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Senior Health Blog

  • Chronic Kidney Disease

    Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is very common—affecting about 14 percent of the US adult population. It’s closely related to diabetes and high blood pressure, and can cause serious complications.

  • Keeping Resolutions in the New Year

    It’s that time of year again! New Year’s Day is around the corner and many of us are starting to think about making a resolution. But how do you stick to your resolution and not give up before Valentine’s Day? We’ve listed some tips below on how to make and keep momentum toward your New Year’s resolution throughout the year.

  • Managing the Pain of Shingles

    Shingles is a common, painful rash that will affect up to 1 in 5 people. Identifying and treating shingles quickly can prevent further pain and long-term complications.

  • Healthy Holiday Tips from The Heart Hospital

    Learn about these healthy tips and why they’re important to you. 

  • What Is Palliative Care?

    Perhaps you’ve heard the term “palliative care” but weren’t sure what it meant. Palliative care is specialized medical care for people with chronic illnesses, focusing on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain and stress of a chronic illness regardless of the diagnosis. The overall goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and the family.

  • Resources for Family Caregivers

    Caregiving for an aging loved one can be both rewarding and challenging. Many caregivers don’t know about resources and services that can help make their jobs easier and improve the quality of life for themselves and their loved one.

  • Painful Bladder--Could It Be Interstitial Cystitis?

    Interstitial cystitis (I.C.) is a problem with the lining of the bladder and is often called painful bladder syndrome or irritable bladder – and for good reasons, it's painful! I.C. occurs mostly in women, is underdiagnosed and often mistaken for a urinary tract infection.

  • Understanding CHF (Congestive Heart Failure)

    Congestive heart failure, or CHF, is a very common, serious chronic condition and it’s a factor in 1 in 9 deaths. It's important to understand how your heart should work properly, and what happens when it doesn’t. 

  • Know Where to Go For Care

    A doctor—and mom—shares her tips for choosing the right care at the right time at the right place.

  • Making the Most of Your Doctor’s Appointment

    Your doctors’ appointments are an important and valuable time to connect with your doctor, share your perspective and information, and learn from your doctor’s expertise.  The best appointments happen when patients are very prepared.

  • Fighting Chronic Fatigue

    Chronic fatigue is a condition that causes someone to be extremely tired—to the point that they can’t function in their daily life.  It is also often misunderstood.

  • Emergency Preparedness for Patients with Health Problems

    Recent national disasters have caused many people to give more thought to emergency preparedness.  As September is Emergency Preparedness Month, it’s a great time to be thinking about being disaster ready.

  • Which Cancer Screenings You Need, and When, and WHY

    Cancer screening recommendations can be confusing for many people--in my 20 years of practicing primary care medicine for adults, thousands of patients have had questions about various cancer screenings. 

    In this article, I’ll focus on breast, prostate, lung, colon and skin cancer screenings.

  • An Urgent Need to Solve Your Annoying Problem – Overactive Bladder

    Do you experience any of the following?

    • Frequent urination
    • A persistent “urgent feeling” to urinate
    • Frequently waking up at night to urinate
    • Involuntary loss of urine
    If so, then you may have a urinary disorder known as Overactive Bladder (OAB).

  • Health Screenings Men Need - When & Why

    Michael Luy, MD, Internal Medicine, Deaconess Clinic Downtown

    Health screenings help doctors and other providers detect conditions at earlier, more treatable stages.
    Below I address various screenings that men need and at what ages, and share some additional details that can help men make informed decisions in partnership with their doctor.

  • The ABCs of Hepatitis

    Rubin Bahuva, MD, Gastroenterologist, Deaconess Clinic
    You’ve likely heard of hepatitis, and you may’ve even heard that some types of hepatitis are identified by letters A, B, & C. I’m glad to be writing about this, as so many people don’t know enough about hepatitis. It’s a serious issue, as hepatitis can cause serious illness and severe liver damage. Hepatitis C in particular is of concern, as more than 3 million Americans are infected—mostly “Baby Boomers.” Hepatitis C is actually the most common reason people need a liver transplant.

  • Myths & Facts about Hospice

    Cheryl Arnold, Hospice Manager, Deaconess VNA

    There are many questions and misunderstandings about hospice. Hospice can be an emotionally-charged topic, so knowing and understanding the facts about hospice care can help make conversations and decisions easier.

    Below, I address some of the most common myths, or incorrect beliefs, about hospice, and share additional information about why hospice is a wonderful service and resource for families when a loved one has a terminal condition. 

  • Preventing & Treating Osteoporosis

    Dr. Darla Grossman, Family Medicine, Deaconess Clinic West

    Osteoporosis, a condition in which bones become weak and brittle, is a common condition that can have serious consequences—including premature death from complications of broken bones.

  • Adult Vaccines

    Rebekah Basham, PA, Deaconess Clinic Mary Street

    Most people are aware pediatric vaccinations are very important and prevent serious diseases and related complications. However, people often forget there are adult vaccinations and boosters that are recommended to keep us healthy and prevent complications associated with certain infections. 

  • Health Benefits of Giving

    We all know that it’s “good” to give. Giving to charitable causes helps these organizations to continue functioning, providing services, and helping the community. But did you know that giving is actually good for your physical and mental health? 

  • Knowing the Signs of Alzheimer’s

    Aziz Mehrzad, MD, Deaconess Primary Care for Seniors

    More than 5 million people in the US suffer from Alzheimer’s Disease, and it is currently the 6th leading cause of death in this country—more than prostate and breast cancer combined.  

  • Fall Prevention: Steps to Make Falls Less Likely

    Deaconess Regional Trauma Team

    Lack of exercise can lead to weak legs, which increases the chance of falling. Exercise programs can increase strength and improve balance, making falls less likely.

  • Understanding Sepsis

    Ruston Stoltz MD, Family Medicine, Deaconess Clinic
    Sepsis is a serious complication of an infection, and it can happen to anyone.  Young or old, sepsis can be life threatening, as between ¼ and ½ of all individuals who develop sepsis will die from it.

  • 10 Choices to add years to your life

    Terry Gehlhausen, DO Deaconess Clinic Family Medicine, Oakland City
    People who follow a few simple steps to improve their health have less cancer and heart disease compared to other Americans, and their overall death rate is significantly reduced compared to other people under age 65. Here are ten choices you can make that will lead to a longer and healthier life:

  • COPD: Catching Your Breath

    By James Gutmann, MD  Family Medicine, Deaconess Clinic
    Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a lesser-known respiratory disease but is every bit as dangerous and difficult to manage as asthma.  COPD is an umbrella term for a grouping of specific symptoms that are incurable but manageable with appropriate treatment and lifestyle adjustments.  

  • Health Benefits of Tai Chi

    John Hufstedler, Deaconess Cross Pointe social work therapist and tai chi instructor
    Tai chi—you’ve probably heard of it and even seen it before, but you may not know exactly what it is. 

  • Tips for Aging Healthier & Happier

    Becky Richardville, MSW, LCSW, Care Coordinator at Deaconess Primary Care for Seniors
    Growing older is a privilege, but let’s face it—aging definitely brings about changes in our bodies and minds.

  • Shingles

    Dr. James Gutmann, Family Medicine Physician at Deaconess Clinic Mt. Pleasant
    In my 26 years of practicing family medicine, I have treated hundreds of patients with shingles and seen how painful and debilitating it can be. My goal in writing this article is to help people either learn how to potentially avoid shingles, OR help them know what to do if they get shingles. 

  • Single out Shingles: New Medical Advances for Combating Shingles

    Dr. James Gutman, Family Medicine Deaconess Clinic
    Chickenpox are nearly a childhood rite of passage…  Quarantine from others, being doused in calamine lotion and strong inclinations to take a hairbrush to those itchy miserable lesions.  The varicella virus (or chickenpox) primes patients to develop herpes zoster later on in life.

  • Who Decides, and When? - Understanding Advance Directives.

    Peggy Matacale, Chaplain, Deaconess Religious Life, and Candace Foster, Deaconess Privacy Officer
    Here at Deaconess, patients and family members are making decisions on others’ behalf every single day.  Sometimes the situation is sudden, such as after a car crash.  In other situations, a family member has been in a gradual decline. But in all circumstances it can be a difficult time, so having the right information, with the desired decision-makers, is very important.

  • 10 Choices to Add Years to Your Life

    Terry Gehlhausen, DO Deaconess Clinic Family Medicine
    People who follow a few simple steps to improve their health have less cancer and heart disease compared to other Americans, and their overall death rate is significantly reduced compared to other people under age 65. Here are ten choices you can make that will lead to a longer and healthier life:

  • Your Diet and Your Hearing

    Ann B. Raibley, Certified Clinical Audiologist
    Protecting your ears from hazardous noise and keeping ear infections at bay are fundamental ways to minimize hearing loss. However, a healthy lifestyle with exercise and a balanced diet can also help maintain hearing health.

  • Alcohol and Seniors

    Dr. Errin Weisman,  Family Medicine

    When does drinking become a problem? The aging population is not immune to alcohol abuse.  For men and women 65 years of age or older, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse considers one drink per day to be the maximum amount for “moderate” alcohol use. 

  • Fall Prevention

    Kim Childers, MSW, LSW Care Coordinator at Deaconess Primary Care for Seniors

    Complications due to falls are the leading cause of death from injury in seniors age 65 and older. Prevention of falls in the home is so important. You’re protecting someone’s vitality, independence and life. 

  • Medicare 101 - Part One Two

    Scott Burke, Deaconess Mature Health Center and Shirley Powers, Deaconess Senior Services/Helping Hand Specialist 

    There is a lot of confusion related to Medicare and Medicare supplement plans. This two part series answers several of the questions you or your family members might have.

  • Medicare 101 - Part One

    Scott Burke, Deaconess Mature Health Center and Shirley Powers, Deaconess Senior Services/Helping Hand Specialist 

    There is a lot of confusion related to Medicare and Medicare supplement plans. This two part series answers several of the questions you or your family members might have.

  • Defining Arthritis

     Dr. Mujtaba Tapal, MD, Rheumatologist, Deaconess Clinic Downtown

    Arthritis is a very common condition, affecting as many as half of all Americans in their lifetime. In my more than 20 years of practice, I’ve seen thousands of patients who are suffering from arthritis. It can be a painful and debilitating disease. However, arthritis is a broad term that describes one of several conditions.

  • Shingles - Painful and Preventable. Patient & Physician Perspectives Part 1

    Shingles: A Patient’s Perspective – Part One
    Many people don’t know that about one in three people in the US will develop shingles during their lifetime, and older people are at the greatest risk for developing shingles. In fact, half of all people who live to age 85 will develop shingles at some point.

  • It's Raining Now! What do you do when someone you love is not doing as well as they used to.

    Content Provided by Deaconess VNA Plus Personal Care Services​

    Realizing that someone you love is not functioning as well at home as they used to can come as a shock; discovering what in-home care costs can be even more surprising, particularly since many people believe that Medicare or traditional health insurance will pay for all types of assistance.

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