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Editor's e-Note
A recent brain scan study indicates that alteplase, a drug that breaks up blood clots in the brains of stroke patients, could potentially be used more pervasively yet without increased risk. The drug is the sole treatment for a stroke caused by a blocked blood vessel in the brain.

In addition to reading our e-newsletter, be sure to visit Today’s Geriatric Medicine’s website at, where you’ll find news and information that’s relevant and reliable. We welcome your feedback at Follow Today’s Geriatric Medicine on Facebook and Twitter, too.

— Barbara Worthington, editor
e-News Exclusive
Stroke Patients Benefit From Clot-Busting Drug

A drug that breaks up blood clots in the brains of stroke patients could be used more widely than at present without increased risk, a brain scan study suggests.

It had previously been thought that giving the drug to people with signs of early damage in the brain caused by a stroke would increase the chances of their suffering a bleed on the brain, which can be fatal.

The study is the first to show that early tissue damage seen in brain scans does not necessarily indicate an increased risk of bleeding. Patients with early tissue damage from strokes are less likely to make a full recovery, but they can benefit from receiving the drug, researchers say.

The drug, called alteplase, is the only treatment for a stroke caused by a blocked blood vessel in the brain.

Full story »
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Lifestyle Influences Brain Health
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Treating the Elder Life Crisis
Elder life crisis, which often manifests in older patients in their later years, is characterized by feelings of loneliness, helplessness, and boredom. Physicians must learn to identify and address the condition. Read more »

Embracing Residents’ Sexuality
Within health care settings and senior living communities, sexuality can be regarded as a delicate topic, but discussions on the topic can help staff anticipate residents' sexual needs. Read more »
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In this e-Newsletter
Tech & Tools
Kanega Watch
UnaliWear announces the market preview of its first wearable technology that provides advanced support for seniors to guard against wandering and provide support for falls and medication reminders. The wearable Kanega watch is the first of its kind to use an easy speech interface rather than buttons, use cellular and Wi-Fi technology, and update medical information without human input. The watch goes wherever the wearer goes and has its own technology so no smartphone or home-based system is needed. Kanega’s technology helps prevent the wearer from getting lost while driving or walking. It also makes a connection with pharmacies to automatically bring nightly medication updates into the watch. It features a continuous welfare check and fall detection. During an accident or medical emergency that leaves the wearer unable to move or speak, the watch notifies the monitoring operators for help. Learn more »

Avancen MOD Corporation has introduced the MOD Medication On Demand Device to the postacute sphere. The bedside oral pain medication dispensing system has been used in acute care and involves a physician prescribing medication and the device being programmed. The wireless patient-controlled oral pain management system provides hospitals, health care professionals, and patients a better way to manage pain. The wireless device delivers multiple benefits to users and providers, including improved quality of care and increased patient satisfaction. Patient pain scores, dates of dispensing, and reassessment scores are stored in a database. The system allows patients to retain better control of their own pain management and eases nursing workflow, the company says. Learn more »
Geriatrics Consult With Rosemary Laird, MD
Managing Geriatric Syndromes: Falls

The baby boomers are coming—and bringing their geriatric syndromes with them.

Did you know that each day 8,000 baby boomers turn 65? Most primary care providers are aware of this or at least sense it from their own aging patient panels. The boomers are here, and with their increased ranks comes more and more pressure on physicians to find time to provide comprehensive primary care. As the number of elderly increases, it becomes an even greater challenge to address their often complex needs.

A recent article from Medical Clinics of North America provides a terrific review of the most common multifactorial problems that affect seniors, the so-called geriatric syndromes.1 In the outpatient setting, the syndromes most often encountered include falls, cognitive impairment, urinary incontinence, and frailty.

Continue reading »
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