Magic carpets for seniors, 91 years of friendship, Internet & disease care, and silent heart attacks

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There’s a new “magic carpet” for seniors who are at risk for falls; it alerts caregivers if a patient is at risk for a fall. 

Talk about best friends forever: two Florida men celebrated 91 years of friendship last week.

If you have multiple diseases, the Internet has plenty of advice for managing your care.

Not all heart attacks come with chest pains and a trip to the emergency room; silent heart attacks impact many older adults.

Photo courtesy of Yos C. Wiranta on Flickr.

Blood pressure, CPR, fake bus stops, and benefits of being skinny

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For the very old, high blood pressure may not be a bad thing.

CPR isn’t as successful as the TV shows make it seem.  Additionally, it’s pretty painful if you do survive.

A German nursing home has put a fake bus stop in front of the facility to stop seniors from wandering off. 

There’s another benefit to staying skinny: it keeps your mind healthier.

Photo courtesy of meddygarnet on Flickr.

 

Heart attacks & sex, brain health, pets, and aging as a disease

Worried about having a heart attack during sex?  A new study shows that the risk isn’t very large, unless you’re having an affair.

There’s a new book out about keeping your brain healthy as you age. The main message is that things slow down as you age, and there are lifestyle choices (medication, addiction, and others) that can make it worse. (Bonus: Help your brain by playing Bingo!)

Taking care of your pet after you go: There are new ways to make sure that Fluffy doesn’t get kicked to the curb. (Bonus: Dogs and cats do dream!)

Is aging a disease?  If so, then we’re going to run into some problems trying to cure it.

Eyes & diabetes, statins, cancer rehab, and Medicare fraud

Eyes can be the windows to the soul, but they can also help your doctors figure out if you’re at risk for disease.  Bonus: Scientists are developing a new test for diabetics.  Instead of pricking your finger, you collect teardrops.

Study confirms that statins are safe; over the long run, cancer and heart disease risk is the same for those who are taking statins and those who are not.

Doing rehab during cancer treatment improves outcomes.

Need something to occupy your time?  Help Medicare catch fraud! 

 

Heart Attacks, staying at home, bacteria, colon cancer, Medicare, and final wishes

Saving Lives. A new initiative called “Million Hearts,” sponsored by CMS and the CDC, will attempt to decrease fatal heart attacks and strokes by 1,000,000 per year.

Staying home safely.  A physician discusses the safest way for seniors to remain in their homes for as long as possible.

92% of hospital curtains contain bacteria.  Yuck.  

Men should get colon cancer screening at a younger age.  A new study shows that men and women have different risk profiles for colon cancer and therefore need different screening guidelines.

 

Pre-retirees underestimate the importance of Medicare.  Those who have already retired hold it in much higher regard. (Here is the NPR article on the same topic.)

Talking with your doctor about your final wishes won’t cause you to die sooner.  A new study shows no difference in survival rates between patients that talk about advanced directives and those that don’t.

 

Heart attacks, long term care, AARP, and the doctor/patient relationship

Quick quiz: Do you know what a heart attack feels like?  Even this doctor had trouble knowing the sensation.

School’s out for the CLASS program.  The Obama administration pulls the plug on the Affordable Care Act’s Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) program. This might be a good thing, since the program did not appear to be sustainable.

AARP versus the debt panel.  AARP wants to make sure Congress knows not to touch Medicare.

Doctors versus patients.  A physician delves into the reasons that patients and doctors fall into adversarial relationships.