Perspectives: Palliative Care Isn’t Profitable; Is Estrogen Deficiency A Real Issue?
Opinion writers focus on these topics and more.
Palliative Care Works, So Why Is It Rarely Used? Follow The Money
Adecade ago, a team of researchers showed clearly that a new treatment for advanced lung cancer significantly improved patients’ quality of life, reduced symptoms of depression, lowered the likelihood of being admitted to the hospital for a complication of their disease, and improved survival. Subsequent research has found similar beneficial effects in other cancers and diseases. Flash forward to today: Two-thirds of patients living with a serious illness who could benefit from this therapy don’t get it, and the majority of cancer physicians do not prescribe it despite endorsements from the American Cancer Society and the American Society of Clinical Oncology. (R. Sean Morrison and Mireille Jacobson, 3/23)
Is Estrogen Deficiency Really A Thing?
“Estrogen deficiency” is a common phrase. It is often used to describe people who are one year or more beyond their last period. However, estrogen deficiency has been diagnosed in 13- or 14-years-olds who have just experienced their first period. Or in a thin or stressed university student whose menstruation suddenly stopped. It could also be found in a teenager who is eventually diagnosed as having polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) after persistent adolescent acne, unwanted facial hair and irregular periods. Finally, someone with estrogen deficiency might be having irregular or skipped periods as a perimenopausal 35-plus-year-old. Odd, isn’t it, that so many people lack estrogen? (Jerilyn C. Prior, 3/24)
How Massachusetts Can Become A Living Laboratory For Aging
In a country growing rapidly older, New England has the potential to become a kind of living laboratory for all things related to aging. Several of the nation’s oldest states and communities are here, and it is in our regional DNA to innovate. We are also home to many professionals who can establish New England as a global Longevity Hub — academics, biomedical researchers, financial service providers, technology designers, venture capitalists, housing developers, and experienced government and private sector leaders with a vision of what is possible. Many have not focused their attention on aging yet but, given the potential in this area, they should. (3/22)
San Francisco Chronicle:
Battling The 'Disease Of Isolation' In A Pandemic
It’s always around this time of day in the pandemic that I feel my anxiety rising. It’s not worry, it’s not “bad thoughts” it’s a physical, visceral reaction to the never ending loop that has become life — all of the demands, none of the traditional coping strategies, and an intense feeling of isolation. It’s in this anxiety that I have gone back to a behavior that I long ago recovered from. It was buried somewhere deep, locked away and waiting for a trying situation to return and comfort me, and then slowly chip away at my happiness and relationships. I feel like an absolute failure being back in this place. Addiction is often referred to as a “disease of isolation,” and that’s precisely how I’ve been feeling: completely alone. (Vanessa Dueck, 3/22)