Mount Sinai Hospital in New York is pioneering emergency room treatment strategies for geriatric patients. It has joined other medical centers in creating a geriatric E.R. to improve the quality of care and outcomes. According to the New York Times, patients over 65 account for almost 20% of emergency room visits and that number will grow as the population gets older. Read more here.
Today, UCSF’s Elizabeth Blackburn won the Nobel Prize in Medicine. Here’s the video from the press conference held in San Francisco:
How do you eat under stress? For many, chronic stress gets under the skin, stimulates the appetite and influences what people eat — often leading to the indulgence in sweet, high-fat foods. These foods tend to make you feel better in the short term, but in the long run can cause health issues. Chronic stress, in fact, has been shown to impair immune responses. Elissa Epel, PhD., an Associate Professor in the UCSF Department of Psychiatry, is testing new strategies to help people cope with stress, including the art of mindfulness.
According to Epel, being in the moment serves like a filter to help people better manage how they react in stressful situations. Epel and her colleagues are teaching mindful eating skills – such as the benefits of noticing each bite, how it tastes and how full one feels. The hope is the more mindful you are and the better you can manage and reduce stress, the less likely you are to overeat.
Here’s a video segment which goes into more detail:
How do you “redirect” a dementia patient who wants to “go home” or speak to someone who is no longer alive? How do you respond to a loved one who is living in a reality which isn’t yours? Here are a few tips that I posted yesterday on Defeat Dementia, a Facebook group which provides information and support to caregivers of dementia patients:
• Don’t worry about convincing her that her loved one has already passed away, but to pay attention to the emotion she is expressing.
• Sometimes it is helpful to encourage the patient to talk about her loved one. Try questions like “what did you do with your (mom) when you were little?”, “What do you want to say to your (mom)?”
• Perhaps having a photo of her loved one available that you can look at together, ask her to tell a story about her loved one, might be strategies that would satisfy her.
• If necessary, some caregivers have tried a white lie, like “Your (mother) lives someplace else now.” or “I can’t take you there today. Maybe tomorrow.”
• It’s helpful to try to stay in the patient’s reality, and the death of her loved one is no longer a part of her reality, so saying her (mother) is dead only confuses her.
Source: UCSF Memory and Aging Center
Neuroscientists at the University of California, Davis have launched a study using MRI scans to detect the onset of Alzheimer’s before patients show the symptoms of cognitive decline. The study also looks at whether MRI scan analysis can be used to predict the likely rate at which Alzheimer’s disease patients’ brains will deteriorate, and how quickly they will lose their ability to think and reason. According to the researcher, Dr. Owen Carmicheal:
We hope that using this technique we can provide a method for differentiating people who will experience healthy cognitive aging from those who will experience cognitive decline due to diseases like Alzheimer’s. For those who will experience cognitive decline, we hope to predict its rate of progression.
To learn more, here’s the press release.
Source: UC Davis Press Office