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August 2007

“Water for Elephants”: A Story With The Perfect Ending

I thought you blog readers would be interested in my take on the bestseller "Water for Elephants." I loved the circus story, but since I wrote this for my caregiving blog on Our Alzheimer's, I concentrated on the nursing home storyline.

Here's how I begin -

From Water for Elephants:

"Either there's been an accident or there's roadwork, because a gaggle of old ladies is glued to the window at the end of the hall like children or jailbirds. They're spidery and frail, their hair as fine as mist. Most of them are a good decade younger than me, and this astounds me. Even as your body betrays you, your mind denies it."

Continue reading "“Water for Elephants”: A Story With The Perfect Ending" »

Elder Care & Child Care: Family Leave is Needed for Both

"What impressed me, in particular, were the families we heard from that have both elder-care and child-care responsibilities. You could really see the increased elder-care responsibilities."

The above quote is from an article titled, "Labor Department assesses concerns about family leave act:
Officials review feedback from workers and firms."  Marcia Pounds wrote the South Florida Sun-Sentinel article. This is subject that is finally getting much needed attention.

Continue reading "Elder Care & Child Care: Family Leave is Needed for Both" »

Health care through the 'Net: Medical Advice Site Offers an Ophthalmologist

Here's a press release of interest:


AAO Marks 14th Medical Institution to Join MedHelp

SAN FRANCISCO - MedHelp, the oldest and most active online
health community connecting  people and medical experts online, and the
American Academy of Ophthalmology, the world's largest association of
eye physicians and surgeons, today announced a partnership to bring the
finest eye care specialists in the field to the Web to personally answer
website members and visitor questions. Eye doctors and surgeons from
AAO's membership will now answer inquiries and provide personalized
medical information and advice on MedHelp.org."

Check out Medhelp.org

Elder Guardians and Mediation: Caregiving Options

Most of us know families that do not get along at all. Sometimes, it's because the adult children remember nothing bfrom their childhood but abuse. Sometimes it's because the adult children abuse drugs and/or alcohol and their addiction keeps them from interacting with their elders, in a healhy way.

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Geriatricians: The Un-sung Heros of Medicine

From Mysa.com (San Antonio) comes an inspiring article by Melissa Fletcher Stoeltje, Express-News Staff Writer, titled "Palliative-care doctor teaches other physicians to provide comfort as well as treatment."

A few posts back, I linked to my blog on the geriatrician shortage. Here's a terrific article that puts a face on a woman devoted to this unglamorous specialty. Well written and insightful, this article is a gem:

Continue reading "Geriatricians: The Un-sung Heros of Medicine" »

Elder Care and Politics: Let the Families Win

I received a press release from Senator Amy Klobuchar's office (D-MN) which addresses many elder care concerns. The press release wasn't a good format for a blog, however Rochester's Post-Bulletin ran an opinion piece which covers many of the elder care issues that were mentioned in the press release. I'm linking, below,to that Op-Ed piece.

Continue reading "Elder Care and Politics: Let the Families Win" »

Alzheimer's training: Who Has Time?

Robert T. DeMarco's blog is particularly welcome, as it give the male perspective on caregiving. More and more men are taking on that role. When I wrote Minding Our Elders, I wanted to include men's stories. I thought I'd have to really hunt for them, but it wasn't hard. I ended up with a 25 percent ratio of men to women - and have since found out that is pretty accurate in the caregiving world at large.

Continue reading "Alzheimer's training: Who Has Time?" »

Election 2008: Focus on elder issues

It tickles me to see how elder issues are coming into the political spotlight. For so long, during my caregiving years and during the time I was trying to get Minding Our Elders published, I was told (or sometimes it was just implied) that this issue wasn't of mass interest. In other words, it was "sexy" enough to sell.

Continue reading "Election 2008: Focus on elder issues" »

Caregiver Syndrome: We've got a name

Here's a must read: Special to CNN: "Exhaustion, anger of caregiving get a name," by By Andree LeRoy, M.D.

"BOSTON, Massachusetts (CNN) -- Do you take care of someone in your family with a chronic medical illness or dementia? Have you felt depression, anger or guilt? Has your health deteriorated since taking on the responsibility of caregiving? If your answer is yes to any one of these, you may be suffering from caregiver stress.This condition is increasingly being referred to as "caregiver syndrome" by the medical community because of its numerous consistent signs and symptoms. In the pamphlet, 'Caring for Persons with Dementia,' Dr. Jean Posner, a neuropsychiatrist in Baltimore, Maryland, referred to caregiver syndrome as, 'a debilitating condition brought on by unrelieved, constant caring for a person with a chronic illness or dementia.'"

Read full article: