Support groups provide help
Losing someone you love isn't easy. The grieving process can be long and may be marked by normal grief responses such as appetite loss, difficulty sleeping, feelings of guilt or regret, inability to concentrate, moodiness, numbness or crying.
Integris Hospice Services can help you get through it. Marla Mercer Cole, a certified grief specialist, is leading a grief support group that will meet on Thursday nights from Jan. 31 to March 7.
The sessions aim to provide “a step-by-step approach for those who wish to resolve their loss issues and move beyond their grief toward a richer quality of life,” according to a news release.
Sessions meet from 6 to 7 p.m. Thursdays in the Fireside Room outside the main sanctuary of Bethany First Church of the Nazarene, 6789 NW 39 Expressway.
To enroll, call 603-1708. The program is free, but space is limited.
Clinical trial planned on disease
The Lynn Health Science Institute in Oklahoma City will be conducting a clinical trial for Alzheimer's patients.
The institute was named by Merck Research Laboratories as a participating site for the 78-week trial, which will evaluate the safety and usefulness of a medication called MK-8931 versus a placebo in patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease.
Merck's MK-8931 is an investigational medicine that is being tested to see if it can modify disease progression and improve symptom control, the release notes.
“We're testing the medication's ability to reduce or reserve plaques and tangles in the brain — certain changes in the protein of the brain that we find in people with Alzheimer's,” said Dr. Carl Griffin, a certified physician investigator for the institute, in the release.
Griffin said he hopes the trial will help its development and test if it can reverse Alzheimer's, something that thus far has been impossible.
To see if you qualify for the trial, call the institute at 447-8839.
Participation is free. Those who are admitted into the study will be compensated for their time.
Upcoming seminars are planned
Diabetes is a serious, chronic disease that has no known cure. The good news is there are things you can do to take control of diabetes and prevent its complications. If you're worried about getting diabetes, there are things you can do to lower your risk.
Diabetes is the sixth-leading cause of death in Oklahoma and can lead to permanent disability and poor health.
Diabetes affects an estimated 25.8 million people in the United States — 18.8 million have been diagnosed, but 7 million are unaware they have the disease, according to data cited by Integris Health from the American Diabetes Association and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Those affected include 10.9 million adults older than age 65. In addition, 79 million people have prediabetic symptoms that may develop into diabetes if left unchecked.
Integris Third Age Life Center invites you to participate in a five-part seminar, “Understanding Diabetes.” The seminar will meet from 9 to 10:30 a.m. once a month from February through June in the basement auditorium of Integris Southwest Medical Center, 4401 S Western Ave.
Each session deals with a different aspect of diabetes management.
Topics and dates are:
Feb. 1 — An overview of diabetes and the disease process.
March 1 — Medications and diabetes management.
April 5 — Nutrition and diabetes management (Part I).
May 3 — Nutrition and diabetes management (Part II).
June 7 — Lifestyle behaviors and diabetes management.
To register, call the Integris HealthLine at 951-2277.
Learn self management
“Chronic Disease Self Management — Who Benefits?” is a special presentation demonstrating how community-based education programs can assist those with long-term health conditions.
The presentation will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Wednesday at Metro Tech, 1900 Springlake Drive. It is free and open to the public.
The guest speaker will be Kate Lorig, professor emeriti at Stanford University School of Medicine and director of the Stanford Patient Education Research Center.
She will discuss how Oklahoma's “Living Longer Living Stronger” program can help those with high blood pressure, arthritis, heart disease, stroke, lung disease and diabetes improve their health and quality of life while lowering medical expenses.
The presentation includes an overall look at the program's effectiveness and its effect on racial and ethnic minorities, the mentally ill and those with low literacy levels. The “Living Longer” program, which takes six weeks, is offered statewide in senior centers, faith-based organizations, health facilities, gyms, school and correctional centers.
Recent attendees have praised the program for helping them be more active and cope with depression and pain, according to a news release.
The presentation will be available for viewing by videoconference at venues across the state. To register to attend or to find a venue near you, call Karla Brown at 271-9444, ext. 56543, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The program is sponsored by the Oklahoma Department of Human Services Aging Services Division, the Oklahoma State Department of Health, Oklahoma Career Technology Centers and the Oklahoma Health Equity Campaign.
Ken Raymond, Staff Writer