Three Things Clinicians Should Know About Disability – by Joel Michael Reynolds, PhD – AMA Journal of Ethics – Dec 2018
The historical relationship between health care professionals and people with disabilities is fraught, a fact all the more troubling in light of the distinctive roles clinicians play in both establishing and responding to that which is considered normal or abnormal by society at large.
I offer an overview of recent disability theory, outline a set of responsibilities clinicians have to disability communities, and provide recommendations for clinicians who hope to justly treat patients with disabilities and improve their care and health outcomes. Continue reading
The effect of pain on major cognitive impairment in older adults – July 10, 2018
- Pain is a common problem, even in this relatively healthy community-dwelling cohort
- High pain levels are associated with increased risk of developing memory impairment
- Pain is not associated with developing attention or executive function impairment [This has not been my experience -zyp]
Older adults frequently report pain; cross-sectional studies have shown that pain is associated with worse cognitive function. However, longitudinal studies are lacking. Continue reading
Suicide attempts by disability benefit claimants double after controversial assessments introduced – by May Bulman, Alina Polianskaya – Dec 2017
Though this study was done in England, it shows how attempts to minimize disability claims due to chronic pain by coercing patients to “perform”, and claiming they are fit to work when they really aren’t, cause even more harm.
According to new analysis of NHS data from surveys taken in 2007 and 2014, nearly half of people surveyed on out-of-work disability benefits said in 2014 that they had attempted to take their own lives. Continue reading
Court Rules Chronic Pain Is A VA Disability – Military.com – Apr 2018 By Jim Absher
A recent ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims may have a major effect on the outcome of many veteran’s disability claims. On April 3, the court ruled that pain, without any underlying disability, may be a valid reason for awarding VA compensation benefits.
This seems like a momentous change, yet I’ve only seen this one announcement buried on a site for military members.
Such a ruling by this huge government agency could affect many other healthcare organizations and be the beginning of a return to reason. Continue reading
What We Lose When We Undertreat Pain | Kate Nicholson | TEDxBoulder – YouTube
I’m not a big fan of getting information from videos, but this one is worth watching and sharing with people who don’t understand how well opioids can work and why we would want to take them.
Kate Nicholson was working as a civil rights attorney for the Justice Department when a surgical error left her unable to sit or stand, largely bedridden, and in severe pain for almost 20 years.
Using opioids as an appropriate pain management tool, she continued to function as a high-level federal prosecutor. Continue reading
The Quiet Attack on the ADA Making Its Way Through Congress – Center for American Progress – Sept 2017 – By Eliza Schultz, Rebecca Cokley, and Rebecca Vallas
a bill making its way through Congress threatens to roll back the civil rights of people with disabilities by exactly 27 years.
The bill, misleadingly titled the ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017, would hack away at the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, the landmark civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability and mandates that people with disabilities have “equal opportunity” to participate in American life. Continue reading
What It Means for Me to Have a ‘Sitting Disability’
This all sounds so familiar, it makes me realize I also have a ‘Sitting Disability” – I just never thought to identify it as such.
I can’t sit.
Well, I can, but not for very long. When I do, it hurts a lot.
There are many medical reasons why a person has difficulty sitting. Mine is because I have a throbbing pain in the low back (lumbago) and shooting pain down my left leg (sciatica). Continue reading
How Social Security Decides If You Can Work or Are Disabled | DisabilitySecrets – accessed 7/31/17
This is a good explanation of how the process works:
If your medical condition doesn’t match one found on the SSA’s List of Impairments, the SSA will evaluate your remaining abilities (called your residual functional capacity, or RFC) to see if you can do your prior job.
If not, the SSA will perform a medical-vocational analysis to determine whether there is other work you can be expected to learn to do. Continue reading
How to Explain Your Pain to a Doctor by Dr. Michael J. Cooney, D.C. on April 15th, 2016
Here are some tips from a doctor about how to describe your pain in terms a doctor can understand best.
Pain symptoms are personal, unique–and subjective. (What Joe describes as “unbearable pain” may be considered “pretty unpleasant pain” to Mike).
Over the years, I developed my own “pain diagnostic” conversation with patients to help my team and I understand what, where, when and how much pain patients are feeling.
I’ve outlined key points below: Continue reading
How To Make A Home Much More Friendly To Seniors Using Wheelchairs Or Walkers | Kaiser Health News – Jan 2017
When Dan Bawden teaches contractors and builders about aging-in-place, he has them get into a wheelchair. See what it’s like to try to do things from this perspective, he tells them.
That’s when previously unappreciated obstacles snap into focus.
About 2 million older adults in the U.S. use wheelchairs, according to the U.S. Census Bureau; another 7 million use canes, crutches or walkers. Twenty years from now, 17 million U.S. households will include at least one mobility-challenged older adult, according to a December report from Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies. Continue reading