Latest Senior Health News


Many Older Americans With Heart Failure Take 10 or More Meds

Many Older Americans With Heart Failure Take 10 or More MedsTUESDAY, Oct. 13, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- When older people hospitalized for heart failure are sent home, they are often given a whopping 10 medications to take for a variety of conditions. But is this "polypharmacy" practice necessary, or does it just place a bigger burden on already frail patients? It's not a question so much of the quantity of the medications, but whether the medications patients are taking are the right ones for them, said senior study author Dr. Parag Goyal, a geriatric cardiologist at NewYork-Presbyterian in New York City. "It's not just that we're not starting the right medications, there may be situations where we're not stopping the wrong medications as well," Goyal said. "I think we need to look at the medication that older adults with heart failure take...

COVID-19 Taking Huge Toll in Excess U.S. Deaths

13 October 2020
COVID-19 Taking Huge Toll in Excess U.S. DeathsTUESDAY, Oct. 13, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- A pair of new studies assert that the U.S. response to the COVID-19 pandemic has been a disaster, causing more deaths than thought and prolonging Americans' suffering more than any other country. The United States experienced a 20% increase over expected deaths between March and August 2020, with more than 225,500 people needlessly dying, said the lead researcher on the first study, Dr. Steven Woolf. He's director of the Virginia Commonwealth University Center on Society and Health, in Richmond. All of those excess deaths can be laid at the feet of the COVID-19 pandemic and the inadequate U.S. response to it, Woolf said. According to Dr. Amesh Adalja, a senior scholar with the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in Baltimore, "The...

Music Classes Strike a Chord in Kids' Brain Development:...

9 October 2020
Music Classes Strike a Chord in Kids` Brain Development: StudyFRIDAY, Oct. 9, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Learning to play a musical instrument helps fine-tune kids' brains, researchers say. In a new study, 40 children (aged 10 to 13) performed memory and attention tasks while their brain activity was monitored with functional MRI. This type of imaging scan detects small changes in blood flow within the brain. Twenty of the children played an instrument, had completed at least two years of lessons, practiced at least two hours a week and regularly played in an orchestra or ensemble. The other 20 children had no musical training other than in the school curriculum. The two groups had no differences in reaction time. But the musically trained children did better on the memory task, according to the report published online Oct. 8 in the journal...

Overdose Deaths From Cocaine Rising Dramatically

7 October 2020
Overdose Deaths From Cocaine Rising DramaticallyWEDNESDAY, Oct. 7, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- While opioids were grabbing the headlines, cocaine overdose deaths in the United States have marched upward, nearly tripling over five years, a new government report shows. After a period of stability, cocaine-induced deaths rose by about 27% per year, on average, from 2013 through 2018, researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. "While much attention has been given to the increase in drug overdose deaths involving opioids, it's also important to recognize that deaths involving other drugs, such as cocaine, have also increased in recent years," said Dr. Holly Hedegaard, lead researcher and injury epidemiologist at the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). In 2018, those most likely to die from...

Could Coffee Reduce Parkinson's Risk?

5 October 2020
Could Coffee Reduce Parkinson`s Risk?MONDAY, Oct. 5, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Caffeine may reduce the risk of Parkinson's disease in people who have a gene mutation associated with the movement disorder, researchers report. "These results are promising and encourage future research exploring caffeine and caffeine-related therapies to lessen the chance that people with this gene develop Parkinson's," said study author Dr. Grace Crotty, of Massachusetts General Hospital. "It's also possible that caffeine levels in the blood could be used as a biomarker to help identify which people with this gene will develop the disease, assuming caffeine levels remain relatively stable," Crotty added in a news release from the journal Neurology. The study was published online Sept. 30 in the journal. Previous studies have shown that...

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