College students help aging patients who are hospitalized

Valentina Harmjanz often tapped into music on her smartphone to connect with older patients she visited at William P. Clements Jr. University Hospital. The UT Southwestern medical student met with patients as part of the Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP), a joint effort between UTSW and the Hobson Wildenthal Honors College at the University of Texas at Dallas.

Poor sleep can lead to long-term health problems for older adults, UTSW specialists say

It’s a common misconception that older adults need less sleep than those younger, but many get fewer hours due to insomnia and various health problems, including sleep apnea and heart trouble. In addition to a reduced quality of life, long-term health consequences of poor sleep include high blood pressure, weight gain, stroke, heart attack, diabetes, memory problems, and even increased risk of death, said Deborah Freeland, M.D., Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine and a member of UTSW’s Division of Geriatric Medicine.

Awareness vital to improving Parkinson’s patients’ quality of life, UTSW neurologist says

About 1 million people in the United States have Parkinson’s disease, a progressive neurological disorder that ranks second to Alzheimer’s among the most common neurodegenerative diseases. While many tend to associate Parkinson’s with hand tremors, it can cause a broad range of symptoms, affecting both motor and nonmotor functions.

Cedars-Sinai Offers Program to Catch Older Adults Before They Fall

Falls and broken bones are common among older adults, but they’re not a natural part of aging. That’s why Cedars-Sinai geriatricians created a bone health and falls risk consultation program to catch at-risk people before they break a bone or help them avoid another fracture in the future.

Cedars-Sinai Experts to Present New Research and Discuss Advances in Care for Older Adults

Cedars-Sinai geriatrics experts will present their latest advances in research and care in person at the annual scientific meeting of the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) in Orlando May 12-14, sharing innovations to improve both the quality of patient care and quality of life for older adults.

Common Class of Drugs Linked to Increased Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease

UC San Diego researchers report that a class of drugs used for a broad array of conditions, from allergies and colds to hypertension and urinary incontinence, may be associated with an increased risk of cognitive decline, particularly in older adults at greater risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

Caring for Those Most Vulnerable to COVID-19 Requires Vigilance

Early reports suggest the case fatality rate for those over 80, which constitutes nearly half of nursing home residents, is more than 15 percent. In areas where there is a shortage of ICU beds and respirators, even the most carefully thought out ethical approaches to rationing these resources will place older patients at a lower priority. Nursing homes must be prepared to manage patients who have had or have COVID-19 infection.