With maturity comes a host of advantages and life experiences; however, it’s important to realize that just as with pediatrics, individuals of an advanced age require specialized medical attention to optimize long term health.
Dr. Ben Abraham and Abraham Medical’s other providers in Snellville, GA (outside of Atlanta) use their expert knowledge to formulate customized senior care plans that combine healthy living with founded medical treatment. Abraham Medical’s staff provides regular monitoring of age-related medical conditions and effective therapies for identifying and managing the following:
Geriatrics/Elderly Care at Abraham Medical:
- Cardiovascular Disease
- Cognitive Function
- Compromised Mobility
- Dementia & Memory Loss
- Dermatology Diagnosis and Screening
- Diabetes Mellitus
- Diagnostic Tests/Checkups
- Fall Risk Prevention
- Fractures from Weakened Bones
- Geriatric Assessment
- Kidney Disease
- Medical Conditions (Ears, Nose and Throat Problems)
- Pain Management
- Respiratory Illnesses
- Sexual Dysfunction
- Urinary Incontinence & Other
This circulatory ailment develops when the heart is no longer able to pump enough blood throughout the body to feed organs and muscles with the oxygen necessary for function. Congestive heart failure can develop slowly or have a sudden onset caused by heart disease. With proper diagnosis and management, certain blood pressure medications and physical activity can be recommended to facilitate better circulation.
Cognitive decline is not uncommon in senior citizens, but early detection and diagnosis can be key in addressing the problem effectively. For this reason, cognitive screening is typically recommended for anyone over the age of 75 (Dr. Abraham, this was the recommendation in a National Institute on Aging publication. Do you agree, or do you think this age should be lower?), as well as patients who have expressed concern (or whose family members or close companions have expressed concern) about cognitive function. At Abraham Family and Geriatric Medicine, our staff and Dr. Abraham also look for signs of cognitive decline.
If cognitive problems are suspected, the first step is typically a brief in-office screening. If this screening indicates a potential concern, patients may be referred to more in-depth and specific testing. The treatment for cognitive impairment varies based on the determined cause. In some cases, the symptoms may be caused by an underlying health condition or by certain medications. For these patients, treating the root health problem or changing prescriptions may treat the cognitive decline effectively. For patients whose symptoms are caused by Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia, their condition may not be reversible, but appropriate planning may be able to minimize or slow their symptoms and lower the risk of injuries and other related issues.
A major component of most senior care plans includes some form of mobility treatment. When the tendons that connect muscles to bones become lax and joints become swollen, limited anti-inflammatory medications may be used to control joint pain and ease limb articulation.
Dementia & Memory Loss
A term used to reference several diseases characterized by decreased mental capacity, dementia is most commonly diagnosed in seniors. Dr. Abraham and the Abraham Medical team use the information gathered during a geriatric assessment to help affected individuals and their families maintain their health and independence for as long as possible. The Abraham Medical team uses the most up to date treatments available that are safe for geriatric patients.
Depression affects a person’s mood and can cause persistent feelings of sadness, emptiness and loss of interest. Affecting daily activities, depression can evolve into emotional and physical manifestations including changes in appetite, increased anxiety, chronic fatigue, physical pains or increased thoughts of death or suicide. Common causes for depression range from hormones and traumatic events to biological influences and imbalances within the brain’s chemistry. Depression affects each individual differently and similarly symptoms are also unique to each person, therefore treatments are determined on a case-by-case basis. Generally, effective forms of depression treatments can include medication and psychotherapy (or a combination of both), to relieve symptoms of depression before they get worse.
Dermatology Diagnosis and Screening
The skin continues to change and rejuvenate itself throughout life; however, an increased risk of skin cancers and non-cancerous growths come with age and extended sun exposure. Abraham Medical’ skin treatments may be used to treat the physical symptoms of environmental skin damage. Dr. Abraham can also examine any questionable markings for potential danger and/or treatment including: wart and skin tag removal, and age spot treatment.
While diabetes requires careful management and medical attention in any patient, this is especially true for the estimated 25.9% of American senior citizens who are diabetic. A disease that prevents or hinders the body’s production of insulin (the hormone that controls the level of sugar in the blood), diabetes can take multiple forms. While type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed by early adulthood, type 2 diabetes can develop at any time as a result of multiple risk factors, such as lifestyle, weight/obesity issues, family history, ethnicity, and age. As a patient’s type 2 diabetes continues to advance with age and the body produces less and less of its own insulin, it becomes increasingly important for patients to work with a doctor who is knowledgeable, experienced, and ready to work with their individual needs to establish a plan for medications and healthy living.
Here at Abraham Family Medicine, we now employ a Chronic Glucose Monitoring (CGM) system called LibreView to help diabetes patients monitor their health. LibreView is a cloud-based diabetes management system that helps diabetes patients by allowing them to easily record, view, and share glucose data with their healthcare provider. LibreView works by placing a small disk on a patient’s arm. This tracks their blood sugar levels for 24 hours a day for 2 weeks. After the 2 weeks have passed, the patient returns and we will discuss what they can do to make more informed decisions about their health and diabetes management based on the patterns and trends we observed.
Every patient’s body reacts to aging in a slightly different way, and even those who have been healthy throughout life need to become more vigilant with age. As a result, senior citizens need increasingly frequent visits to a physician. At the offices of Dr. B. Abraham, P.C., consistent exams as well as standard medical tests, such as a blood pressure check, cholesterol test, and various cancer screenings, allow us to notice early warning signs about a patient’s health. When necessary, we can also perform further diagnostic tests to ensure that a patient has the highest quality of care and that all of their needs are being addressed.
Fall Risk Prevention
As patients age, their risk for a fall increases, and while some may seem minor, falls are the leading cause of both fatal and non-fatal injuries for those over the age of 65. In fact, each year, one in three senior citizens experiences a fall.
Regardless of whether they have fallen in the past, geriatric patients should take measures to lower their risk of injuries. The best prevention is often a combination of addressing your own body (by exercising regularly to build muscle and balance, and by keeping up with regular vision exams) and addressing your surroundings (by checking whether any of your medications can cause dizziness and by eliminating hazards at home like items you can trip over, slippery bathtubs and showers, and dimly lit areas). However, every patient has their own unique circumstances, and at Abraham Family and Geriatric Medicine, we can discuss your individual needs and provide guidance to help you lower your risk of falling.
Fractures from Weakened Bones
Once a broken bone has been properly reset by an orthopedist, Dr. Ben Abraham can provide integrative exercises to strengthen the muscles surrounding the fractured bone and suggest specific dietary or medicinal supplements to further strengthen the skeleton and prevent future fractures.
A geriatric assessment is similar, in some ways, to the process of a physical evaluation: a doctor asks about medical history, current medical conditions, ongoing medications, and lifestyle factors in order to gain an accurate understanding of the patient’s overall health. A geriatric assessment, however, is a highly specialized process during which a geriatrician or physician with geriatric experience observes and/or notes senior patients’ eating, exercise, and social habits to gauge any possible disruption caused by age-related illness like dementia or Alzheimer’s. Because age-related illness tends to be progressive, Dr. Abraham and the Abraham Medical team recommend geriatric patients undergo routine assessment follow-ups to ensure that their symptoms are being minimized and healthy independence is maintained for as long as possible. Additionally, geriatric assessment provides patients’ families a scaled result of their loved one’s current mental and physical capacity so that they may plan accordingly for future care arrangements.
Aging has an effect on many of our vital organs, and the kidneys are no exception. The kidneys are essential for filtering waste and extra water out of the blood, and when their filtering ability is limited, it can cause serious health problems. Aging alone can slow the filtering ability of the kidneys, but they can also be damaged over the years by diabetes, high blood pressure, or cardiovascular disease.
While early kidney disease often has no symptoms, we can help you monitor the health of your kidneys and address your risk factors as needed. Depending on your individual needs, treatment for kidney disease may involve changes to your diet as well as medications to address high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and other accompanying concerns. Advanced kidney disease can lead to kidney failure, which requires treatment with dialysis or a kidney transplant, so detecting problems with the kidneys early is vital and can help patients enjoy many more healthy years.
At the offices of Dr. B. Abraham, P.C., we’re dedicated to providing our patients with the best possible care, no matter what life throws their way. By treating acute illnesses (temporary conditions that arise quickly, such as the flu, bronchitis, or an injury) as well as chronic medical conditions (illnesses that are long-lasting and often arise slowly, such as diabetes and arthritis), we cater our medical care to each patient’s individual needs using a combination of thorough and accurate diagnosis, medications, and lifestyle planning. From orthopedic injuries to the common cold to more serious illnesses, we address each patient’s condition in an individualized way to ensure the best possible care.
- Ears, Nose and Throat Problems: Conditions of the head and neck, including those affecting the ears, nose, or throat, range from minor concerns that can be easily treatable all the way up to serious health conditions that have longer lasting repercussions. At Abraham Family & Geriatric Medicine, our vast experience allows us to diagnose these conditions and determine proper treatment. For patients with concerns regarding hearing issues, ear infections, balance, allergies, sinus infections, vocal disorders, swallowing problems, and other matters of the head and neck, we will conduct a detailed exam and use necessary diagnostic testing to determine the direct cause of the symptoms and to tailor a treatment plan that is specific to the patient’s needs.
Joint pain is a common condition among senior patients. Inflammation of joints, degradation of the cartridge meant to pad the joints, and long term exposure to certain medications can produce joint problems. Dr. Ben Abraham will thoroughly evaluate affected joints and prescribe exercises, topical treatments, and/or drug therapies to minimize joint pain and swelling.
Osteoporosis is the most common bone thinning disorder in which patients do not metabolize calcium and phosphate correctly. Instead of the bones absorbing the nutrients for strength, the calcium and other minerals are leached into the body. Because the bones do not receive enough of these strengthening agents the bone tissue gradually disintegrates and becomes more prone to bone fracture.
Similar to the “growing pains” associated with adolescence, the aging process can lead to a certain amount of disorder between body systems and subsequent discomfort. Dr. Ben Abraham and the providers at Abraham Medical will evaluate your pain to determine its source(s), and suggest a combination of physical or medical therapies to maximize your independence and wellbeing.
Genetic predisposition to asthma, heightened sensitivity to environmental particulates, or a history of smoking can aggravate the symptoms of respiratory illnesses. Ongoing medical conditions such as diabetes and obesity can often exacerbate breathing problems. Dr. Abraham and his team of providers will evaluate your current breathing capacity and ongoing medical conditions to suggest breathing treatment options.
Sexual dysfunction refers to any problem that hinders a person from experiencing sexual arousal or gratification, as well as desire disorders, arousal disorders, orgasm disorders, and pain disorders (painful intercourse). Sexual dysfunction can include a number of causes, physical (like diabetes, heart disease, drug or alcohol addiction, and neurological or hormonal disorders) and at times psychological (due to stress and anxiety, relationship problems or emotional disorders). Through compiling a complete history of symptoms and, if needed, conducting physical examinations or laboratory tests, we can identify and address underlying causes of sexual dysfunction.
Similar to the effects of weakened tendons on joints and mobility, weakened muscles of the bladder and excretory orifices can make urination involuntary. If incontinence is caused by frequent muscular spasms of the bladder, Dr. Abraham may be able to suggest medication for regulation. Urinary incontinence can also develop as an effect of other excretory system components dysfunction such as prostate enlargement.