather, it’s important to note that those who do notice pain during winter are not imagining things. There are several reasons why lower temperatures may cause a person to have achy shoulders.

1. Increased Sensitivity From Cold Weather

If you suffer from an underlying condition, such as rheumatoid arthritis, your joints are going to feel more sensitive to cold weather. In addition to pain, you may feel stiffness and swelling. Humidity may also cause pain flare-ups.

2. Increased Stress From Cold Weather

While the stress of getting end-of-the-year tasks completed at work may make you feel like there aren’t enough hours in a day, we’re talking about physical strain and tension to your shoulder muscles as you hunch over in attempts to keep warm.

3. Changes In Barometric Pressure From Cold Weather

Cold weather brings about changes in barometric pressure, which may cause soft tissue such as muscles and ligaments to expand. This is because lower air pressure puts less pressure on your body. As a result, a person may feel pain in their joints.

4. Inactivity During Cold Weather

It’s no secret that when the weather outside is frightful and the fire is so delightful, you may be tempted to stay bundled up on your couch instead of going out for a run. This may be fine for a day or two, but extended periods of inactivity can result in body aches. Since the shoulders tend to carry a larger amount of pressure than other body parts, that’s where you’re most likely to feel the pain.

5. Older Age And Cold Weather

Getting older is something that’s worth celebrating. It means you have extra time to spend with loved ones and create memories. However, it also means more stiffness, which cold weather can aggravate. Doing low-impact exercises, such as tai chi or yoga, as well as regular stretching of your shoulders can help you avoid (or at least decrease) the pain.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services In Colorado Springs And Texas

If you’re experiencing shoulder pain, we can provide you with the care you need. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.

Find the Complete Care location nearest you.

How to Spot the Difference Between a Cold and the Flu

Being sick is never fun. That being said, it’s important to be able to spot the difference between cold and flu symptoms before things get too far along.

How to Spot the Difference Between a Cold and the Flu

Jammed Finger vs. Broken Finger: How to Tell the Difference

Fingers. They may be small, but what a major part they play in everything we do: getting dressed, eating, driving, buying groceries, bathing… So when you injure any of them, things can get exasperating pretty fast.

That said, sometimes, an injury results in a jammed finger, which may have a quick fix, while other injuries may result in a fracture.

In the interest of providing you with adequate care, below is a summary of how to tell whether you have a jammed or broken finger.

Differences Between a Jammed and a Broken Finger

If you injure any of the joints in your digits, you’ll have a jammed finger. It’s the type of injury you may experience if you shut a door or a drawer on your hand. A jammed finger is also possible when a forceful impact pushes your fingers into your hand, injuring the ligaments.

On the other hand (no pun intended, but it fits), a broken finger causes extreme pain. The kind of pain that will make you question life. However, there are several types of broken bones, ranging from a stress fracture, to the kind of injury where the bone pierces the skin.

Symptoms of a Jammed Finger

If you have a jammed finger, symptoms will include:

  • Sharp pain
  • Redness
  • Swelling of the injured joint
  • Weakness of the finger
  • Difficulty grabbing objects

Symptoms of a Broken Finger

If you have a broken finger, symptoms will include:

  • Excruciating pain
  • Bruising
  • Significant swelling
  • Unable to move that finger

Diagnosis & Treatment for a Jammed or Broken Finger

To confirm if there’s been a fracture, your doctor will order X-Rays of your hand.

For a Jammed Finger:

If the finger is jammed, the following are conservative treatment options:

  • Icing the injured joint for 20 minutes at a time
  • Immobilize the finger by taping it to the finger next to it or wearing a splint
  • Keep finger elevated by wearing a sling
  • Take over-the-counter pain relievers

Keep the finger immobilized and at chest level for at least two weeks. However, you can stop icing it as soon as the swelling goes down for good.

For a Broken Finger:

If the fracture is minor, the doctor will immobilize it with a cast or a splint. It may be possible to include the fingers next to the injured one in the cast to provide additional support.

  • Ice the finger, but do not apply ice directly. Use a towel or rag around the ice.
  • Wear the cast for about four weeks. You’ll also likely need follow-up X-rays to confirm healing before removing it.
  • If you’re only wearing a splint, follow your doctor’s instructions.
  • Take over-the-counter pain relievers.

For more severe injuries, surgery may be necessary to realign the bone. It’s also important to note that if the bone pierced the skin, there’s a likelihood of developing a fever and/or infection. If this occurs, seek emergency care immediately.

Complications for a Jammed Finger

Complications for a jammed finger include damage to veins, permanent stiffness of the finger, post-traumatic arthritis, or deformity of the joint.

Complications for a Fractured Finger

Complications for a fractured finger include reduced range of motion, which can be treated with physical therapy. Other complications include deformity or nonunion, which are results of not receiving care promptly.

Finally, if a person is a smoker, diabetic, or has kidney issues, he or she could also develop osteomyelitis, which is an infection of the bone.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services in Colorado Springs and Texas

If you have an injured finger, let us help you. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.

Sprained Toe vs. Broken Toe: How to Tell the Difference

Stubbing a toe is ridiculously painful. It doesn’t seem like the level of pain you feel when it happens is commensurate with the size of the body part. However, how the trauma affects you will vary significantly depending on whether you simply sprained your toe or fractured it.

So how can you tell which type of injury you have?

Symptoms of a Sprained Toe

A person can sprain their toe from either a specific injury or from stress due to repetitive activities, such as those of an athlete or a professional dancer.

The main indication that an injured toe is sprained is that while it may be tender and painful, you can still move it. This doesn’t mean, however, that you should ignore it if the pain persists. When a person has a sprained toe, the discomfort should subside within a couple of days with the help of simple home remedies, such as applying ice and resting it.

If this isn’t helping you feel better, you should seek medical attention to rule out a dislocation. This is crucial to prevent complications such as the development of bone spurs or a hammer toe.

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

One of the most cringe-worthy moments of experiencing a fracture is that the person can sometimes actually hear the bone cracking when it breaks. If you heard that, it doesn’t matter how much you hope it was just your imagination. You likely have a broken toe.

In addition (or even if you didn’t hear the crack since some injuries occur in loud places), a broken toe will come with the following symptoms:

  • Persistent pain that doesn’t improve with the passage of time
  • You can’t move your toe
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • You can’t put any weight on the injured toe
  • Tingling or numbness

It’s also important to note that just as with sprains, fractures can be the result of cumulative trauma. For example, if you are a gymnast, long-distance runner, or have to repeatedly carry heavy loads at work, your toe may develop a stress fracture. While the symptoms of a stress fracture may be similar to the ones listed above, the pain usually subsides when you take a break from doing the activity that caused it.

Regardless of how you got the fracture, it’s essential to seek medical treatment to avoid deformities of the joint or to curb the risk of developing post-traumatic arthritis.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services in Colorado Springs and Texas

If you’ve injured your toe and the symptoms are not subsiding, let us help you. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.

Acute Pain: Signs, Symptoms, Causes & More

Feeling pain can be frustrating, irritating, and debilitating. This is especially the case when you have a million things on your To-Do list and feel like there’s not really any spare time to take off your responsibilities.

However, if you’re experiencing acute pain, it’s essential to take some time off to rest and receive adequate treatment. After all, the only way to get back on track as soon as possible is to fully heal. Failing to receive proper care can only lead to complications and even more time off the field to do the things you want to get done.

But what exactly is acute pain?

What Is Acute Pain?

Acute pain the sensation you feel as soon as you experience an injury. For example, if you break a bone, slice open a finger while chopping vegetables, or fall down the stairs, you’re going to feel acute pain. It’s a signal from your body that it has just underwent physical trauma.

Generally, once the injury heals, the pain stops.

Common Causes For Acute Pain

In addition to the blunt trauma examples mentioned above, a person could also suffer from acute pain due to any of the following reasons:

  • Going to the dentist
  • Sprains and strains of a body part
  • Infections on a cut
  • Getting burned
  • Giving birth
  • Slipping and falling
  • Bumping a body part against a hard surface
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Passing a kidney stone

The range of pain can vary significantly depending on what’s causing it or the severity of the injury.

Symptoms of Acute Pain

Acute pain tends to be of a relatively short duration (and we use this term loosely, since when someone is in pain, a couple of days can feel like a lifetime). The most common symptoms include:

  • Sharp pain
  • Throbbing
  • Burning
  • A stabbing pain
  • Tingling
  • Weakness
  • Numbness

Effects Of Acute Pain On The Body

It’s important to note that acute pain can affect much more than an injured body part. If a person is experiencing debilitating pain, the effects will bleed into other areas of the person’s life. It’s very common for a person who’s suffering from severe pain to be unable to get restful sleep because of it, or lose their appetite.

Depending on the location of the pain, it can also cause breathing difficulties, and in a worst-case scenario, could result in addiction to pain medication or even depression.

Treatment Options For Acute Pain

If it was a minor injury, your medical provider will likely instruct you to rest, ice the injury, and maybe keep it compressed and/or elevated. Over-the-counter medication may also help alleviate the pain.

However, when dealing with more serious injuries, the person may need stronger medications, such as opioids, as well as physical therapy, pain management alternatives, and as a last resort, surgery.

24-Hour Emergency Room Services in Colorado Springs and Texas

If you’re suffering from pain, let us help you. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.