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, January 17, 2020

alzheimers news-losing one nights sleep is not good

Image result for organicgreendoctor
when i read those articles i looked back on my medical career at all those nights when i didnt get sleep

when i was a medical student especially my third year i was on call every 3rd night usually most of the year
many if not most of those night calls left you with zero sleep or reduced sleep

as an intern it was even worse
when you were on call you were the first line to see folks and get called
you would go into work at 6am work all day all night all the next day and it was not unusual to not get home until the late afternoon or early evening the next day leaving you with sometimes being up for at least 36 hours straight without sleep
you would crash and sleep as soon as you walked into the door

i use to be an emergency room doctor who worked on 24 hour rotations 3 nights a week
one of those days i would work a clinic the next day

for several years i would moonlight in the emergency room so i would work all day in the clinic then work in the emergency room all night then work the next day all day in the clinic

i also remember once well more than once being up for over 48 hours being on call when i was in private practice delivering babies and taking care of hospital patients and talking phone calls

this was what i was thinking about when i read those articles about how bad it might be to miss even one nights sleep

i can see how the cumulative affect is bad for you over time

amyloid is one of the proteins that accumulates in the brain
it forms plaques killing brain cells
tau protein in the nerve cells unwinds itself and forms tangles which damage the brain cells
the body attacks all this brain cell damage trying to repair it with inflammation
you end up with alzheimers disease

now back to losing one nights sleep
you accumulate amyloid and tau protein naturally
the body has a garbage crew that will come in and clean up this extra stuff thats not needed
one of the garbage men are called microglia
they go in and pickup and clean up all this garbage ie amyloid and tau protein and clean up the brain
it works this system by happening when the brain is resting
when you are in your deep sleep
a requirement

like a street sweeper sweeping the streets during full traffic
a lot of debris gets left on the streets
so it is with the brain
a lot of amyloid and tau gets left to cause nerve and brain cell damage if you dont get good sleep

i do wonder how much of that stuff accumulated over those early years of my medical career from not sleeping as much as i should have

since i have been on aricept (donepezil) for the last 9+years i have lost sleep every night since then
usually only getting 5-6 hours each night
i compensate though since im retired by doing afternoon naps of 1-2 hours each day
hoping that adding those numbers together will overcome losing that nighttime sleep

so in these articles
linked here
linked here
they discuss what happens when you lose one nights sleep

in these studies young healthy men losing one nights sleep lead to an elevated tau protein in the blood
its been shown that having elevated tau protein in the blood can lead to elevated levels in the brain which can over time cause damage
also losing sleep like this can lead to amyloid accumulation as shown in another study

i do wonder how much damage was done from the lack of sleep early on in my career
how much has been done since i have had trouble sleeping from taking the aricept (donepezil)

think about this sleep thing
get a good nights sleep
youll feel better the next day

you might have instead of sheep jumping over the fence to count
you might hear those street sweepers and garbage trucks up in your brain cleaning out that amyloid and tau thats accumulated

add adequate sleep to those healthy lifestyles to follow to slow down the risk for alzheimers disease

the organicgreen doctor

No comments:

Post a Comment