welcome to the organic green doctor blog

i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Friday, February 22, 2019

organicgreendoctor: alzheimers news-you can have it when im through wi...

organicgreendoctor: alzheimers news-you can have it when im through wi...: ALZHEIMERS NEWS-YOU CAN HAVE IT WHEN IM THROUGH WITH IT when i say that to them they sort of get quiet and stare at me for a second some ...

alzheimers news-you can have it when im through with it

ALZHEIMERS NEWS-YOU CAN HAVE IT WHEN IM THROUGH WITH IT
Image result for organicgreendoctor
when i say that to them they sort of get quiet and stare at me for a second
some have got teary eyed
what am i talking about
well
its my brain

i think its an important brain
why
they have a series of mri scans of the brain over the last 8 1/2 years
more than 10
so
they can line all those up and look at them
serial changes can be seen over time
like those cartoons you can draw on cards so that when you thumb through them there is this cartoon that runs across your visual field

Image result for oraganicgreendoctor amyvid pet scan
then
they can line up my amyvid pet scans that have been done
i have lost count of how many i think ive had 4 or 5
the amyvid shows up the alzheimers causing amyloid protein in the brain
so as they thumb through them in my case they should see it accumulating over the 5 years of the adni study where i wasnt being treated with a drug but was just been monitored so they could watch it grow more and more in my brain
then
when i entered the biogen aducanumab study they did an initial amyvid pet scan that was positive
now although i havent seen the scans and more than likely never will
as they look at them over time they will see less and less of the amyloid in the brain scans so that eventually it the scan will be read as negative
like the scan above on the left

now i have around 6 more years at least of taking this stuff so there will be more scans for them to look at
after that i plan to continue with more studies as they become available

Image result for oraganicgreendoctor.com alzheimers brain slide
so one day when my time on this earth is over
i want them to be able to hold my brain in their hands and then process it so that they can see with the naked eye and with the microscope what actually really happened during all this time when i was taking all those supplements doing all those healthy things taking those experimental drugs taking that alzheimers drug aricept (donepezil)
did all that i did and they did
well did it make a difference

somehow someway maybe all this will help someone else
maybe advance the alzheimers knowledge forward some

so
ive always said i would never donate my body to a medical school or science after going through human anatomy working on my own cadaver
i did think some though about our cadaver that person how many folks maybe benefited from the knowledge i gained from understanding the human anatomy
maybe that knowledge saved a life or saved someone some misery

so
i want my brain to be used to maybe advance someones knowledge
so
i have been working on having my brain donated to ucla when i die
here is the form i had to sign
my wife she and my family understand thats what i want done
when i die

it was quite surreal when i completed that form
signed and dated it
then
stopped to look at real good
thats when it all sunk in to my brain

i dont know if ive ever seen someone sign their own autopsy forms before
im sure im not the first

so
my body will be shipped to ucla where they will harvest my brain
they process it analyzing it for how all this stuff worked out that i did to fight this disease
something that a biopsy or scan wouldnt show
then
i get picked up and brought back to the mortuary for my final disposition
i have decided to be cremated after the brain is harvested

like the tv show
the final answer is...

now i know what harvesting a brain means since i did that for a year as a morgue attendant when i was in medical school
i know what and how its done

so i understand the process so i feel like i am quite capable of making a decision on this

yep
they can have it when i done with it
hopefully it will help some in this battle against alzheimers

the organicgreen doctor

Thursday, February 21, 2019

organicgreendoctor: sb country n news-we keep losing them

organicgreendoctor: sb country n news-we keep losing them: SB COUNTRY N NEWS-WE KEEP LOSING THEM yesterday we left our condo around 530 am on our way to ucla for my infusion of the experimental alz...

sb country n news-we keep losing them

SB COUNTRY N NEWS-WE KEEP LOSING THEM
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yesterday we left our condo around 530 am on our way to ucla for my infusion of the experimental alzheimers treatment drug biogens aducanumab
by the way i have been on it now for two years and have another 6+ years to go
my memory testing earlier this month was in the normal range
why
maybe this drug or maybe all the healthy things i and we are doing or maybe both

as we walked out onto the courtyard in the crisp cool air of the early morning right before dawn bursts onto the sky we both paused and looked up at the almost close enough for us full moon so bright in the sky
i took a slow deep deep breath then sighed enjoying the crisp burning feeling that cool air made deep down in my chest
it made the rest of the day better stopping and seeing that moon and breathing that air

on the drive to ucla from santa barbara there is this stretch of the hwy 101 just before dawn that is so picturesque so calming that you only get at this time each morning when the weather is clear and crisp like this
i was driving while my wife she worked on her crackberry iphone
i looked out over the ocean out into the distance there was this long row of oil platforms that parallel the hwy 101 that seems to go for miles and miles
they are pretty with all their lights miles out in the ocean
you can also see miles and miles of ocean waves in that moonlight
yes
pretty but i kept in mind that one of these oil platforms was the ones that leaked all that oil onto the beaches of santa barbara and montecito in the late 1960s that ruined the economy of the area for several years

its also that leak that spawned the green environmental movement the earth day movement we know today
when you live here and see what importance a clean healthy environment is to this areas economy
it makes you feel different about those oil wells when you look at them

as i drove along my mind then drifted back to my organic garden plots at the community garden where i garden
i got to thinking about planting my garden and about the environment of the garden
my mind drifted to the good insects for the garden

Image result for organicgreendoctor.com
every time i garden there are these insects i look for in the garden
since
if they are present i know we are doing a good job

bees
butterflies
ladybugs

when i see them i know my garden will probably do well

now in my plot i try to make sure something is blooming all the time
for now i have calendula wildflowers arugula two types flowering my cabbage i let go to seed so they are flowering my cover crops peas and beans and sweet pea vines are flowering now
soon when i get my spring veggies planted they will all be blooming
so in my plots i am doing my part
the bees are happy soon the butterflies and ladybugs will be there also and will be smiling

then
i read this article about the insects becoming extinct from the guardian
we are losing 2.5% of the insects each year
do the math
in 10 years we will have lost 25%
in 20 years we will have lost 50%

this is the bad part
when we go further than that and start approaching 100%
we might all starve to death
yes
we might all starve to death
do the math
for some of you that will be in your lifetime or at least in your kids lifetime

look around where you live
start looking for these good guys
do what you can to make them happy

the biggest threat to these insects ie to us are insecticides used in agriculture and of course other environmental insults

it does seem ironic doesnt it that producing the food we all need may be what kills us all eventually

then
as we drove further to ucla
as the sun bursted over the mountains heading away from the ocean to the mountains this azure color of the sky with its almost pinkish orangish reddish clouds over the mountains
made
my wife she and i to take a deep breath again and sigh at what just transpired in our minds

will ms b be ok when we are gone

our day has begun

the organicgreen doctor

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

organicgreendoctor: tomatoville

organicgreendoctor: tomatoville: TOMATOVILLE as i was moving my tomato plants from our sliding doors night time spot to a warmer sunnier spot on our front patio where the...

tomatoville

TOMATOVILLE
as i was moving my tomato plants from our sliding doors night time spot to a warmer sunnier spot on our front patio where they will get 6-8 hours of sun up against the side of the wall that warms up as the day goes on
well my wife she says
this looks like tomatoville in our living room
but
she tolerates it since she knows what will be the reward in a few weeks if this is all successful

now
she doesnt get to taste that first juicy tomato
that taster will be me as im working in my garden
its my reward

my biggest battle is to keep her and her mom away from my green tomatoes since they like to pick them and fry them
yes
i do eat them when they fry them but i want those first tomatoes to turn red and ripe

its a yearly battle i have with them
luckily our garden area is locked and i have the pass code and they dont

every year even when i was in texas i always planted my tomatoes early
sometimes i would win
sometimes i would lose
to nature in the form of freezing temps

last year here it was warmer so i was able to put them in the ground about this time
heck we hardly turned our heater on all winter last year
this year is different
eg
when i got up this morning it was 33 degrees
now that may not freeze a new tomato plant but it sure can damage it though so that it may not grow well or may even die
so
back to my porch and living room until its warmer

i have designated 6 spots in my garden for 6 tomatoes since i have limited gardening space
so i have to chose which ones did well last year and which ones we liked the best

here is my list
early girl   celebrity   juliet   sweet 100   black krim    cherokee purple  thats it
recently in my garlic bed there popped up this volunteer tomato
its near the spot where i grew a tomato someone gave me called mexican mini cherry which was a good producer
so im presuming thats the one that growing
when they volunteer like that it seems nature plants them correctly so i plan to add that to my list
based on previous history ill  probably find more spots for more tomatoes
if you are a gardener you understand

i buy tomatoes as soon as i see them show up in the nursery
i plant them in a 3 gallon pot until its time to plant them in the garden

by the time i do they are well hardened off
that means they have been allowed to adapt to the weather since i move them in and out of the condo to the outside environment every day

the first one i got was an early girl in the picture above
it was obtained near the end of january
it was potted in this 3 gallon bucket
its is now as tall as my belt line on my jeans
this picture was from 3 weeks ago

it now has one tomato growing with more coming
im carefully thumping the flowers each day to spread around the pollen
plus its windy here some now so when its outside the wind does that also

my plan is to transplant it into the ground this sunday since the temperatures seem to be making that upward jump for the spring
i plan to dig a hole and a trench in the garden
then partially lay this on it side so it can root all along its trunk leaving as little as possible sticking up out of the ground
in the hole i will put some antacid for calcium and a sprinkling of an organic fertilizer and several handfuls of my own organic worm compost
ill water it in with a good soaking of fish emulsion sea weed molasses mixture
then
around the tomato i will put a double layer of black plastic about 3 ft in diameter to help warm the soil around the tomato
my new tomato cage will be placed over it
this cage then will be wrapped with a thick white row cover to keep the tomato warm until the weather warms up this spring

for those of you who are tomato lovers you will understand all this work im doing to get that first tomato

the rest of the tomatoes will be transplanted in march as the spring warms up

now i did this in texas each year and it seemed like a late freeze would wipe them out every year
but
luckily here in santa barbara it rarely if ever freezes
except
maybe last night

i promise i will post a picture of the first ripe tomato from this early girl tomato
i also promise that tomato will never make it out of the garden

the organicgreen doctor

Monday, February 18, 2019

organicgreendoctor: whats their risk

organicgreendoctor: whats their risk: WHATS THEIR RISK ladies stop a minute and look at your male loved one like a boyfriend husband brother dad grandfather what are they at...

whats their risk

WHATS THEIR RISK
ladies stop a minute and look at your male loved one like a boyfriend husband brother dad grandfather

what are they at risk of dying from

if they are young its car accident gun violence drug overdose
as they age you can start adding heart attack to the list
then as they get a little older add stroke to the list and maybe cancer
then as they get even older probably add alzheimers disease to the list

one that might be easily tested for is serious heart problems
the risk starts increasing probably around the mid thirties based on the history of obesity cholesterol high blood pressure exercise history smoking history

according to this article you can do this easy test on your loved one

in fact i did it on myself this morning right before i started writing todays blog

now its been awhile
but
i was able to do 10 before my painful shoulder flared up and i had to stop
so im not sure how many i could do
im not sure if i could do 40 though

now after reading the article i made sure i could do 11 push ups

i thought of menfolk i know
i realize that if they try to do a push up even if they extended their arms all the way
they would still not be able to touch the floor
they would be resting on their tummies
like a walrus or reverse turtle

i would consider that a failed test
wouldnt you

it seems that research from harvard done on firemen found if they could do at least 40 push ups their risk of a significant cardiac event in the next 10 years would be reduced by 96% compared to those who could do less than 10 push ups
these firemen were followed for 10 years and those 37 who had a significant cardiovascular event 36 of them couldnt do more than 10 push ups

these cardiovascular events were heart failure sudden death documented cardiovascular disease

40 push ups seemed to be the threshold on testing for these fireman for reduced heart issues

so
i started ticking off 10 men i know that are friends relatives acquaintances over the age of 30
the number who would pass the push up stress test for cardiovascular disease
was
2

so ladies
do this at home stress test
score your men
if they dont pass
well
they have work to do

then
make sure they have a will disability insurance life insurance and maybe long term care insurance
just saying

now im sure i would have passed if it wasnt for my bum left shoulder...

the organicgreen doctor

Friday, February 15, 2019

organicgreendoctor: alzheimers news-why women get it more than men

organicgreendoctor: alzheimers news-why women get it more than men: ALZHEIMERS NEWS-WHY WOMEN GET IT MORE THAN MEN every 65 seconds a brain develops alzheimers disease 2/3 of those are female brains why ...

alzheimers news-why women get it more than men

ALZHEIMERS NEWS-WHY WOMEN GET IT MORE THAN MEN
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every 65 seconds a brain develops alzheimers disease
2/3 of those are female brains

why

we dont really know for sure

heres what we know and what we think could be reasons why

if a women has the apoe 4 gene like i have they are at a greater risk for developing late onset alzheimers than men are
the apoe 4 gene is a risk factor for late onset alzheimers

in studies of prealzheimers patients those are the ones that have no symptoms yet but have positive scans for the bad amyloid and the tau proteins it is noted that women have more amyloid and tau proteins in their brain

women live longer than men so that statistically makes them more likely to develop alzheimers
men tend to die younger with heart disease

women make up 60% of the caregivers
another risk factor for alzheimers disease for caregivers may be due to the increased stress lack of sleep and not taking care of their own health not exercising not getting social interactions

the jury is out if its due to the lack of estrogen during perimenopause and menopause
some think its the lack of sleep and stress during this time that may be contributing
hormone replacement has not been shown to make a difference
more studies on the menopausal effect are being done

it may be due to social more than physical reasons
generally women live more stressful lives get less sleep get less exercise may live in lower social economic situations being pregnant and being post partum less educational opportunities..........
im sure you women readers can add more to this list
all these are known modifiable lifetime risk factors for alzheimers disease

when you add all these up in a womens lifetime the result is that they have an increased rate of cognitive decline than men

it is probably mostly social reasons why there is this discrepancy in the rates between men and women
the treatment for this discrepancy is altering social factors which we as a society do a poor job of correcting

so there may not be a good prescription for women to fix this

maybe the fact that women are becoming more involved in politics and the work force and overall getting more opportunities may be the best treatment to slow this disease down

i hope so

the organicgreen doctor

Thursday, February 14, 2019

organicgreendoctor: it is going to change

organicgreendoctor: it is going to change: IT IS GOING TO CHANGE my view on all this is that there is a natural cyclical thing that happens with nature if you look way back as far...

it is going to change

IT IS GOING TO CHANGE
my view on all this is that there is a natural cyclical thing that happens with nature
if you look way back as far as we can look this has been happening
we are in one of those swings
i think that us humans are making those swings wider
not for the best either

the amount of ice thats melting all over the earth
that water has to go somewhere and cause changes
i think we are in one of those changing times now

its predicted looking at sea level rising maps for this area that where we live will be safe since we are up an steady incline from the beach to the mountains
many things along the beach will be gone and eroded away especially some of our most favorite places to walk and hike

this morning i ran across this interactive map from the university of maryland
you type in your city or one thats listed thats close by
up will come what they predict the weather in that city will be like in 2080 if we dont change anything we are doing like polluting the air and the water and removing trees and burning things in the air
eg the crop burning in central america and south america is having an effect since all that smoke gets in the air and all those trees and plants are burned up
add that to all the stuff that gets dumped into the air

here is the link to the interactive map

so i looked at 3 cities where we have lived
little rock
austin
santa barbara

little rock weather will be like the weather now in southern louisiana near new orleans in a town called hammon la
the summer will be 0.2 degrees f warmer and about 70% wetter
oh my how miserable that heat will be in arkansas with that much humidity

austin weather will be like the weather now in nuevo laredo mexico
the summer will be 6.2 degrees warmer and 34% drier
oh its already hot enough there in the summer
im sure things will really be brown around austin
this means more fires im sure
a few years ago during the drought when the weather was like this
when the winds came the austin area was burning all around it
like in california

santa barbara winter weather will be like it is in glendale california
the winter temps will be about 6 degrees warmer and about 25% drier
we had that when we first moved here and what happened were fires all around us
followed by mud and debris flows out of the mountains when it rained causing several deaths and mass destruction along its path

los angeles weather will be like las palmas mexico in the southern tip of baja california
it will be warmer and wetter

so it seems looking at this predictive interactive map that almost no matter what city you type in nothing better shows up

we have to do something to change as much of this as we can

is going to happen but maybe we can slow it down

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

learning side effects

LEARNING SIDE EFFECTS
the drug on the left is an anti inflammatory drug called prolensa
for me it was given to decrease the inflammation in the right eye after my double cataract surgery in that eye
ive been on it now for over 30 days

prolensa is bromfenac
it is a nonsteroidal drug that was once marketed as duract used to treat acute pain but was removed from the market due to hepatotoxicity
being a nonsteroidal it has all the nonsteroidal side effects that you see on the ibuprofen and aspirin and naproxyn bottles

when you put eye drops in the eye some of it goes down the tear duct down the back of the throat then down the esophagus then into the stomach

if you are one of those who have indigestion or stomach pain from nonsteroidals then thats what might happen

as  a physician i knew all that

so for several days when it came time for lunch i wasnt hungry
yesterday my stomach was hurting me as i thought whats going on here
then
this light came on in my brain
its the prolensa
since
this is what happens anytime i take a nonsteroidal so i usually use acetaminophen for pain or headaches

i knew all this but what if i didnt know or understand
i had three more weeks to take this stuff
now i have zero weeks since i stopped taking it

after my cataract surgery twice in two days i ended up on 5 eye drops
now im down to one as of today
since ive figured out whats going on

but
what if i didnt know
my guess is no one else would have figured it out

theres more stories

i am on aricept (donepezil) for my mild cognitive impairment due to alzheimers disease
when i started taking it i knew all about the side effects and knew what to expect
i knew that it would take a few weeks before some of the side effects would get better or go away
some never would
now i ordered that drug when in practice and when i was given the prescription to take the doctors that would be me and my neurologist didnt really explain all this

when i became a patient i read up on the side effects and was ready
originally the worst were blurry vision nausea abdomen pain insomnia leg cramps mild vertigo fatigue vivid dreams some hyperactivity when first taking it

if you happen to catch me an hour or two after ive taken my aricept (donepezil) and had my three cups of coffee you will find me more talkative than usual and you will find me more likely to be doing busy stuff
as the day goes on all that hyperactivity gets replaced with fatigue

i knew all these side effects were coming and i knew i just needed to power through them so i did
now my major side effects are some sleep loss vivid dreams occasional leg cramps morning hyperactivity and afternoon fatigue
the other side effects seem to be less bothersome

not understanding these side effects and not knowing they will get better keep many folks and their families from allowing patients to continue taking the aricept (donepezil)

what happens to people who dont understand all this

not long after retiring i developed pneumonia and was started on an antibiotic called levaquin (levofloxacin)
it was one of the better ones to use for my age group for pneumonia
after a day of taking it i noticed that i couldnt sit still and i couldnt sleep at night
now
i knew from reading and experience that was a side effect of that drug
so
i stopped it and was switched to a different antibiotic
my side effects went away

fast forward to my double on one eye catarct surgeries where i was given an eye antibiotic to take
it was a first cousin to the levaquin called moxifloxacin eye drops
yes the drops go down the tear duct eventually in the stomach where its absorbed there
yes you can get side effects like when you take the oral form

so after a couple of weeks i got to where i couldnt sleep for several days
then
this light came on
its those eye drops
so
i stopped them and within two days i returned back to my usual sleep habits

what do people do who dont have this understanding

you know when you read all those side effects there are so many that its hard to tell which is important or likely
eg
the side effect to the antibiotic eye drop occurs only less than 1% of the time
those are usually ignored unless you are one of those less than 1% patients

in fact
the levaquin and the moxifloxacin eye drops have the side effects i experienced by binding to sites that two of the alzheimers drugs namenda (memantine)  and aricept (donepezil) bind to which may be the reason that these antibiotics caused the hyperactivity and insomnia

neither my neurologist or the ophthalmologist knew this
but
i did
and
im glad i did since i might have gone nutso if i had kept taking that stuff for another two weeks
i stopped them and feel much better

what do people do if they dont understand all this

i was also on a steroid drop after my surgery
some of it also goes down into the stomach and causes some of the side effects that oral steroids do but probably not as much
it probably was also contributing to my insomnia and my abdominal discomfort

my blood pressure pill i took in the morning caused my blood pressure to drop two hours later
i would get dizzy and have to sit down while gardening
i understood that so i take it at bedtime and have no issues now

i guess some patients just get worse so they reach a point where the drug surpasses its benefits with these side effects
some get sicker some die im afraid

whats the solution

i dont really have one for you non medical folks
at least
i can read about them and understand them

thank goodness for google

the organicgreen doctor

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

i remember when

I REMEMBER WHEN
Image result for organicgreendoctor
this weekend as i was working with around 20 premed students who volunteered at the community garden where i have my garden plot i thought they are me about 40 years ago

as i looked at those 20 who wanted to be doctors i realized statistically that only about 8 of them would make it to medical school
the other 12  although for various reasons even though they would be quite qualified wont make it

which ones i thought would make as i looked and interacted with them
i could identify a few that would make it
one was the female that i want ms b to be like
another was a student who although he wants to be in emergency medicine seemed more like the family practice type
he even like i did while in college works in an emergency room here locally as an assistant

now i dont know all their stories but i know mine
i almost didnt make it
even though my goal from middle school was to be a family doctor

in high school from my sophomore year on i worked as an orderly on weekends and during holidays doing patient care and assisting and observing a lot that many students dont get to see
i saw births and deaths and surgeries and happiness and sadness

i started college with an academic scholarship that paid for my books and tuition and fees
fees are those things if youve ever paid for someones college education that add up and sneak up on you as they fee you for everything
all i had to pay for was my room and board
so i tried to work all weekend from friday to sunday and go to school
i wasnt ready academically and socially and psychological for college
so i didnt make it through the semester
so i dropped out

then for two years i worked various jobs as an orderly as a bag inspector at a paper bag company as a worker on a road bridge crew
i was not really being a productive human being
then
my historian brother convinced me to move in with him where he was stationed in california
a friend of  his helped me get a job as an orderly at the local hospital
i later became an emergency room technician assisting doctors and nurses in the emergency room
again i got to do and see a lot of medical things

my historian brother convinced me to take some courses a the local junior college
i chose english and intermediate algebra as my first two courses
i also worked full time
i managed to get an a in each class
after that i took more classes and finished the junior college with a good gpa

i then transferred to the university of california system the same one these kids are in
majoring in biology with at no time doubting what my ultimate goal was
granted in the past that goal seemed way out of reach

my wife she and i got married the weekend before we transferred to the 4 year school
my grades werent good my first quarter there
i think i made my first and only d and c while i was in college
i after that semester thought my goal would not be obtained
again

the competition back then was even greater for med school slots
out of those 20 if they were applying back then only 2-4 would probably get accepted

luckily the rest of my career went well and i made a good gpa by the time i graduated
a gpa that was in the mid range of those accepted to medical school

i opted to sit out a year after graduation to reestablish my residency in my home state
i then applied for medical school after living there for a year
this required me to wait two years after college graduation before starting medical school
i got accepted on my first try
some folks take several attempts or some go out of the country
i only applied to one school
during those two years waiting i worked a year as a lab tech and spent a year working first for 7 hours in a chicken processing plant where i swore they played music from the movie deliverance then 3 months in a factory making craftsman tools then 9 months working as a lab assistant in the animal science department while my wife she was in graduate school

then after all that i made it to medical school
unlike many of these students who have a lot of college debt and will have a lot of medical school debt
i mange to avoid that since the federal programs and california had more scholarship and grants available for students to pay for school
now these are mostly not available and schools seem to just cost more

i had some loans but not like many others had
uncle sam paid for my last 3 years of medical school and i served back those 3 years in an undeserved area to fulfill that obligation even though reagan cut that funding for the program after i graduated

so i reflected back as i worked and visited with those students
im sure many of them are withstanding large debts just to get through college
then
if they attend medical school somewhere their debt will probably double or triple

i finished with a school debt from college and medical school of around $15,000
now students can have between $100,000 to $400,000 of school debt

this debt will hamper them throughout their medical careers affecting their ability to buy a home and save for retirement and probably finance their kids education
add to that the fact that medicine is changing and doctors incomes are dropping each year

i was talking to my historian brother this weekend and he said
you know we are both lucky as we and our other 6 siblings to have been born when we did as most of us managed to get through college and professional school without having debt that followed us into retirement

yes its the same story getting into school but how it gets paid for has changed
not for the best
not for the students
not for our society

maybe some of them will read this blog today and not give up on their dreams

yes
i remember when
i realize im one lucky guy to have reached my goals

the organicgreen doctor

Monday, February 11, 2019

dear ms b-be like them

DEAR MS B-BE LIKE THEM

ms b
this weekend when i got home from volunteering at the trinity garden with a group of 20 premed fraternity students from the university of california at santa barbara where they worked in the garden
i said to my wife she thats your gmajo i want ms b to be like her
who she said
one of the students was from upper new england she being a 2nd or 3rd year student but i dont remember which specialty she wanted to go into yet
at least now in 2018 she can do whatever specialty she wants to do
they dont get limited to just men now especially the surgical specialties
an aside over half of the medical students in the us are female


i asked her how did you chose ucsb
she said i always wanted to live here so i applied to all the university of california schools and ended up here in santa barbara
lucky you i told her getting to live in this area in that campus overlooking the ocean

oh i said do you have family here
no she said

later we talked about traveling
she said oh ive gone to europe and canada and other places by myself and traveled throughout the countries
i told her of two of our young female acquaintances who did the same thing
they all seemed to have this almost independent pioneer spirit and arent too afraid to do things others are i guess afraid to do

not me i told her if it requires a passport then count me out

as i told my wife she this story she agreed with me
yes ms b we want you to be just like that student

then my wife she said did you see that super bowl video
what video
the one with marshawn lynch grabbing that cake and the melee that occurred with all those football stars
did you see that girl in the red dress at the end of the video catch that football
do that spin move and dodge all those nfl players
then throw to ball to someone else
thats her
sam gorden
what you mean her
thats the girl in the video
so i watched the commercial again
then
i watched the video of the red dress girl when she was younger

so
ms b
after watching that video of that red dress girl
ms b
i want you to be just like her

use these two as your mentors and youll do well

if you have a daughter or niece or granddaughter who plays sports
i suggest you click on this link or the link below and watch the red dress girl playing sports when she was younger

click here to read the article on the girl and see the video
you will definitely be impressed
the video in the article is more impressive than the video below
or
view the you tube video below

as i saw her running with that ball tucked under her arm with that pony tail flowing in the air with those boys way behind trying to catch her
i thought
yep ms b that could be you

the organicgreen doctor

Friday, February 8, 2019

alzheimers news-dont let the pressure get to you

ALZHEIMERS NEWS-DONT LET THE PRESSURE GET TO YOU
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over the last several years i get asked this question a lot
what can i do to prevent alzheimers disease

there isnt one good answer
but
there are a few things at the top of the list

diet
exercise
blood pressure control

if you wanted to slow down your chances of getting alzheimers disease
these are probably the top three
when you look at them they are also the secret to a lot of other illness like heart disease kidney disease stroke diabetes to name a few
most of those diseases are risk factors for alzheimers disease

which one should be the number one thing to do
its hard to pick
but
today im picking blood pressure control since the first thing you do to control your blood pressure is to eat correctly lose weight if you are obese and exercise
the first prescription for blood pressure control will be these things

doing these things plus controlling my blood pressure to the new normals may be one of the reasons i have not progressed down the alzheimers cliff yet

in a study recently called the sprint study it was found that keeping the blood pressure down below 130/80 made a difference in memory loss as the participants aged

here is a link to an article on the sprint study

alzheimers starts first in the brain as amyloid gets deposited then tau proteins get deposited
this all starts before symptoms start
this is called prealzheimers

then mild memory loss starts usually as short term memory loss
if these folks have memory testing its slightly abnormal and their scans for amyloid are positive
they have mild cognitive impairment which is what i have

then as the memory worsens they develop full blown alzheimers disease

all alzheimers patients go through these stages
prealzheimers then mild cognitive impairment then alzheimers disease

in the sprint study it seemed that controlling blood pressure below 130/80 decreased the incidence of mild cognitive impairment in the study group by 20% and by doing so may have prevented some of them from getting alzheimers disease and at least slowed down the disease some

remember those of us that are in this alzheimers pit we all would gladly accept some slowing down of the disease
just imagine getting a 5 year delay on your alzheimers disease
what things could your affected loved ones have got to see that they missed
a wedding a graduation a birth etc
yep
we would take that in a heart beat

it does seem that a more aggressive approach to blood pressure control would and does make a difference in how fast someone develops symptoms

in fact
this study was stopped because it was found that those in the tightly controlled blood pressure group developed less cardiovascular events
it was felt to be unethical to allow folks to not be in the group that tightly controlled blood pressure
so the study was discontinued and those other folks got better blood pressure control

the study did continue to follow the mild cognitive folks longer

blood pressure control with the new standards less than 130/80 makes a difference in the development of mild cognitive impairment the step right before you fall off the path into the abyss of alzheimers disease

so
dont let the pressure get to you
keep yours under control
its so easy to do
the rewards are great
like seeing a relative graduate get married have a child

i control mine with diet exercise and for a few pennies a day a prescription pill
there is no excuse to not do this
reap the rewards

the organicgreen doctor

Thursday, February 7, 2019

sb country n garden news-beano

SB COUNTRY N GARDEN NEWS-BEANO
beanoƂ® Tablets
beanogas.com

beano is a product that you put in your beans that keeps your intestine from producing too much gas
what it does is take all the fun out of eating beans
you can go to the link above for more info

we try to eat beans at least one night a week
i have a recipe i use that makes a flavorful batch of beans
the bean we usually eat is what we call billie beans after my motherinlaw
she found these for us at a mexican food market in this area
when we lived in texas she use to ship us 5 lbs of them

using my skills and my rainwater brothers skills we finally identified them as peruvan beans that are eaten a lot in mexico and countries south of there

since we started getting those batches coming via the mail i got the idea of going to some of the local mexican grocery stores in texas and later in santa barbara and have found them in packages of 1 lb

we have a mexican store a block away from our condo so we never run out of them
those billie beans
see picture below
in my garden i have a long 20 ft lattice structure of bits of lumber and mulberry branches and string and bamboo that i built
it looks rustic
on this structure which also acts as a barrier to folks walking into my garden i grow my vining or what we call in the south pole beans in the spring and summer and the green sweet peas and their cousins in the fall and winter

i then scatter whereever i can find an empty space a planting of these bush billie beans and the bush green beans and the purple hull peas which we save enough for new years day

this year im trying something ive never done before
thats planting the beans in 6 packs then once they grow large enough i then plant them in the ground
except for the purple hull peas
it just doesnt seem right not putting those purple hull peas right into the ground

so
heres the pictures of the ones i planted

row one are christmas lima beans
its a pretty to look at one
the kids in the garden love to play with these
they have a long growing season
i pick them when the shells are brown then shell the beans out and save them in a quart jar until they are cooked
they have the best flavor of the beans we eat
they cook faster than billie beans or pinto beans or black beans
they have almost a meaty taste to them

row two is a seed i got from a seed swap from the san louis obispo library seed collection
it named after ms winfield a plant breeder
i only was able to get 3 of these so i planted two of them holding one back in reserve
ill use this years crop for seeds for next year
i think these are hard to find from seed companies

row 3 billie beans or peruvan beans
our favorite go to bean
they grow like bush beans
i let the pods turn brown then shell them for cooking

row 4 vine or pole blue lake beans
i grow them on my structure picking them as green string beans
what we dont eat fresh i freeze whole using them in soups stews or grilled veggies

row 4 french baby bush beans
these usually dont make it home as i eat them fresh as i garden
they are thinner than the blue lake beans
we eat them in salads and also grilled or cooked
these are all eaten fresh so we dont get a chance to freeze any

so these beans will keep us busy eating beans this year all organic and fresh from the garden

i think ill hold off on the beano this year though

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

the capricorns

THE CAPRICORNS
Goat.svg
wikepedia

as i watched the game i thought there will not ever be two like this doing this ever again after they quit

as i watched the game which i enjoyed i realize this was a game between 2 old defense goats that know how to design a defense to slow down two good offenses one led by the true goat
that would be tom brady

i didnt mind the low score
its good to see the defenses control the game
like old school football almost

i do wish that both brady and belichick would announce
we be done
lets let someone else some young gun quarterback and coach have a chance
if they dont retire we may be back here again next year
talking about brady and belichick winning again
they are gonna run out of fingers for all those rings if this keeps up

the mvp
should have gone to belichick
but
edelman was the players mvp that day
that guy is like a rabbit running those routes
bet he was active when he was a kid

yes
the patriots did it again and again and again and again and again and again
next year they may do it again

i decided to savor this low scoring game since we may not see this again once they both goats retire

the super bowl is a time for all of us to step back and enjoy the event

the pregame anthem
thats the part i try to see and hear first the america the beautiful then hear the anthem being sung by a well known artist with the american flag and later the jets flying over
i usually get teary eyed and feel patriotic like
dont get rid of this part

the half time show
lets quit politicizing this one
i like that i have been exposed to different types of music at the super bowl that i might not have watched and listened to otherwise
i dont remember a half time show i didnt enjoy
now my wife she i must say seemed to enjoy adams show more than i did
maybe they should just require that all genres of music is covered like country western hip hop r and b and adam levine music and use both male and female singers

the commercials
my two favorites this year was the marshall lynch one and the bud light and game of thrones one
now i like marshall lynch now hes a little different but he does a lot of good in his hometown

the game
a low scoring close game always usually means its a defense chess match which i always have enjoyed
id rather be that then some runaway one sided game

we should leave politics and other problem areas outside on the sidewalk and enjoy the game
quit this being all of us too politically correct

if you want to change things
then vote your conscious and vote your beliefs
dont buy their gear or their tickets to the games or just go after their sponsors
but
lets leave the game alone
lets just sit back and enjoy it

the organicgreen doctor

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

alzheimers news-my yearly

ALZHEIMERS NEWS-MY YEARLY
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each year since december 2010 i go into my treating neurologist for may annual office visit
now since i am in the research study and have several memory tests blood tests mris pet scans each year i only have to be seen in the private neurology clinic once a year

my neurologist i saw at ut southwestern was also one of the investigators on the research studies i participated in
sometimes i saw her on the research side and sometimes i saw one of the other investigators
the same is true at ucla
my private neurologist i see there is also one of the investigators for the research study i am in now
i usually see her a few times a year on the research side
but

the two areas
the private side
the research side
have to be kept separate
the labs scans memory tests pet scans done on the research side even isnt seen by the neurologist
someone contracted by biogen somewhere like in massachusetts sees my reports and scans but only sees me as a number
eg
i might be 123456
with no name

occasionally like last year my white count dropped slightly so she got the result and i sent it to my primary care doctor
a repeat white count was normal
otherwise
the private doctors dont see anything i do on the research side

so in order for me to get my prescription for the aricept (donepezil) i have to see the private neurologist once a year
some things have to be repeated by her that i had done on the research side
like
the memory tests
the full neurological history and exam

now
she knows for example even though she hasnt seen my amyvid pet scan of the brain that it is positive for abnormal plaques and clumps of amyloid
she also knows that my initial memory tests werent normal
why
i wouldnt be in the study unless they were all abnormal
so
she hasnt seen them she just knows they arent normal

each year over the last going on 9 years as i go in for this office visit it makes me rethink things a lot
am i ready for all this thats coming down the pike
are we ready for all this
no
we arent ready
i dont think anyone can be ready when it all goes into overdrive and takes off
but
we can be somewhat prepared as much as you can be
no
you arent ever fully prepared

discussed with my wife she check
got a will check
got a power of attorney check
got a healthcare power of attorney check
got a living will check
got long term care insurance check  note i came close real close to not being able to ever get this one
got my family knowing whats going on check
am i ready
well
no im not and never will be but we are and i am close

so i think about all this also a lot on my anniversary of getting diagnosed and stopping work
i have marked december 22 2010 as that date
i read my blogs around that time and take a few minutes to myself to just sit and think in an almost meditative mood all to myself
then i get up and move on

i do the same thing again
on
my moms birthday
my younger brothers birthday
i shed a tear sigh and move on

that what ive decided to do is move on


at my neurology visit its hard to do a memory test since ive done so many so my neurologist uses a different version of the memory tests each time
it tests the same things but the questions are just different even the pictures and the animals are different

so
yesterday
i took the moca test a standard test that will pick up mild cognitive impairment and alzheimers disease
its probably the best in the office one to use
this one had all the questions different than the research ones i do
i can even ask the questions before they can but not on this one
so
i self scored it as i went along
i feel like i scored in the normal range
i asked my wife she who has to go to this visit
how did you score i asked
she always says the wrong one is getting their memory tested

my neurological history and physical exam was normal
my only issue as has been the case over the last 8 years has been my issue with sleep
i realize as long as i take the aricept (donepezil) i will struggle with this
ive learned how to deal with by scheduling a midday nap on my schedule each day

we talked about whether stopping my aricept (donepezil) would be a consideration
i know stopping it will allow my sleep to return back to normal
but
i and she knows that since i started this drug early in my disease that i am probably reaping the benefit of the drug slowing down symptoms more than most folks on it since i started it so early on in the disease process

i though know the score
if my experimental drug aducanumab doesnt do its thing in slowing down the disease that as the disease progresses it will reach that point where the aricept (donepezil) wont work anymore like it does in all alzheimers patients who take it
off the alzheimers cliff i will go like my mother and brother did
but
until that happens i plan to continue to take it

if the aducanumab works well thats just some great icing on the cake that i was allowed along with 1500+ folks to eat and enjoy

so
i got a 12 month refill of my drug

she also is part of a group thats working on an algorithm for primary care providers to follow when someone presents with memory issues in the primary cares office
you can just follow the flow of the diagram to help decide what needs to done
she wanted me to look at it to see what i think

i think i told her what a good tool to have to use in the office
i wish i had something like that to use when i was in practice
a quick reference to get the testing done to start a memory evaluation if its needed
i look forward to seeing the final product

some of this money for the work they did was from that infrastructure thing i wrote about last week
what a good place to start in the primary care providers office

so
as i drove home that day by myself for the two hour drive back home to santa barbara
well
i thought about all this a lot
im glad i was alone that day

im lucky i thought to myself
real lucky
ive gotten this reprieve from this disease that others havent got a chance to have

these last 8 years have been an enjoyable 8 years that ill never ever regret getting to enjoy

im good

the organicgreen doctor

Friday, February 1, 2019

alzheimers news-be bold

ALZHEIMERS NEWS-BE BOLD
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this disease may break the healthcare piggyback if something isnt done
something bold needs to be done
so
a first step was taken recently in congress called the bold act which stands for
building our largest dementia infrastructure for alzheimers act
it passed the senate by a voice vote
it passed the house by a vote of 361-3
why would you vote against this huh
the president signed it in december 2018
it was a bipartisan bill
demonstrating that congress can sometimes work for the good of the country

this bill gives 100 million dollars to be used over 5 years to build up the infrastructure for alzheimers
remember now that alzheimers will break our budget if we dont do something
we cant afford not to do something about this disease
it will consume medicare and medicaid if we dont do something
100 million is a drop in the bucket of what this disease is about to cost us

congress also recently increased funding for research before the bold act was passed
which should help us find treatment for this disease

for those of us who have done this alzheimers journey or are just now starting it
you know theres a lot missing in our medical and social support systems for this disease

this new act will direct the cdc to get educational and technical assistance and funding
and good accurate data analysis to the public health systems and healthcare providers and others
ie
provide a good infrastructure to prevent to educate to support to treat and to care for those who are affected by this disease
that will be all of us

here is an article on more details at this link
the alzheimers impact website

yes
we have more money but need more for alzheimers research
we now have money for a good infrastructure for alzheimers
we now need a treatment or cure for this disease
thats coming in the future

the organicgreen doctor