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Thread: Getting old: Defy or accept?

  1. #71
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    I agree with some of what she said but not all. I have had 1 colonoscopy at 55 and undecided if I will have another before 70. After 70 your lining thins and it is easier to perforate your colon which usually results in death from sepsis. My sibs figure it is worth the risk since they have polyps every time they get one (every 5 years). I didn't have any. mammograms however are a no brainer for me. Most people that get breast cancer have no history.

  2. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Teacher Terry View Post
    I agree with some of what she said but not all. I have had 1 colonoscopy at 55 and undecided if I will have another before 70. After 70 your lining thins and it is easier to perforate your colon which usually results in death from sepsis. My sibs figure it is worth the risk since they have polyps every time they get one (every 5 years). I didn't have any. mammograms however are a no brainer for me. Most people that get breast cancer have no history.
    I too had mixed feelings about this. My mom was definitely in the BE camp and stopped going to the doctor somewhere in her late 70's early 80's. she is 91. My dad goes because he has cancer, emphysema, diabetes, and COPD. He'll be 90 in May.

    The problem is you don't always die the way you want, at home, in your sleep, peacefully etc. They tried to die at home just by hoping they would, and so stopped getting medical care, then fell, then the EMT's came, then they are in the system, hospital-wise, and how they are all in. Mom still resists going to the doctor so they label her defiant and incompetent. I feel at 91, they should be asking her advice--how did you get to this age without seeing a doctor in 10 years, what have you done to stay this healthy?

    They so wanted to die at home, out of the clutches of the medical system. Now they cannot, and it's pretty grim for them, although they are investigating hospice, as they both qualify.

    So its all well and good to say I'm going to stay away from doctors, but then when you fall and can't get up, and the EMTS come and take you to the hospital, all bets are off.

  3. #73
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    So true that once you are elderly and beyond being in control of health situations, the system will suck you in. Watching it play out with my MIL now. The poor woman seems to have an MRI every six months and for what?? Ditto blood tests, X-Rays and other diagnostic tests.

  4. #74
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    It sounds like Barbara Bush will be able to go without further tests and interventions.

  5. #75
    Senior Member Rogar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yppej View Post
    It sounds like Barbara Bush will be able to go without further tests and interventions.
    It might be a little easier choice at 92 than 70, depending on the circumstances.

  6. #76
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    A friend of mine had a colonoscopy at 72 and ended up in the ER 4x's due to a bleed caused by the test.

  7. #77
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    I was taking a break from the snow by sampling some warm and humid music recorded in Bazil.

    I found a few by Maria Bethania (born 1946). Her style is energetic. I think her clothes, hair and jewelry look great on her. She was about 70 years old when she did this performance. She has been entertaining since the age of 17. People still pay to see her!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uhNtKiYyBVg

  8. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rogar View Post
    I might have to think about her perspective on preventive testing, but it does seem like some of the surgeries and medications that were popular just a few years ago are now considered causing more harm than good. I sometimes think that medical science is no where near perfected. And hospital stays and surgery spin the roulette wheel for errors and infections. However, I currently enjoy being around and there are preventive care things that seems to make sense to me.
    So true Rogar. I work on the other side of the scalpel. Every move or "mismove" we make affects the patient.

    As for western medicine and aging.....I'm on my last leg with this knee injury from 3y ago. I'm having a knee replacement June 6. I cannot deny any longer that this will only get worse-Tuesday I could not bear weight after 1 mis-step. It took several hours to calm enough to gimp around. Enough is enough.

    Unlike many patients, i will follow orders. I continue to be amazed at patient noncompliance-there are sound rationale for the specific instructions we give and ignoring them can result in a less-than-desired outcome. And then they are mad at us?

    Pharmaceuticals are a whole other bag of worms and I steer clear as much as is rational. No cholesterol lowering drugs for me-the side effects are wicked IMO i eat whole foods and little processed crap. OTOH, hubby is on high BP meds. 120 diastolic scared the crap out of him finally while the 90s didn't. A stroke was imminent and the evidence exists. He's feeling much better. I have high hopes that through weight reduction and better food choices, it will come down significantly and we can get him off of those in a year or 2.

    It's all a crap shoot and being well-informed is the only way to make a right choice for oneself.

  9. #79
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    Catherine, I just read the book Natural Causes which was fascinating. She aid the radiation from mammograms are known to cause cancer. Now I have to research how much you would need because it might be so small that it doesn't matter. A friend of mine gets a sonogram every year instead because of this.

  10. #80
    Senior Member Gardenarian's Avatar
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    Interesting points!
    I'm scheduled to get a mammogram this week. My doctor was quite insistent on it and I figured it was harmless (though we are all paying $$ somehow for all of these tests.) I'll do some research before I go. Thanks for posting.

    One thing I've discovered about myself is that most of feeling good is about having strong muscles.
    A lot of the aches and pains of aging attributed to skeletal issues (back, hip, shoulder problems) have more to do with loss of muscle tone than degeneration or arthritis. Tons of studies show that the same number of pain-free people have "bad"disks, impingement syndromes, and arthritis, as people who have lots of pain. But when a person has pain and something shows up on an x-ray or MRI, the doctors feel justified in ordering surgery.

    It's part of our culture that having a diagnosis validates your pain.
    And it's in some way easier, simpler, to have an operation than to embark on a life-long exercise regimen to maintain strength and mobility - especially when all the authorities seem to say it's for the best.

    I recently rejoined my gym, realizing I wasn't putting the same energy into my home workouts. And I'm getting more healing help from the (included) personal trainer at the gym than I did from any doctors. Yoga is not enough for me; I need weights.

    I wish I was one of those very physical people who keep strong by running and chopping wood and re-roofing their own houses, but I'm just not. Maybe I will be someday!

    I'm not knocking anyone who has surgery; when I smashed the bones in my foot I was awfully glad to have a surgeon screw the bones back together. It would have been even better had he recommended exercises to keep my body strong while staying off my foot for almost a year.

    I do get flu vaccines - haven't had the shingles or pneumonia one yet. I wonder what Ehrenreich thinks of those.

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