Cover Story

  • Finding Their Way

    “Dolores was the first to be diagnosed in her sixties, and she was 71 when she died in 2008,” says Carla, referring to her husband’s sister, as she explains the chronology of Alzheimer’s disease in the Munoz family. “Then Carmen’s husband Ted, who was the oldest, was diagnosed, and he died in 2012 at 79. My husband Freddie (Alfred) was diagnosed around the same time as Ted, and he died in September 2013 at 75. Jeannie’s husband Bobby, who’s now 80, was diagnosed in 2005; he’s still alive, but living in a care facility.  “We also think the youngest brother has Alzheimer’s, but hasn’t been diagnosed yet,” she continues. “And there’s another brother who’s now 75, with no signs of anything yet.” What were the signs that signaled the disease in the Munoz brothers  before they were diagnosed? Carmen and Ted’s storyCarmen first noticed something when she and Ted attended the Bob Hope Classic in 2004, an annual tradition for them.  “The parking attendant at the... click for more

Features

  • When Alzheimer’s Disease Takes Hold

    Aunt Claire* was 80 and living on California’s central coast when she lost her husband to Alzheimer’s disease in December 2009. Just two and a half years later, her only child, a son, was killed in a car accident. During this period, Aunt... click for more
  • Ready to ride

    Lea Douglass, 66, had suffered from back and leg pain for 20 years. “I’m a hairstylist and I stand for hours every day,” she says. “That’s what the doctors said caused the problem.” The problem was spondylolisthesis, a condition in which a... click for more
  • Dementia-Can We Stem the Tide?

    Diagnosis, Treatment and CaregivingIt is estimated that dementia occurs in 2.5 to 5.5 million Americans. According to the World Health Organization, there are nearly 40 million people suffering from the disease with a yearly increase of 7.7 million.... click for more
  • THERE’S AN APP FOR THAT

    Eisenhower Medical Center recently completed a pilot study of the Mobile Heartbeat MH-CURE (Clinical Urgent REsponse) smartphone application to enhance clinical communications. During the pilot, clinicians significantly reduced the number of steps... click for more
  • TAKE A HIKE

    In the recently published book Wild, the main character leaves everything and everyone she knows to embark on a soul searching journey, hoping to lose her demons, clear her head, and somehow, find herself. Woefully unprepared for the challenges of... click for more
  • Healthy Home Cooking — Doable and Delicious

    It is no secret that living heart healthy helps prevent cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and stroke; however, as recent studies suggest, it may also help prevent Alzheimer’s disease. Eating heart healthy means eating whole foods with a... click for more
  • When Alzheimer’s Disease Takes Hold

    *Names have been changed to protect the patient’s privacyAunt Clai re* was 80 and living on California’s central coast when she lost her husband to Alzheimer’s disease in December 2009. Just two and a half years later, her only child, a son, was... click for more
  • When Medications Don’t Work

    Alice Perez has struggled with depression and anxiety for most of her life. “The day I gave birth to my daughter, my 16-year-old brother was being buried and I couldn’t be there,” the now-58-year-old Thermal resident recalls. “That was when I... click for more
  • Exercise and Alzheimer’s Disease

    Regular exercise has been shown to have many beneficial effects, including reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes, weight loss, strengthening muscles and bones, reducing stress and depression, and improving function and ease of... click for more
  • STILL FLYING HIGH

    At 91, retired aerospace engineer J.W. “Billy” Orr has survived a lot, including the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 and the loss of his wife in 2007. Then, in 2011, he had a heart attack that landed him in the Tennity Emergency Department at... click for more
  • Pelvic Floor Health for Men

    Pelvic floor exercises, known as Kegel contractions, are well known to women, especially women who have given birth. But men, particularly those who have had prostate surgery or radiation therapy for prostate cancer, or have issues of incontinence,... click for more
  • Compassionate Communication

    Recommendations from the Alzheimer’s Association and Liz Ayres, Alzheimer’s Association Volunteer and Caregiver People with Alzheimer’s and other dementias have more difficulty expressing thoughts and emotions; they also have more trouble... click for more
  • Hip, Hip Hooray!

    By last summer, daily life had gotten increasingly challenging for Synthea Hill of La Quinta, then age 54. “I’d been having difficulty walking and was limping,” she says, recalling the previous seven months. “I was in a lot of pain, especially... click for more
  • WINGING IT

    Birds — intelligent, striking and social creatures — are often ignored or missed, and from a distance, they may even appear dull and uninteresting. Look closer, however, and a fascinating story unfolds. In the Coachella Valley, we are fortunate... click for more