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Seniors

Wondering? Questions About Healthy Aging: Urinary Incontinence

Questions-Healthy-Aging-Urinary-Incont-2From the 2011 Fall Senior Circle publication

Q: I’m so embarrassed. Sometimes I have to go and can hardly make it to the bathroom without peeing my pants. What can I do?

A: “I see many patients with this same complaint,” said Namir Shaba, DO, urologist with Lakeshore Urology. “Just because this is common, people shouldn’t accept it as a natural process of aging.” Shaba explains that this form of incontinence could be due to many causes, including an infection, overactive bladder, cystocele (a dropped bladder) in women, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) in men, or a number of other anatomical changes. According to Shaba, the first step is to get a urinalysis and have a good pelvic exam, both of which your primary physician can perform. If you need further evaluation, your physician may send you to a urologist. Infections can be treated with antibiotics, an overactive bladder can usually be treated by medication, and other anatomical changes can be repaired through surgery to restore normal function.

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Answers to Guide Your Knee Needs

Senior-Circle-Knee-Needs-1From the 2011 Fall Senior Circle publication

According to the American Hospital Association, we will see a sharp increase in the number of knee replacement surgeries as Baby Boomers age and enjoy their later years.

So to learn more about the types of knee replacements options offered today, we sat down with Orthopedic Surgeon Bruce Thoma, MD, for a brief interview.

Q: What’s the difference between a partial and total knee replacement?

A: A partial knee replacement is more localized and less invasive. Because of this, patients typically recover faster from a partial knee replacement than a total knee, yet the complete knee replacement can solve more problems for a greater number of people.

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Porter Health System’s Senior Circle Program Presents “How to Reduce Your Risk of Heart Failure”

Senior_Circle_Logo_porterPorter Health System’s Senior Circle program will present “How to Reduce Your Risk of Heart Failure” at Noon on Thursday, July 21, at the Valparaiso Family YMCA, 1201 Cumberland Crossing Drive, Valparaiso. The program is free and a light lunch will be served.

During the presentation, Cardiologist Michael Wheat, MD, and Terri Pugh, RN, will discuss how to recognize the symptoms of heart failure. Participants will learn how to reduce their own risks, as well as more about the importance of a heart-healthy diet.

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Wondering? Questions About Healthy Aging: Pneumonia Vaccine

Senior-Circle-Questions-About-Healthy-Aging-VaccineFrom the 2011 Spring Senior Circle publication

Q: “I just turned 65 and my doctor recommended that I get a pneumonia shot. Do I really need one?”

A: “The pneumonia vaccine is a good idea for patients 65 and older and for others at higher risk, such as those with chronic cardiovascular disease, diabetes, asthma, COPD or a compromised immune system,” said Geraldine Feria, MD, with Wanatah Primary Care. Consider that about 10,000 people die each year because of invasive bacterial infections.

As we get older, or if we have other health issues, a simple pneumonia that would ordinarily be treated as an outpatient can become more severe, causing patients to end up in the Intensive Care Unit on a ventilator or with a more invasive infection,” said Feria.

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Triad Presents Empower Our Parents Educational Forum to Benefit Those Whose Parents Are Aging

porter-co-triad-logoPorter County Triad, together with gold sponsors Home Instead Senior Care, Life Care Center of The Willows, Rittenhouse Senior Living of Valparaiso, and Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, will present “Empower Our Parents” for individuals who are facing the prospect of assisting their parents through the journey of aging.

The educational forum will take place from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m., April 14 at the Village Park Enrichment Center at Banta, 605 Beech St., Valparaiso. Reservations are requested by calling (219) 462-1301. The program is free and open to the public; however, senior services businesses who wish to sponsor or have a table may do so with a donation made to Triad. For sponsorship information, please call (219) 462-1301.

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Hebron Center Site Manager Connects to Area Seniors

Josephine-Purevich-croppedJosephine Purevich stays connected to the community as site manager of the Hebron Senior Center by keeping the place humming with activities and helping fellow seniors feel at home.

Purevich coordinates speakers and health awareness events along with games, Meals on Wheels lunches and the annual Christmas party.

The center is a place to socialize, play different style cards, games, Bingo,” she said. “We have speakers in to discuss disease awareness and elderly nutrition.”

Beyond blood sugar and blood pressure monitoring, Purevich looks to boost senior health by bringing yoga to the center after seeing the funny side of exercise. Seniors were recently exposed to laughing yoga, which combines laughter and breathing, after Triad sponsored an expert from Indianapolis. While she is still on the hunt for a laughing yoga expert, she has found an RN to lead yoga, which can be done seated.

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Wondering? Questions About Healthy Aging: Shingles Vaccine

Shingles-Vaccine-Senior-Circle-2011From the January 2011 Senior Circle publication

Q: I've read about the new shingles vaccine. Do I need it?

A: "If you're 60 or older, you should consider getting the vaccine," according to Pranjal Patel, MD, a family practitioner with Lake Porter Medical Group. "The vaccine may help you avoid getting shingles or prevent a recurrence of the painful skin rash caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox," he said. Shingles is most common in people 50 years old or older, those with medical conditions that keep the immune system from working properly, or those receiving immunosuppressive drugs.

The shingles vaccine, Zostavax, is given as a single injection, usually in the upper arm and typically covered by insurance. Zostavax contains a weakened chickenpox virus (varicella-zoster virus), helping to stimulate your immune system. Studies show that the shingles vaccine reduces the risk of developing shingles by about 50 percent. Findings also show that the shingles vaccine helps people who develop shingles to have shorter periods of nerve pain called postherpetic neuralgia (PHN), which can be extreme and last from 30 days to many months, said Patel.

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