metabolic syndrome
    Metabolic Syndrome
  40% of the population has metabolic syndrome.  Very few, however, know about it or have been screened for it.

People at risk for this syndrome are people with high cholesterol, high blood pressure, overweight, waist circumference greater than 40 inches in men and greater than 35 inches in women, a family

history of diabetes, a family history of premature heart attacks and strokes, a history of polycystic ovaries, hirsutism (excessive facial hair), diabetes, prior history of heart attack and/or stroke, impaired glucose tolerance test, history of gestational diabetes, history of having children born heaver than 9 pounds, and a smoking history.

Metabolic syndrome is easy to diagnose and new treatments are available which can change the risk of heart attacks, strokes, and diabetes.

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A service of the National Library of Medicine And the National Institutes of Health


Avoiding falls is an important safety consideration.   Falls can be serious at any age, and breaking a bone due to a fall becomes more likely as a person ages.  For people with osteoporosis whose bones have become increasingly fragile, falls can be especially dangerous.  While healing, the fracture often limits activities, and sometimes surgery and physical therapy are required.

Even though bones do no break after every fall, a person who has fallen and broken a bone usually becomes fearful of falling again.  As a result, she or he may limit activities for the sake of “safety.”  Among Americans ages 65 and older, fall-related injuries are the leading cause of death due to unintentional injuries, highlighting the importance of fall prevention as part of a safety program.    Use the following checklist to decrease the risk of falling and suffering a fracture.

  • Get up slowly from lying or sitting, as low blood pressure can cause dizziness.
  • Install sturdy handrails on both sides of all stairways.
  • Mark the first and last steps with bright or fluorescent non-skid tape.
  • Use the maximum recommended wattage for light fixtures to ensure adequate lighting in every room.
  • Do not walk across a dark room.  Place lights within easy reach when entering each room and in halls, as well as both the top and bottom of stairways.
  • Keep all floor surfaces free of clutter and objects that may cause a fall.
  • Install a telephone in as many rooms as possible so it will be easily accessible in case of a fall.
  • Consider using a cordless or mobile phone to avoid rushing to answer the phone, and to call for help if a fall occurs.
  • Avoid walking around in stocking feet, especially on wood, linoleum, tile, or marble floors.
  • When entering rooms, be aware of differences in floor levels and thresholds.
  • Train pets not to sit in areas where people walk; stepping on a cat or dog can cause a fall.

  • Keep low furniture, such as footstools and coffee tables, out of traffic areas.
  • Remove electric cords and telephone wires from walkways.
  • Buy chairs and couches that are easy to get in and out of.
  • Cover slippery surfaces with carpets or rugs backed with non-skid material.
  • Store frequently used items in easy-to-reach cupboards to eliminate the need to climb ladders or stools.
  • Use a long-handled grasping device to reach objects on high shelves.
  • If a stepping-stool is used, make certain it is a sturdy one with a handrail and wide steps.
  • Avoid floor wax, or use non-skid wax.  Keep floor surfaces smooth, but not slippery.
  • Use only throw rugs that have non-skid backing.
  • Clean up spills immediately, and allow the area to dry before walking over it.