OT WebGems- Geriatric Issues

I am by nature, a total packrat in real life. I am even worse on the internet, as my bookmarks folder is now overflowing waterfall style! So here come the WebGems- with a focus on geriatric issues.

First off, some good news- TKRs do improve I/ADL function for elderly individuals! So it will be worthwhile in the end- but remember, it will HURT!!

This an ADVANCE piece on Elderspeak. It can be a hard habit to break, and usually requires me to write down all my patients' names until they're familiar to me, but I think people respond better when talked to appropriately. Different facilities have different policies... when I was on my Level II's we were on a first name basis with all the clients, to the point where one place had first names, last initial, on all the wheelchairs. At my current employment we're supposed to use Mr/Ms Last Name, but usually when I ask people what they would like to be called, they give their first names. My only confusion has been with having priests as patients... the ones that I have had (who knew each other, ironically) both asked to be called by their first names, but then I got dirty looks from people who thought I should be addressing them as Father X.

This Medline article implies that they're getting better testing for evaluating a person's driving ability. (Hope it's better than the Portoglare!) No mention of OT driving rehab or Carfit. This test is pretty extensive though, and the main problem is that they're describing it as a test for people with Alzheimer's Disease. It would be hard enough to get a person to agree to take this once, but they're certainly not going to want to keep taking it every year to satisfy that they're capable.

In other AD news, there are reports of a lot of caregiver abuse. This should add to the case for better respite programs and support systems for elderly aging in place and caregivers in general.

Romance is an issue from birth to death. This editorial reflects on falling in love after aging. And this piece is an interesting look at love in an ALF and the complications involving the family and staff.

And lastly, this editorial by an internist looks at how complicated it has become to die in a world of MPOAs, full codes, and feeding tubes.

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