Category Archives: Health and Medicine

Caring for the Caregiver: Fight Caregiver Stress and Prevent Burnout

8232Caring for a loved one who is seriously ill is never easy. More than 80% of caregivers are either the spouse or child of the loved one they are caring for.

Unfortunately, stress among caregivers is extremely common. Caregivers often try to do everything by themselves, which leaves them worn out. They are sometimes referred to as the “hidden patient” because they spend so much time caring for their loved one that they neglect their own health. If the stress of caregiving is left unchecked, it can take a toll on your health, relationships, and state of mind. The simple fact is that caregivers need care too.

Brent T. Mausbach, PhD examines the role of the caregiver for dementia patients in this Stein Institute for Research on Aging presentation. Learn about the psychological, emotional, and physical consequences of caregiving and what can be done to mitigate their impact.

Watch Caring for the Caregiver: Fight Caregiver Stress and Prevent Burnout.

Browse more programs from the Sam and Rose Stein Institute on Aging.

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Palliative Care: Live Better, Longer

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Palliative care focuses on improving your quality of life by managing pain and other stressful symptoms of a serious illness. Unlike hospice care, reserved for people who likely have 6 months or less to live and are unlikely to be cured, palliative care is for people of any age, and at any stage in illness, whether that illness is curable, chronic, or life threatening.

In this series, “Palliative Care: Living as Well as Possible for as Long as Possible,” you’ll explore key issues in the experience of serious illness, learn what Palliative Care is and how to improve care for the patient and family, and what it can offer to help people achieve the best possible quality of life for as long as possible regardless of their illness.

Latest programs:

Palliative Care: Who is it For, What Does it Do, Why Should I Want it and When?
Serious illness and end of life care has changed. People live longer and death often comes after years of serious, chronic illness. Dr. Steven Pantilat, UCSF Professor of Medicine, explains that the challenge is to help people achieve the best possible quality of life for as long as possible, consistent with their goals and preferences.

Giving Your Loved Ones the Gift of Knowing What You Want: Advance Care Planning
Dr. Rebecca Sudore, Associate Professor of Medicine at UCSF, explains that the goal of advanced care planning is to make sure that the medical care a person gets is the medical care that is in line with her or his life goals and values and to prepare people and their loved ones to make informed choices based on what is most important.

Are There Atheists in a Foxhole?: The Spiritual Dimension Of Illness
Rev. Denah Joseph, Chaplain and Associate Director UCSF Palliative Care Service, reflects on the domains of religion, spirituality, and culture in the care of the seriously ill.

Browse all programs in Palliative Care: Living as Well as Possible for as Long as Possible.

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Fast Facts about Testosterone

8232Dr. T. Mike Hsieh sat down with Dr. David Granet to discuss diagnosing, treating, and living with low testosterone. Here are a few key takeaways from their talk:

  • Chemically, testosterone is a steroid hormone.
  • Andropause is the term for when a man’s testosterone level begins to decrease.
  • Restoring a hormone balance along with lifestyle changes can promote healthy weight loss.
  • Testosterone is the same in everyone’s body but the hormone receptors we have are very different. Men with less sensitive receptors are more susceptible to testosterone-based health issues.
  • Testosterone is not a magic bullet to aging.

To learn more about low testosterone, Low Testosterone with T. Mike Hsieh on Health Matters.

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Science of Resilience: How to Thrive in Life

8232How do you thrive in life no matter where you are in life?

If you’re lucky to live long enough, you know that life has many pieces to it. It has the wonderful bits: falling in love, having a career, traveling, following your passion. And it often contains difficult times: illness, divorce, and loss. How you navigate through these different experiences determines how well you thrive in your life.

In this program from the Stein Institute for Research on Aging, Dr. Darlene Mininni shares how resilience, emotional intelligence and mindfulness can affect physical health. The motto that most inspires her comes from Job Kabat-Zinn: “You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” In other words, good and bad events can occur in life. You might not be able to change the circumstances, but you can learn how to “surf” through them.

Dr. Mininni offers practical advice to bring more well-being into your life. Watch Science of Resilience: How to Thrive in Life.

Browse more programs from the Stein Institute for Research on Aging Series.

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You’ve been invaded – by your Microbiome!

8232“If you like science fiction, I’m going to open with this,” begins David Granet. “You have been invaded. And the invaders are 10 times more than the number of cells in your body. They affect your health, they affect much about what your life does, and about who you are, and what you look like. What are these? It’s your microbiome.”

Microbiome researcher, Rob Knight, Phd joins host David Granet, MD for a fascinating discussion about our massive microbiome.

These tiny organisms have been with us since birth and we continue to acquire them and lose them based on our environment, our diet, and our age. Indeed, various parts of our bodies have different microbiobes which can include bacteria, fungi, and other single-celled organisms.

But don’t panic just yet! According to Knight, we don’t want to wage war on our microbiobes. Instead, he says, “You want to think of them more as a landscape you want to nurture rather than as a battlefield where you want to eliminate everything that is not you.”

So, how might our microbiome affect our health?

Here’s the story of two mice: one skinny and one fat. Each mouse has exactly the same genetics, eats the same foods, and exercises the same amount. Researchers insert the microbiome of one mouse into the other. The skinny mouse becomes fat. The fat mouse becomes skinny.

And it’s not just mice. Our human microbiome has also been shown to impact our health. Rob Knight works with the America Gut project which has collected the microbiome of thousands of people and continues to learn more about how it relates to our health and even our behavior.

“If we can start putting together that map of people who have different medical conditions and the kinds of micriobes that lead them to different places on that microbial map,” says Knight, “then we can tell you a lot more about what’s likely to happen to you, what’s happened already, and potentially what you should do about it.”

“It’s really incredible how they run us,” says Dr. Granet.

Learn more about our incredible microbiome and how it helps to define who we are.

Watch Our Micriobiome – Health Matters.

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