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Editor's e-Note
For patients experiencing acute pain following surgery, methadone may provide relief in place of opioids, which are typically prescribed for the relief of pain after surgical procedures. Administration of long-acting methadone during the procedure resulted in the need for less oral opioid medication and better pain management following surgery.

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
Methadone May Reduce Need for Opioids Following Surgery

Patients undergoing spinal fusion surgery who are treated with methadone during the procedure require significantly less intravenous and oral opioids to manage postoperative pain, according to a new study published in the May issue of the journal Anesthesiology.

“This is a new application for an old pain medication that offers hope for reducing the development of acute pain in the first few days after surgery, as well as chronic postoperative pain and the need for opioid medications following discharge from the hospital,” says Glenn S. Murphy, MD, lead study author and physician anesthesiologist at NorthShore University Health System in Evanston, Illinois. “There is currently an opioid crisis in the United States, and intraoperative methadone offers promise as a drug that can reduce the need for these pain medications during recovery.”

Methadone is a unique long-acting opioid that is typically used to relieve severe pain in people who are in need of medication around the clock for extended periods of time, and in those who cannot be treated with other medications. It is also used to prevent withdrawal symptoms in patients addicted to opiate drugs, specifically heroin.

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AGS Conference Wrap-Up
American Geriatrics Society Going Strong at 75
By Barbara Worthington

This year’s American Geriatrics Society (AGS) Annual Scientific Meeting focused on the celebration of the society’s diamond jubilee. One of the highlights of the observation was the presentation by James T. Pacala, MD, MS, AGSF, who reviewed the 75-year history of AGS from its founding through the years to the present. His clever chronicling of the society reminisced through songs, styles, and headlines of the decades since the society’s 1942 launch, complete with changes in headgear and hairstyles symbolizing the trends characteristic of the various decades.

He spoke of some of the pioneers in geriatrics care and the giants in the field who advanced geriatrics education and practice since 1942. He recounted the changes that the introduction of Medicare and Medicaid produced and recognized the evolution of interprofessional geriatrics care that now includes not only physicians but also nurses, physician assistants, pharmacists, and others. With nearly 6,000 current members, the AGS encompasses providers in all 50 states.

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In this e-Newsletter
Other Geriatrics News
The Cost of Not Taking Your Medicine
It’s estimated that medication nonadherence results in about 125,000 deaths and 10% of hospitalizations annually, according to an article in The New York Times.

Younger People Feel the Stress of Alzheimer's Caregiving
According to an article in Rochester, New York’s Democrat & Chronicle, caregivers of all ages undergo particular stress in managing the care of loved ones with dementia.

How to Help Alzheimer’s Patients Enjoy Life, Not Just ‘Fade Away’
An article at Kaiser Health News online offers strategies for giving purpose and meaning to Alzheimer’s patients’ lives rather than simply allowing the disease to take its course.

Wasted: America's Other Drug Problem
Incredible amounts of expensive drugs are wasted at nursing homes across the United States, according to an article in The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Tech & Tools
Safety Glo Bedside Hand Rail
The Safety Glo Bedside Hand Rail is a highly stable balance-assist bedside rail with multiple height adjustment options. The patented SafetyGrip provides a strong and stable grip. For optimal safety, the unique gentle glow assists users to locate the grip, gain balance, and gather their bearings. The rail promotes secure movement onto and off of the bed, assuring heightened user confidence and safety. It fits all bed widths and adjusts for mattress depth. Learn more »

SafeGuardian’s Care Caller
CareCaller technology, available to hospitals, health care organizations, and home health providers, is designed to increase patient communication and reduce avoidable and unnecessary patient readmissions. It provides patients direct call access to a visiting nurse, home health provider, or a 24/7 nurse assist hotline. Patients can utilize the call line to ask a question about their medical conditions, confirm medications, schedule/reschedule follow-up appointments, report a worsening condition, or request urgent nurse assistance. The Care Caller offers a large SOS button to make direct contact via phone call or text message to as many as five preprogrammed provider numbers. Once activated, it immediately connects a patient with a home health care professional using the built-in two-way speakerphone. If necessary, a nurse can call a patient’s CareCaller directly in cases in which a patient has no phone or has limited mobility. Learn more »
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Featured Jobs
The nation's top employers and recruiters of geriatric care professionals advertise in Today's Geriatric Medicine magazine and post their job openings on Check out the most recent opportunities that have been submitted by employers across the country!

Geriatric Hospitalist—Legacy Health, Portland, OR
SNF Physicians, Hospitalists, Comprehensive Care Physicians
HealthCare Partners, LA/Orange County, CA
Geriatrician—Reading Health System, West Reading, PA
Adult Psychiatrist—Reading Health Physician Network, PA
Geriatrician—UHS Medical Group, Upstate, NY
Geriatrician—University of Kansas Health System
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