We Care ... primary care / medicare doctors for patients 60 and older. At AgeWell Medical Associates, we want to be your first contact for all your healthcare needs, and are dedicated exclusively to primary care for adults 60 and older.
We partner with our patients for shared decision making regarding your care, provide quick and easy access to your healthcare team here at AgeWell, coordinate with your other healthcare providers to prevent duplicate, possibly unnecessary testing, and focus on preventive services as well as chronic condition management.
Operating as usual
Happy First Day of Fall! 🍁🍂🍁🍂🍁
New Covid Booster Update! 🦠💉
With fall and winter looming, along with an anticipated seasonal surge in Covid cases, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention greenlit a new tool for battling the pandemic: updated booster shots.
The Food and Drug Administration authorized the shots last week and they are now available at pharmacies and health centers.
The new shots target the Omicron subvariant BA.5, the dominant version of the virus. Here’s what you need to know.
Where can I get the new booster shot?
The new vaccine is available at pharmacies and community health centers. Many mass-vaccination clinics across the country have closed, so you may have to seek out a new vaccination site. You can search a directory of sites at vaccines.gov.
Who is eligible?
The F.D.A. authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech booster for anyone 12 or older who received an initial vaccination or booster shot at least two months ago. Adults 18 or older can get the Moderna vaccine if it has been at least two months since their last vaccination. The C.D.C. recommended the same eligibility guidelines as the F.D.A.
What is the difference between the Pfizer and Moderna boosters?
Beyond the difference in age criteria, there is no practical difference between shots, said Dr. Peter Chin-Hong, an infectious disease specialist at the University of California, San Francisco. “From your body’s immune system perspective, it doesn’t remember which brand it is,” he said.
Does this Omicron-specific booster entirely replace the other boosters?
The new booster shot is a bivalent vaccine, meaning that it targets two versions of the coronavirus: the original strain, and the Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5. The previous booster shot targeted only the original version of the virus.
The new shots are now the only available boosters for people ages 12 and older. The F.D.A. no longer authorizes the previous booster doses for people in the approved age groups. People who have not received their first doses of the vaccine will still receive the original vaccines that were rolled out in late 2020.
How long should I wait to get the new booster if I recently had a shot or got Covid?
The F.D.A. authorized the updated boosters for people who were at least two months out from their last shot (whether that was the original vaccine or a booster), but you might want to wait longer. An advisory panel to the C.D.C. voted to recommend the same interval between doses, although several members voiced concerns that two months was too short.
Doctors and immunologists said that in general, people should wait around four to six months after immunization or infection.
That’s because your body will probably not generate much of an immune response so soon after a previous encounter with the virus, Aubree Gordon, an epidemiologist at the University of Michigan, said. “Your immunity level is so high that you’ll just neutralize immediately the antigen that’s being produced — you kind of reach a ceiling,” she said. “You don’t have that much higher to go
Once you do get the booster, it typically takes around one to two weeks after you get the shot for your antibodies to “kick in,” Dr. Gordon said.
What about children under 12?
Kids under the age of 12 currently cannot receive the new booster. Children between the ages of 5 and 11 will get the previous booster; the C.D.C. recommends that they get that shot five months after their second dose. Kids under 5 are not eligible for booster shots.
The F.D.A. is working to make the new booster available to kids under 12, Dr. Asish Jha, the White House’s coronavirus response coordinator, said in a press briefing.
“When F.D.A. authorizes these vaccines and age groups, C.D.C. will expand its recommendations accordingly,” a spokesman for the C.D.C. wrote in an email.
Can you get the new booster if you’re pregnant?
Yes. Booster shots are safe for pregnant people, Dr. Chin-Hong said, and just as with the previous vaccines, scientists expect that the antibodies a pregnant person generates could transfer to the newborn.
Does the new booster offer better protection than past ones?
The previous booster shots provided robust protection against severe disease. There were, however, people who had breakthrough infections even shortly after receiving booster shots, including President Biden.
Doctors expect the newest iteration of boosters to offer more protection against breakthrough infections, but they won’t be bulletproof. “It’s not a game-changer,” Shane Crotty, a virologist at the La Jolla Institute for Immunology, said. “But it is going to be better.”
There is not yet real-world data on how these bivalent vaccines perform in humans. Infectious disease experts compared the process of creating the new boosters to that of the annual flu shot, which is updated each year and primarily tested on animals, not humans.
“I’m not worried at all,” Dr. Chin-Hong said. “They’re not using any new ingredients. It’s like you’re still making brownies — you’re still using chocolate, sugar, flour. Maybe now you’re using more chocolate.”
Will there be more boosters in the future?
It’s unclear whether this will be the last Covid booster offered, or whether there will be new boosters on a regular basis. The United States could offer the vaccine each year around the fall, similar to the flu vaccine, if the virus surges become predictable, Dr. Chin-Hong said.
But the pandemic’s trajectory has been anything but straightforward, and it’s hard to anticipate the state of the virus over the next few months, let alone the next few years. If the virus had not evolved, we probably would not need any new shots now, Dr. Crotty said, adding, “It’s really up to the virus.”
Source: The New York Times
🐓 😂 🐓 🤣 🐓 😂 🐓
Thankful Thursday 😊
WELLNESS WEDNESDAY ‼️
AgeWell patients - we want to make it easy for you get your FLU SHOT at
your P*P office‼️ 🩺🦠💉🦠🩺
We have 3 options for you to receive your flu shot at our office.
1. You may get one at your scheduled provider visit.
2. We will have a drive through flu shot clinic in our parking lot.
3. We will have an in-office flu shot clinic.
CALL 719-475-5065 to schedule the drive through or in-office clinic appointments.
(Available to current AgeWell patients only)
Drive Through Clinic:
Please enter the parking lot from the International Circle entrance ONLY and drive to the rear of our lot where the umbrella is. Do not park your vehicle or get out.
Please enter the front door and sign in on the sheet located in the conference room near the restroom. Be seated in the room - there is no need to check in at the reception desk.
1. Please wear clothing that leaves your arm exposed for the injection.
2. Please arrive no earlier than your appointment time.
Who knew?? Not me❣️
The day got away from me!
Buy local honey - helps with allergies 🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝
If you have a concern about your mental health, schedule an appointment with your P*P at AgeWell. A referral to in house Psychologist Dr Mike Kenny may be available to you if covered by your insurance.
Two of my favorites ‼️
Photos from AgeWell Medical Associates, PC's post
Who knew?? Not me!! 🐓🥚🐓🥚🐓
If you have a concern, call and schedule an appointment with your P*P at AgeWell 🩺📱🩺📞🩺☎️🩺
What Your Bladder Is Trying to Tell You About Your Health: These 3 changes may be clues to other problems.
How your bladder functions every day can tell you a lot about your overall health. How often you urinate during the day and during the night, the color of your urine and whether you can hold it all provide clues to health conditions that don’t involve your urinary system.
“Eighty percent of the causes of bladder problems are related to conditions outside of the bladder,” says urogynecologist Raymond Rackley, MD. These can include problems with the nervous or cardiovascular systems, he says.
So what should you look out for? “Any problem that is a departure from your usual habits” says Ob/Gyn Cecile Ferrando, MD, MPH.
Here are three major signs to watch for:
1. Increase in frequency
How often you have to urinate is a good indicator of your body’s overall state of hydration. It’s considered normal to have to urinate about six to eight times in a 24-hour period.
If you’re going more often than that, it could simply mean that you may be drinking too much fluid or consuming too much caffeine, which is a diuretic and flushes liquids out of the body.
But frequent urination also can be a sign of several more serious conditions, including a bladder infection, prostate problems, a heart condition, leg swelling, or interstitial cystitis (also called painful bladder syndrome), which is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the bladder.
Frequent urination also can be a symptom of an overactive bladder, a common, easily treated condition that could be caused by several problems, including nerve damage, medications, infections, being overweight and estrogen deficiency.
If you’re a woman, the need to urinate frequently also may be a sign of poorly supported pelvic organs, such as the bladder. This is when the bladder drops into the vaginal opening because of weak pelvic floor muscles, typically following childbirth.
Some people find they need to urinate more frequently at night as they get older. “That’s fairly typical”Dr. Rackley says.
“People will have an increase in nighttime voiding as they age,” Dr. Rackley says. “But most people after the age of 60 rarely get up more than twice a night, so more than that can be related to an overall indication of your health.”
2. A pink, red or brown hue
If your urine appears pink or reddish ― and you haven’t eaten a lot of beets, blackberries or rhubarb recently ― the color could indicate blood in your urine. This is a serious symptom, one you should see your doctor about as soon as possible.
“Blood in your urine is never, ever normal, and requires immediate medical attention,” Dr. Ferrando says. Bloody urine could be indicative of cancer.
Darker colors such as amber or brown usually indicate dehydration. Increase the amount of fluids that you drink and lay off the caffeine. If your urine remains dark, talk to your doctor.
Incontinence refers to the involuntary loss of urine. There are two main types of urinary incontinence: stress incontinence and urge incontinence.
When a woman leaks urine when coughing, laughing, sneezing or exercising strenuously, it is called stress incontinence and is typically related to a weakness in the urethra. Stress incontinence also is related to being overweight, which puts additional pressure on a woman’s pelvic floor muscles, which support the urinary system. Stress incontinence can be treated with weight loss, pelvic muscle exercises or a small surgery.
Women who feel an overwhelming urgency to urinate and leak urine before reaching the toilet may have urge incontinence. This is a condition related to overactive bladder in which the bladder muscle begins to squeeze prematurely.
It can be treated with bladder retraining, medications, botulinum toxin injections that paralyze part of the bladder muscle, or a pacemaker-like device implanted under the skin that affects the nerves that control the bladder.
Source: Cleveland Clinic
Laughter is Good Medicine 😂🤣😂
So is the excellent care you will get at AgeWell 🩺
REMEMBER - you can get VACCINES at AgeWell! 🦠 💉🩹🦠
WASHINGTON — The Biden administration plans to offer the next generation of coronavirus booster shots to Americans 12 and older soon after Labor Day, a campaign that federal officials hope will reduce deaths from Covid-19 and protect against an expected winter surge.
Dr. Peter Marks, the top vaccine regulator for the Food and Drug Administration, said in an interview on Tuesday that while he could not discuss timing, his team was close to authorizing updated doses that would target the versions of the virus now circulating.
Even though those formulations have not been tested in humans, he said, the agency has “extremely good” data showing that the shots are safe and will be effective. “How confident am I?” he said. “I’m extremely confident.”
This week, both Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech finalized their submissions to the F.D.A. asking for emergency authorization of booster shots aimed at BA.5 and another subvariant of Omicron that together account for most coronavirus cases in the United States.
Federal health officials say they are eager to offer the updated boosters as quickly as possible, pointing to a death toll that now averages about 450 Americans per day and could rise in the coming months as people spend more time indoors.
“We have really got to do better to protect the American public,” Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, President Biden’s chief medical adviser, said in an interview on Tuesday. “We are in the middle of a BA.5 outbreak here, and we are nowhere near where we want to be.”
The Biden administration has struggled to convince Americans of the need for successive vaccinations. Only about two-thirds of the population has been inoculated with the primary series of two shots, and far fewer have received booster doses.
Some outside scientists have said the government is moving too fast to clear redesigned shots, arguing that the existing vaccines provide strong protection against severe disease.
“Deaths are concentrated in unvaccinated people and people with serious health conditions,” said John P. Moore, a virologist at Weill Cornell Medicine. He said the extra protection that the new shots would provide against infection could be “weak to nonexistent.”
Jeremy Kamil, a virologist at Louisiana State University Health Shreveport, said that although he supported new boosters, many people had immunity because of recent infections. “Even if we get this out in the next 10 days, how many people are left who haven’t gotten Omicron?” he said.
Other scientists said that the government’s plan made sense given how the virus had changed and the evidence that immunity wanes over time. Dr. Marks said that if regulators waited for additional data or recommendations from outside experts, the virus might evolve further and “we may have lost a bunch of individuals who could otherwise be sitting around at the dinner table together.”
In a sign of impending action from the F.D.A., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has scheduled a two-day meeting of its advisory panel of experts on the matter for Sept. 1 and 2. The C.D.C. director, Rochelle P. Walensky, would then make a final decision on whether to roll out the new doses. Shipments to states could begin as early as next week, according to officials familiar with the plan.
The government plans to offer the new Pfizer booster to everyone 12 and older while limiting the new Moderna shot to adults. People who have already received the initial two-shot series of either vaccine would be eligible. So would those who have received the initial shots plus one or two booster shots. The new booster campaign could be broadened to younger children later.
Dr. Marks suggested that the biggest obstacle to the effort was the level of complacency that had set in, even as the pandemic continued to exact what he called an “unacceptable” death toll.
He said the F.D.A. might recommend that people who had recently received a Covid vaccine dose wait “a few months” before getting the new shot, even if they were otherwise eligible. He said the C.D.C. might weigh in on whether people who were recently infected with the virus should also wait.
As of mid-August, the federal government had bought more than 170 million doses of the updated version of the vaccines. This month, the C.D.C. laid out detailed plans to offer the shots, warning that the supply would be “sufficient but finite” and saying that doses should be “directed to providers with expected demand among eligible patients.”
The new shots combine the original vaccine with components aimed at the BA.4 and BA.5, Omicron’s recent subvariants. Officials argue that the new formulations will deliver a stronger boost to the immune system than the existing vaccines provide.
Unlike earlier shots, the redesigned formulations have not been tested widely on humans; instead, the companies have submitted data from mice trials. Some vaccine experts have complained that animal data is too preliminary and say regulators should wait for results of human clinical trials.
But Dr. Fauci said using animal data was “not anything different than we always do” in updating the flu vaccine each year. Dr. Marks said other evidence included the extensive track record with the existing vaccines and a series of earlier human trials with variant-specific formulations.
“I take great issue with those who say, ‘Oh, you’re just approving this with mouse data,’” he said. “We’re authorizing this with the totality of the evidence that we have.”
Moderna and Pfizer have both submitted clinical data from human studies of redesigned shots targeting the original version of the Omicron variant. Britain last week authorized that version of Moderna’s vaccine, but U.S. regulators asked for formulations aimed at Omicron’s newer subvariants.
Researchers are still working to answer key questions about the protection that the new vaccines deliver, including the levels of antibodies the shots generate in humans and how those antibodies protect people. Moderna began human trials of its new vaccine this month, and Pfizer plans to do the same later in the month. Initial data from those trials is expected later this year.
Federal regulators are reviewing applications from Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech for emergency authorization of new booster shots that target Omicron subvariants now circulating.
Dr. Moore, the virologist at Weill Cornell Medicine, said the administration’s plans could backfire if the fall or winter brings a wave of disease despite the new boosters, potentially reducing overall confidence in Covid-19 vaccines.
“My issue all along has been: Is there enough data to really justify the effort?” Dr. Moore said. “The potential downside is, if the public thinks that this Omicron-containing booster is some kind of magic bullet that will give them superstrong protection from infection, is there a risk that they will change their behavior to increase their exposure?”
The F.D.A. will decide whether to authorize the retooled doses without seeking a recommendation from its outside advisory panel of experts, a step it usually takes before making new vaccines available. Critics have complained that regulators have bypassed the panel at crucial steps.
Dr. Marks defended the decision, saying a late June meeting of the advisory panel on the need to revise the vaccines had given regulators “everything we needed.” The committee voted overwhelming then in favor of updating the vaccines to work better against Omicron or its subvariants, but it did not consider specific formulations.
Source: The New York Times
Alcohol use in the Senior Population
According to a 2017 analysis, alcohol use has steadily increased in the population age 60 and above over the past 2 decades, particularly among women. Data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health indicate that approximately 20 percent of adults aged 60-64 and around 11 percent over age 65 report current binge drinking. Older adults can experience a variety of problems from drinking alcohol, especially those who:
• Take certain medications
• Have health problems
• Drink heavily
There are special considerations facing older adults who drink, including:
Increased Sensitivity to Alcohol
Aging can lower the body’s tolerance for alcohol. Older adults generally experience the effects of alcohol more quickly than when they were younger. This puts older adults at higher risks for falls, car crashes, and other unintentional injuries that may result from drinking.
Increased Health Problems
Certain health problems are common in older adults. Heavy drinking can make these problems worse, including:
High blood pressure
Congestive heart failure
Bad Interactions with Medications
Many prescription and over-the-counter medications, as well as herbal remedies can be dangerous or even deadly when mixed with alcohol. Medications that can interact badly with alcohol include:
Cold and allergy medicine
Anxiety or depression medicine
Guidelines for Alcohol Consumption
According to the "Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025,” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture, adults of legal drinking age can choose not to drink or to drink in moderation by limiting intake to 2 drinks or less in a day for men and 1 drink or less in a day for women, when alcohol is consumed. Drinking less is better for health than drinking more. There are some adults who should not drink alcohol, such as women who are pregnant.
If you have a health problem or take certain medications, you may need to drink less or not at all because of the reasons described above.
Source: National Institute of Health
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Family Practice Clinic in Colorado Springs. Now accepting new patients. Walk-ins are currently welcomed. Make an appointment for a Telemedicine visit Open Monday-Thursday 8am-4:30pm. Please call 719-645-8137 if you would like to schedule an appointment
Core Chiropractic is a clinic which offers chiropractic services and preventative healthcare measures to ensure the optimum health of our patients.
Well-Respected Dr. Kiran Pandit, MD has been Meritoriously Named a 2019 ‘Patient Preferred Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Specialist’ for the State of Colorado!
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Contact Boykin Chiropractic Office today at 719-578-8820 for all of your chiropractic care needs.
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Dr. Spencer Storey is a chiropractor in Colorado Springs, Colorado. If you are experiencing pain, di