SENIORS STAY AHEAD OF HEALTH ISSUES

Feb 6th, 2013 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

Health Care: Making Wise Choices

Seniors do not have to live with difficult health issues. If you are not getting satisfactory health care, you need to get a referral for another opinion.  Seek until you find.  Living with difficult health issues is unnecessary when there are options for addressing those issues.

Let’s look at a few:

Intestinal conditions:

Living with intestinal, colon and related discomforts became, for me, a frustrating and repetitive condition.  I was finally referred to a specialist in gastroenterology. With his strong opposition to  relying on prednisone, the prescribing of only two other meds, and a patient following of my condition for a couple of weeks, the condition was readily addressed and I am now free of the plague of diarrhea and the need of pred.  I am down to two pills a day.  Since I am not a physician, I won’t go into the particulars.  What I can tell you is it isn’t necessary to live with difficult health issues.

Testosterone concerns.

Be wary of advertisements, especially on television, which tout the use of certain testosterone applications or medications.  Misuse, overuse, unguided use of testosterone may create more difficulty than cure.

Again, as in the aforementioned, consult a competent urologist.  Be sure you have counsel that deals with the realities of your situation.  Do not look for short cuts.

Understanding your issues, obtaining an accurate diagnosis and following competent medical advice is a necessary and critical strategy.  Have a prostate exam.  Know your numbers (PSA).   Be faithful in having regular exams.  If your numbers are excessively high, begin discussing options for addressing your condition.

Have regular physical examinations.

Regular checkups to keep you apprised of any circumstances that may reveal unknown health conditions amounts to a mandate for all seniors.  Men, in particular, and especially those who tout their having never had an exam or visiting a physician regularly are not heroes, they are lacking in wisdom.

Being Overweight and at Risk for Diabetes

Just because you seem to be in reasonably good health does not allow permission to ignore warning signs.  Being overweight and at risk of diabetes, particularly if it has shown up in your family DNA, is strong reason to stay ahead of the game.  Do not ignore your need to know your own circumstances.

Making the Case for Second Opinions

My health history has included having had four corneal transplants.  I inherited a congenital disease that affected my vision (Keratoconus or cone shaped cornea).  And I also had a stroke in my left eye.  The medical opinion had indicated that I would not be able to recover vision in that eye following the stroke. For various reasons, I consulted a second ophthalmologist. He determined the major problem was the old graft from transplant surgery in the 1960s; it was in need of replacement, and he recommended another transplant in my left eye.

Amazed that such an option was available, and after almost a full year of being followed closely since the transplant, I have hopes of having major improvement in vision in my left eye.  A part of that process has included a close tending of that eye on a regular basis. We are encouraged. The second opinion made the difference.

Respecting the Wonders of Modern Medicine

Aging calls our attention to a variety of circumstances that may foretell conditions that need further addressing.  Assuming that we are as smart as physicians and specialists is not a wise course.  Staying apprised of health issues that may portend the need for further analysis is a wisely recommended course of action for seniors.



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