Emergency Care for Illness

You have no control over when a sudden illness occurs. You may wake up in the night with a severe stomachache. Perhaps you are watching television after dinner and notice chest discomfort. You aren’t sure if it is indigestion or perhaps the onset of a heart attack.

An illness can catch you off-guard. You aren’t sure what to do. You may be tempted to wait awhile and see if you get better on your own. But, some illnesses cannot wait, and you should get to an emergency room as soon as possible.

The Rice stand alone ER in Houston is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. It is staffed by Board-Certified ER physicians and registered nurses. It has state-of-the-art diagnostic tools including an onsite laboratory and imaging services, including X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, and ultrasound.

You will also enjoy short wait times. No more squirming for hours trying to get comfortable in a waiting-room chair. You can even check-in online. We promptly attend to your needs. We care and treat you compassionately. We know how miserable and inconvenient it is to need an ER, and we work to make your visit as comfortable as possible.

Symptoms that Mean You Should Go to the ER as Soon as Possible

If you have any of the following symptoms or conditions, do not wait. Head immediately to an ER.

  • Suspected food poisoning. Severe stomachache. You could have food poisoning. If you still have some of the suspicious food around, take it with you if you can. Food poisoning can be very serious, even life-threatening.
  • Upper respiratory disease, flu, bronchitis, or COVID. Fever, chills, stuffy nose, a dry cough, body aches, and fatigue. These can indicate flu, bronchitis, or COVID, which can mean a severe illness for many with coexisting conditions. At the ER, you will be tested to see if you have any of these conditions and, if so, appropriate treatment can begin immediately. There is even treatment for COVID that, if diagnosed early enough, may substantially minimize your discomfort.
  • Stroke. Weakness on one side, slurred speech, droopy eye on one side, and/or difficulty walking. You may be having, or have just had, a stroke. Get to the ER quickly. There is treatment for a stroke that needs to be started within hours of your first symptom.
  • Heart attack. Heart attack pain ranges from slight discomfort in your chest to a feeling like a Mack truck is parked on your chest. Symptoms may have been irritating you for days. The pain may run up and down your left arm, all the way to your chin. You may even have nausea and vomiting.
  • Dehydration. Symptoms of dehydration in adults and children include feeling thirsty, dark yellow urine with a strong unpleasant smell, infrequent urination, dizziness, lightheaded, dry mouth, fatigue.
  • Heat stroke. Symptoms of heatstroke include throbbing headache, accompanied by confusion and dizziness. You may have nausea, loss of consciousness, dry or damp skin, body temperature above 103 degrees, and rapid heartbeat.
  • Serious burns. Some burns can be treated at home. However, If the pain from a burn prevents you from continuing activities, has foul-smelling puss, or if the site of the burn is numb, seek immediate medical attention.  
  • Concussion. This may happen when you hit your head. Symptoms include a severe headache, dizziness, confusion, slurred speech.
  • Convulsion. This can happen after a head injury, during a heat stroke, when dehydrated, and many other possible causes.
  • Vaginal bleeding. It is particularly important to get to an ER if you are pregnant. If you are bleeding heavier than normal during your period, or have any episode of severe bleeding.
  • Severe earache.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Unexplained shortness of breath.
  • High blood pressure. If your BP is 180/120, head to the ER. If you have a severe, throbbing headache, with vision problems, you need to visit the ER.
  • Pink eye. The white part of your eye appears pink. You feel like there is something in your eye, and you have increased tear production. Your eye is itching and/or burning.

What to Expect at the Rice ER

Rice ER can care for any emergency illness. It is equipped with all the diagnostic tools necessary to diagnose your illness. You will speak to a board-certified physician soon after your arrival, in most cases, within minutes. You will receive all necessary lab and imaging tests and promptly receive the results so that a treatment plan can be established and implemented.



24/7 – 365 DAYS

Do You Have A Medical Question? Call now to speak with one of our board certified emergency physicians or use our online  check-in below.

If this is a medical emergency call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room.