Anticholinergic cognitive burden scale

This scale was developed Dr. Malaz Boustani, a researcher at the Regenstrief Institute and the Indiana University Center for Aging Research, and her colleagues. A drug was given a score of 1 if it had possible anticholinergic effects based on lab tests but no evidence of clinically relevant cognitive effects A drug was given a score of 2 or 3 if it had established and clinically relevant anticholinergic effects. Drugs not listed have a score of 0. The idea is to add up the scores of the drugs a person is taking. If the sum of the scores is 3 or more, then medications with lower anticholinergic cognitive burden scores might be considered to lower the overall anticholinergic cognitive burden. (Locked) More »

Napping may not be such a no-no

  A nap in the afternoon can help a person regain mental focus and retain information better, and may help people who work night shifts remain alert.   More »

The male face of osteoporosis

As death rates from heart disease and other conditions decline, more men are living long enough to lose bone mass, making osteoporosis more of a male problem than it had been considered in the past. (Locked) More »

A sport for all seasons

Swimming is an excellent form of exercise for almost anyone. It tones larger muscles, eases arthritis pain, and lowers blood pressure, while the cushion of the water greatly reduces the risk of injury. (Locked) More »

Side effects: Minor can add up to major

Many medications have anticholinergic side effects, meaning they block the action of a key nervous system chemical. If a person takes a number of these medications for a period of time, the effects can build up and cause problems with thinking and memory. (Locked) More »

By the way, doctor: Why did my doctor prescribe steroids?

I have been diagnosed with temporal arteritis and am being treated with prednisone, which the doctor says is a steroid. I know athletes use steroids to bulk up, and I can't see how that would have anything to do with temporal arteritis. Can you explain? (Locked) More »

By the way, doctor: Can the brain grow new neurons?

A recent Health Letter urged us seniors to stay mentally active because that causes the growth of new neurons (brain cells). When my husband had a stroke 40 years ago, the doctors told me the brain cannot make new cells in later life. What's the truth? (Locked) More »