DVT Risk – Self Assessment

Here is a quick way to do a self assessment to see if you are at risk of suffering from Deep Vein Thrombosis.  For each of the criteria below, give yourself points against the option that is right for you. At the end add up your points.  The points table at the bottom shows if you are at risk and at what level.

Age

Years Score
10 – 30 0
31 – 40 1
41 – 50 2
51 – 50 3
61+ 4

Body Mass Index

Build BMI Score
Underweight 16 – 18 0
Average/Desirable 19 – 25 1
Overweight 25 – 30 2
Obese 31 – 40 3
Morbid Obesity 41+ 4

Mobility

Ambulant 0
Walk with aids (Walker) 1
Needs help 2
Chair bound 3
Completely bed ridden 4

Special risk category
For women using oral contraceptives:

20 – 35 years 1
35+ 2
Pregnant 3

Recent surgery

Thoracic 3
Abdominal 3
Neurosurgical 3
Urological 3
Orthopedic (Below waist) 4

High Risk Diseases

Ulcerative Colitis 1
Anemia 2
Polycythaemia 2
Chronic heart disease 3
Myocardial Infarction 4
Malignancy 5
Varicose Veins 6
Previous DVT 7

Total

< 6 No risk
6 – 10 Low risk
11 – 14 Moderate risk
15+ High risk
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Foot care for diabetics

Over 60% of diabetics suffer from some form of nerve damage.  This is called diabetic neuropathy. People with diabetes can, over time, develop nerve damage throughout the body. Some people with nerve damage have no symptoms. Others may have symptoms such as pain, tingling, or numbness-loss of feeling-in the hands, arms, feet, and legs. Nerve problems can occur in every organ system, including the digestive tract, heart, and sex organs.

People with diabetes can develop nerve problems at any time, but risk rises with age and longer duration of diabetes. The highest rates of neuropathy are among people who have had diabetes for at least 25 years. Diabetic neuropathies also appear to be more common in people who have problems controlling their blood glucose, also called blood sugar, as well as those with high levels of blood fat and blood pressure and those who are overweight.

The most common type of diabetic neuropathy is peripheral neuropathy, which essentially affects hands, arms, legs, feet and toes.  In many cases people lose sensation in these area and hence injuries to these parts of the body, especially feet and toes go unnoticed, leading to infections which could eventually result in amputation, septicemia and even death.

The importance of foot care for diabetics cannot be stressed enough.  Here are some precautions to take:

1. Inspect your foot daily (Visual surveillance of extremities(VSE))
2. Wash foot in lukewarm water
3. Use correct footwear
4. Do not walk bare foot
5. Do not walk with ulcer in the foot
6. Get periodic foot exams
7. Do not sit with legs crossed
8. Do not trim corns and calluses
9. Do not apply heating and cooling pads on legs
10. Cut nails carefully

In addition, there is whole range of special footwear available today that can keep your foot safe and free of infection.  We have already covered some of the silver yarn based socks.  You can read more about them here.

So what do you look for in footwear (shoes or sandals), if you are a diabetic?  The diagram below gives you a quick overview of some the important features necessary in prophylactic footwear:

Click here to buy prophylactic footwear specially designed for diabetics and people with arthritis.

Anti-bacterial properties of silver yarn

Earlier today I added 3 more products into our catalog.  These are socks made of cotton with a mix of silver yarn (actual 99.9% pure silver, according to the product literature) meant specifically for diabetics who are in general susceptible to infections.

As I read (and wrote) about the special anti-bacterial properties of the silver in these socks, my skeptical nature raised a flag – “Is silver yarn really anti-bacterial in nature? Is this true?”  I had never heard of this before (never having looked for such information before, that is not surprising! :)), and I wanted to make sure that I was not propagating some “woo woo” pseudo-science just to sell a product.  So I did what most lay people do – I google’d it!  And here is what I found:

Silver yarn (usually wool or cotton yarn coated with silver) is actual highly anti-bacterial in nature.  Not only that, it has long-term effectiveness and remains so even after multiple washes of the fabric.  The Journal of Applied Polymer Science has a paper titled “Silver-coated wool yarns with durable antibacterial properties” that effectively states the following:

The use of fabrics with antibacterial properties for commodity applications can provide numerous advantages such as a reduction in the release of odors due to bacterial proliferation in sweat and a reduction in the development of skin hypersensitivity reactions due to microorganisms trapped into the fabrics. Silver is one of the most effective antibacterial agents used for the high degree of biocompatibility and for its long-term antibacterial effectiveness against many different bacterial strains. In this study, an innovative technique for the deposition of nanosilver antibacterial coating on woolen fiber was analyzed. In particular, fabrics woven with different percentages of silver-treated fibers were compared to determine the best ratio preserving the antibacterial activity and optimizing the cost-effectiveness of the final product. Scanning electron microscopy revealed a uniform distribution of silver nanoclusters on the fibers. The impressive silver coating stability and durability were demonstrated after several washing cycles through thermogravimetric analysis. The antimicrobial activity of the silver-treated substrates was evaluated by antibacterial tests on Escherichia coli. A very strong antibacterial activity was found even in presence of the lower silver content; therefore, a blend of coated and uncoated fibers is proposed for practical applications. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2012

So if you are a diabetic and want to protect your feet from infection go ahead and buy these socks for constant wear with the firm knowledge that the silver yarn in them truly has significant anti-bacterial properties.  You can buy them here.

As a company with the welfare of the senior citizen being central to our raison d’etre, we are very keen on ensuring that genuine, verifiable information is available on our site at all times.  If you find any matter that seems less than genuine, please write to us at info@oldisgoldstore.com and we will ensure that we will either provide material to support the matter or modify/remove the incorrect/unverifiable matter.  Thanks in advance for all your support.

Prostate Cancer – Early detection and cure

Incidences of prostate cancer have been increasing in India over the last couple of decades.  According the research 7 out of every 100,000 men get diagnosed with prostate cancer every year.  However, early detection can lead to close to 100% recovery.  So here is a quick look at the prostate and how one can detect cancer early and make a full recovery.

What is the prostate ?
The prostate is a compound tubuloalveolar exocrine gland of the male reproductive system. It is about the size of a walnut and is responsible for the production of the fluid that sperms travel in. It is located in front of the rectum and just below the bladder and wraps around the urethra.

Who is at risk of getting prostate cancer?
Prostate cancer is still relatively rare in India ( 7 out of every 100,000 get it) compared to developed countries such as the US ( 85 out of every 100,000). However, incidences of prostate cancer, both in India and among Indian men abroad have been steadily increasing and it is important to be aware of it so as to detect it early.  Incidences of prostate cancer are high among

1. Older men  – Typically men over the age of 60 are at risk.
2. Smokers
3. Men with family history of prostate cancer
4. Men who are obese, undertake very little physical activity and have a high intake of fatty foods.

Symptoms
Early stages, prostate cancer can be asymptomatic.  So it is good to have periodic prostate examinations done once you cross the age of 60.  However, look out for the following signs anyway:

1. Aching pains in genitals, lower abdomen and lower back.
2. Problems with sexual function
3. Painful, frequent, urgent urination
4. Slow urine stream and urination
5. Blood in urine
6. Loss of energy
7. Persistent swelling of legs
8. Hard growth on prostate
9. Enlarged lymph nodes.
10. Pain in the back, spine, hip or ribs.

The prostate check is a relatively easy and painless process.  The doctor will do a rectal examination by inserting a lubricated finger through the rectum and feel for enlargements, lumps and tenderness of the prostate.  The entire process will take less than a couple of minutes.

Post detection
If prostate cancer is detected, there are several procedures from radical prostatectomy (complete removal) to non-invasive procedures that can result in complete remission.  Your doctor would be the best person to suggest the way forward.

Bottom line
If you are a male over 60, every year as part of your regular medical checks, get your prostate examination done too.  Early detection can help you lead a long, active and healthy life.

What is Osteoporosis?

Today, October 20th is World Osteoporosis Day.

Get your Bone Mineral Density test done today.  It is a 2 minute non-invasive, simple procedure that can tell you if you are Osteoporosis free, Osteopenic (at high risk), or Osteoporofic (having Osteoporosis).

About Osteoporosis

Good Food habits to keep Osteoporosis away

Osteoporosis is a common bone disease that affects both men and women, usually as they grow older. In osteoporosis, the bone mineral density (BMD) is reduced, bone microarchitecture deteriorates, and the amount and variety of proteins in bone are altered.  This leads to an increased risk of fractures. Fortunately, you can take steps to reduce your risk of developing osteoporosis and avoid the often debilitating bone fractures that can result from the disease.

Some Facts

  1. Around the world, at least one in three women and one in five men over the age of 50 will suffer a fracture caused by weak bones.
  2. Thirty-three per cent of older adults who suffer a hip fracture become physically impaired and lose their ability to live independently one year after the fracture.
  3. At least one in five will die within the year following fracture.
  4. Vertebral (spine) fractures can cause extreme pain, long or short term disability, dowager’s hump, and significant loss in quality of life.
  5. Approximately half of all people who have had one osteoporotic fracture will have another.
  6. Eighty per cent of fragility fracture patients are neither assessed nor treated for osteoporosis or falls risk to reduce future fracture incidence.
  7. Treating fracture patients for osteoporosis can reduce the overall incidence of hip fracture by 20-25%.

Here are a few food habits that you can follow to avoid/delay Osteoporosis.

Say YES to:

  1. Fruits
  2. Low fat milk and dairy products
  3. Green leafy vegetables
  4. Pulses and grains
  5. Oily fish
  6. Sun light
  7. Physical exercise

Say NO to:

  1. Alcohol
  2. Smoking
  3. Red meat
  4. Soft drinks
  5. Coffee
  6. Chocolates

Here’s wishing you a fracture free life ahead.