Figuring out whether you or a loved one need emergency care or urgent care is never easy, especially if symptoms appear serious. Urgent care facilities are great for treating commonplace sicknesses and injuries like the flu and scrapes. Most urgent care clinics, however, are not able to treat more serious conditions like pneumonia or concussions. Additionally, not every urgent care clinic is an after-hours clinic, making them inaccessible at night when you may need care most.

For medical emergencies ALWAYS call 9-1-1.

When to go to an urgent care clinic

How do you know if urgent care is sufficient? Here are a variety of symptoms and conditions you can have treated at the closest urgent care clinic:

  • Sore throat
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Rashes or scrapes
  • Sprains
  • Earache
  • Allergies
  • Headache

When to go to the closest emergency room

If you have a condition that, without treatment, may cause you serious discomfort or life-altering consequences, go to the closest emergency room as soon as possible. While many symptoms or conditions may turn out not to be that serious, it is always better to be safe than sorry. Emergency rooms are staffed by board-certified surgeons and other doctors who are specialists in treating all conditions. Symptoms that warrant an ER visit include:

  • Allergic reaction
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Suspected broken bone
  • Sudden loss of vision
  • Loss of coordination
  • Dehydration

Behavioral health

Unlike most urgent care clinics, emergency rooms are equipped to treat behavioral health patients. If you or a loved one is experiencing erratic or destructive behavior, come to the emergency room to receive evaluation and consultation. Help is here when you or a loved one need it most. If you or someone you know is experiencing any of these conditions, seek medical attention immediately:

  • Self-inflicted wounds
  • Suicidal or homicidal feelings
  • Severe depression
  • Psychosis
  • Paranoia
  • Ingestion of toxic substances

Why choose The Medical Center of Aurora?

Our facility has emergency rooms designed to care for everything from broken bones to serious illnesses. The main campus features a Level II Trauma Center and is an accredited Chest Pain Center of Excellence by the SCPC. We also have two satellite emergency rooms for your convenience at Centennial Medical Plaza and Saddle Rock. All of our staff are highly trained to be ready for any medical emergency.

In a life-threatening situation, please call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.