All news from Geriatrics

Cutoff Point Defines Non-beneficial Treatment For Older Patients

Researchers reviewed the medical records of 733 admitted patients who received calls for medical emergency teams during hospitalization. The median age was 68 years but a third of the patients were older than 80 years.

Aggressive Life-saving Treatments

UNSW medical researchers are calling for restraint on the use of aggressive life-saving treatments for frail elderly patients at the end of their lives, saying the focus should instead be placed on making patients' last days comfortable and dignified. The study was published in the Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety.


Hearing Sound Varies In Different Age Groups

By exploring differences in the way younger and older adults respond to sounds, Western neuroscientists have found that our brains become more sensitive to sounds as we age, likely leading to hearing challenges over a lifetime.

BrainsCAN Postdoctoral Scholar Björn Herrmann and Ingrid Johnsrude, Western Research Chair in Cognitive Neuroscience, examined the auditory cortex responses of participants in their 20s and 60s. What they found was differences in responses to soft and loud sounds. The study was published in the Journal of Neuroscience.

Treating Children With Severe Atopic Dermatitis

Researchers showed that treating children with severe atopic dermatitis remains a challenge because there are so few effective and approved therapies. But there is hope that pipeline therapies, including Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors and a monoclonal antibody against the IL-31 receptor for the treatment of itch, may address some needs among severely impacted children.

The study was published in the Current Allergy and Asthma Reports.  The researchers reviewed what is known about severe atopic dermatitis in children and identified gaps in treatment and knowledge. 

Magnetic Particles in Human Post Mortem Brains Mapped

Many living organisms, such as migratory birds, are thought to possess a magnetotactic sense, which enables them to respond to the Earth's magnetic field. Whether or not humans are capable of sensing magnetism is the subject of debate. However, several studies have already shown that one of the preconditions required for such a magnetic sensory system is indeed met: magnetic particles exist in the human brain.

The research team has systematically mapped the distribution of magnetic particles in human postmortem brains. Their findings were published in the journal Scientific Reports. 

Fight Against Pesticides: Marine Mammals lack Functional Gene

As marine mammals evolved to make water their primary habitat, they lost the ability to make a protein that defends humans and other land-dwelling mammals from the neurotoxic effects of a popular human-made pesticide. The implications of this discovery led researchers to call for monitoring our waterways to learn more about the impact of pesticides and agricultural run-off on marine mammals, such as dolphins, manatees, seals and whales.

Drug-Resistant Strains: Lower-risk Malaria Regions are Breeding Grounds

New drug-resistant strains of the parasite that causes malaria tend to evolve in regions with lower malaria risk; in areas with high transmission rates, they get outcompeted by the more common, drug-sensitive strains inside the human host. In high-transmission settings, it takes a long time for drug-resistant strains to take hold, but once they do, they can spread rapidly, according to a new study.

Economic and Political Aspects in Better Healthcare

Richer, perhaps, but certainly not very healthy. In 2016, life expectancy in India was 68.6 years, compared with 76.2 in China, 75.28 in Sri Lanka, 72.49 in Bangladesh, and 70.25 in Nepal. In 2015, the Bank says, 39.6% of Indians were at risk of catastrophic expenditure for surgery.  This is because 65% of the population had no insurance coverage and was spending out-of-pocket (OOP) for medical care.