Medicare open enrollment thru Dec. 7

By Beacon
Posted on October 27, 2016

It’s time for your annual checkup — of your Medicare plan.  Medicare’s annual open enrollment period started Oct. 15 and runs through Dec. 7. This is the time of year you can make changes to your plans.Review your current Medicare Part D Prescription Drug and, if you have it, your Medicare Part C Advantage Plan coverage to see if you can lower your costs or find a... READ MORE

Avoiding delirium during a hospital stay

By Beverly Merz
Posted on October 25, 2016

My mother was lucid and alert when she was hospitalized for pneumonia. But by the middle of the first night, she was wondering how she had ended up at a “hotel” that allowed strangers to enter her room at all hours. The second night, she wandered into the corridor, slipped and fractured a hip. She didn’t leave the hospital alive.Her story, though extreme, is sadly typical. ... READ MORE

Reaping benefits from simple meditation

By Dr. Howard LeWine
Posted on October 07, 2016

Q: I have been hearing a lot more about mindfulness recently. Given my hectic life, it sounds like I might benefit. But I am not sure how to start. Any suggestions?A: Mindfulness is the practice of purposely focusing your attention on the present moment — and accepting it without judgment.Mindfulness meditation is an excellent way to get started. In mindfulness meditation, you learn... READ MORE

The truth about tequila and bone health

By Dr. Robert H. Shmerling,
Posted on October 06, 2016

“Tequila could reverse osteoporosis!” “Drinking tequila is good for your bones!” “Have a third margarita — because tequila’s great for your bones!”Talk about misleading headlines! These are prime examples.It’s true that a newly published study found that a substance in tequila  — called agave tequilana, or tequila agave... READ MORE

New technique depicts brain synapses

By Lauran Neergaard
Posted on October 03, 2016

The brain’s nerve cells communicate by firing messages to each other through junctions called synapses. Problems with those connections are linked to disorders like Alzheimer’s and epilepsy.Now Yale University researchers have developed a way to picture synapses in living brains. The technique, using PET scans, is highly experimental, but it raises the possibility of one day... READ MORE

FDA approves new stent that dissolves

By Matthew Perrone
Posted on September 28, 2016

A medical implant that slowly dissolves into the body could be the answer to long-standing safety concerns with devices used to treat clogged arteries.But not so fast, say experts.Abbott Laboratories’ newly-approved Absorb stent comes with one important caveat: it hasn’t yet been shown to be safer than older metal implants. The Food and Drug Administration approved the... READ MORE

How regular exercise may cut cancer risk

By Dr. Howard LeWine
Posted on September 19, 2016

Q: It makes sense that regular exercise helps prevent heart disease. But I have also read that it might help prevent cancer. What’s the reason?A: Many studies show that people who are physically active are less likely to develop cancer. Such associations don’t prove that exercise prevents cancer. But there are also several potential biological explanations for a protective... READ MORE

Where to donate hearing aids, glasses, etc.

By Jim Miller
Posted on September 14, 2016

Dear Savvy Senior: Where are some good places to donate old hearing aids, eyeglasses and mobility equipment? My uncle passed away a few months ago and left behind a bunch of useful aids that could surely help someone else.                             Searching Nephew Dear Searching: Donating old, unused assistive living aids and/or medical equipment is a great way to... READ MORE

Behavior changes may precede dementia

By Lauran Neergaard
Posted on September 07, 2016

Memory loss may not always be the first warning sign that dementia is brewing — changes in behavior or personality might be an early clue.Researchers recently outlined a syndrome called “mild behavioral impairment” that may be a harbinger of Alzheimer’s or other dementias, and proposed a checklist of symptoms to alert doctors and families.Losing interest in favorite... READ MORE

Help contribute to breast cancer research

By Beacon
Posted on September 01, 2016

Clinical trials are one of the major factors responsible for the gains made in breast cancer survival over the past 30 years.Thanks to such research studies, improvements have also been made in quality of life for people living with cancer, as researchers have been able to identify more targeted treatments that can help limit many cancer therapy side effects.The Sidney Kimmel... READ MORE