Keyword: geriatrics

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HER2 breast cancer

‘Soft’ chemotherapy plus targeted treatment spell new hope for elderly patients

Avoidance of side-effects of chemotherapy is particularly important in the elderly, but finding the balance between reduced toxicity and maximum effectiveness is not always easy. A trial carried out by the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer, published in The Lancet Oncology, shows that, in older patients with HER2 positive metastatic breast cancer (an aggressive breast…

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Keep on moving

Just 4,000 steps a day to better brain health

Walking more than 4,000 steps a day can improve attention and mental skills in adults ages 60 and older, according to UCLA research published December 12 in a preprint edition of the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. Various studies have found that physical activity is important in preventing cognitive decline and dementia in older adults. Cognitive decline occurs when people start having…

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Christmas isolation

Holiday loneliness can be harmful to seniors’ health

The holidays are supposed to be a happy time of the year, but many isolated seniors often are left feeling lonely — which can be harmful to their health. Loneliness is linked to serious medical conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease, stroke and heart disease as well as a higher risk of premature death. But loneliness can be easily overlooked as a health risk because healthcare providers…

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It's dangerous to go alone

Why social isolation can bring a greater risk of illness

Social isolation has been linked to a wide range of health problems, as well as a shorter lifespan in humans and other animals. In fact, during a U.S. Senate hearing on aging issues this spring, a representative for the Gerontological Society of America urged lawmakers to support programs that help older adults stay connected to their communities, stating that social isolation is a “silent…

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Civilisation Diseases breaking economic growth

More than 63% of all deaths in the world are caused by so- called non-communicable diseases. In the WHO-region of Europe it’s even higher – 86%. The direct and indirect economic costs are huge – to the point of posing a real threat to growth in crisis-hit economies. Therapy alone is not enough, World Bank strategist Dr. Armin Fidler told the European Health Forum Gastein. Effective…

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Lack of dignity for older patients

The Dignity in Practice study followed a number of national reports showing that the NHS does not always treat older people with care, dignity and respect and that the lack of dignified care provided in acute NHS Trusts is a major source of complaint.

Transcatheter aortic valve implants bear risks

Every year thousands of patients with less than one year to live are denied a heart valve replacement because they are too frail to undergo surgery. These patients tend to be over 75 years of age and suffering from multiple health problems, such as respiratory conditions that preclude general anaesthesia, end-stage failure of liver or kidneys, or a history of coronary surgery. Two years ago they…

Blood test to predict rheumatoid arthritis

Researchers from University Hospital in Umea, Sweden, have identified several cytokines, cytokine-related factors, and chemokines that increase significantly prior to rheumatoid arthritis (RA) disease onset. These findings confirm those of earlier studies which suggest that the risk of developing RA can be predicted and disease progression may be prevented. Complete findings of this study are…

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Neuroimaging Technique Identifies Patients at Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease in Healthy Brains

How the brain changes with age is not well-characterized and even less is known about the factors influencing the rate of brain aging. Brain imaging can offer a window into risk assessment into for diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. A recent study demonstrated that genetic risk is expressed in the brains of even those who are healthy, but carry some risk for AD.

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The role of nutrition in the elderly

At the European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) congress in Vienna, experts highlighted the important relationship between nutrition and functionality in the elderly. They discussed the importance of an effective and flexible screening tool for the measurement of nutritional status, the impact of nutritional status on fall and fracture risk, and the role physical exercise…

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The 11th EAPC Congress

Faced with death, what are the wishes of terminally ill patients? Does a request for euthanasia disappear with good palliative care? How invasive should medicine be at this final stage of life? Is comprehensive palliative care financially affordable? Can studies on those who are dying be ethically justified? Difficult questions, but all posed during the 11th European Association of Palliative…

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