Alzheimer’s Disease Planning

Many Americans are diagnosed with an unsuspected serious illness that catches them worried and in deep thoughts about their future and the future of their family. Alzheimer’s disease, a complicated and chronic illness which is suffered by about five million Americans, is one of these serious illnesses.

Alzheimer’s disease, the most common root of dementia in older people, is an irremediable, progressive brain disease which gradually destroys an individual’s memory, thinking capabilities, as well as the ability to perform the simplest daily activities. Once this disease leads to the most severe stage of dementia, it will render a person totally dependent on others even on the most basic tasks.

Because Alzheimer’s disease causes a person to lose his or her ability to think clearly medical and legal experts, therefore, advise those recently diagnosed with it to study and update their financial and health care plans while they still have the ability to make clear and meaningful decisions. These plans usually include the drafting of a living trust, a will and advance instructions that will ensure the carrying out of their health care and financial wishes during the later stages of the disease and, eventually, death.

The legality of documents to be prepared naturally calls for the assistance of a knowledgeable lawyer who is familiar with the laws of the state where the patient resides. Besides making sure that all plans are made in compliance with the state’s laws, your lawyer, as pointed out on the website of Peck Ritchey, LLC, should also help the patient: identify and complete all necessary legal documents in the drafting or updating of the will, trust or deed; make plans for medical and treatment choices; specify how he/she wishes his/her plans for finances and property carried out; preserve his/her assets while caring for a loved one; be eligible for government aid; and, assign the right person who will make decisions on his/her behalf when he/she no longer can.

Being diagnosed with an Alzheimer’s disease is emotionally wrenching, but so will leaving your loved ones with a bleak future. This is why a patient diagnosed with Alzheimer’s will need all the medical and legal assistance that he/she needs to make sure that everything will be in place when the disease casts its full effects or takes his/her life eventually. Though the days ahead may be filled with worry and/or fear, knowing that the financial future of your loved ones will be taken care of, especially when you can no longer be with them, would, (hopefully) somehow, lessen any worry in your and their lives.

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Texas’s Concealed Carry Law

Texas is one of the most carefree states when it comes to gun possession. Anyone who is of legal age can buy and carry a concealed weapon, provided they apply for the necessary papers. The Texas state constitution Article 1 Section 23 protects its citizens’ right to bear arms, although the website of Mark Lassiter, Attorney at Law says this has its limitations. According to Texas Stat. & Code Ann. § 46.02., if you are planning to carry a concealed weapon (or have it near your body or vehicle), you need to have a concealed carry permit.

Certain individuals are prohibited to carry weapons in Texas, whether open or concealed. Among them are those not of legal age (anyone younger than 21 years old), those who have been convicted of a felony offense of have been charged within that past 5 years with anything that is included in the listed misdemeanors, any fugitives from justice or chemically-dependent people, those who are late in paying their state tax payments, and many others. For a full list, it is better to refer to the Texas Pen. Code § 411.172.

Despite the lenient gun laws in Texas, you may still need the help of a Dallas criminal defense lawyer once you have been caught by the police for openly carrying a firearm, as stated in the Texas Pen. Code § 46.035. Furthermore, Texas Pen. Code § 46.03. states that you are not allowed to carry a concealed firearm unless you are within your own premises, you vehicle, or watercraft. These rules, however, may not apply to those who are in active military duty, prison guards, or officers of the court who are on official duties.

Penalties regarding gun carrying violations can differ; they can include fines reaching to $2,500 and imprisonment of up to a year for some misdemeanor violations. Penalties for felonies can include fines of up to $10,000 with between 2 and 10 years of prison time. Because of such harsh penalties, Mark Lassiter Law encourages those who have been charged to consult a Dallas criminal defense lawyer, whether you simply have questions regarding the charges or if you need legal representation in court.

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Personal Injury: Whiplash

There are different kinds of injuries that individuals, who get involved in car accidents, may sustain. These can range from the least minor bruises to the more serious bone fracture, neck and spinal cord injury, traumatic head injury, injury to the face, internal injuries, paralysis, and whiplash, which the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) believes may be the most common car crash injury sustained by victims.

Whiplash is characterized by an abrupt, violent blow to one’s head, causing it to jolt back and forth. It can damage muscles, ligaments, tendons and other soft tissues in the neck area. Though a car accident may be its usual cause, a whiplash can also result from a fall, an injury sustained in sports, or an assault. When sustained through a motor vehicle accident, it would be due to the car being hit hard from behind or at the side, causing the neck to jerk with force to one side and then back.

One major drawback concerning whiplash injuries is that these are often neither easily nor immediately noticeable until some (or many) hours after the accident. X-rays can prove useless too as the injury does not necessarily show fractured bones on the neck. There are symptoms, though, that may hint its existence, like a sense of needles and pins in the arms, dizziness, lack of energy, nausea, neck swelling, back pain, pain on the shoulder and arms, headaches blurred vision, difficulty swallowing, and muscle spasms.

Though being rear-ended by an speeding vehicle can definitely result to a serious whiplash injury, it can be a surprise for many to know that most whiplash injuries are caused by vehicles running only between five and ten miles per hour. The best advice given to all drivers to avoid this type of injury despite an accident is by making sure that one is properly restrained, which means making sure that one is wearing or is secured by a seatbelt.

Rear-ending another vehicle can be due either to tailgating or inattentive/distracted driving. The driver at fault will surely need to comply with the stipulations of the law and compensate his/her victim for the damages the victim will suffer from (due to the injury).

On the part of the victim, it will be very wise to seek the services of a highly-competent personal injury lawyer, who will explain to him/her the best legal options that may enable him/her to receive compensation from the liable party – a right of the victim that the law upholds.

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Medical Devices – Morcellators

The National Institutes of Health says one in every three American women will undergo a hysterectomy.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, after Caesarian section, which is the number one surgical procedure that doctors perform on women in the US, hysterectomy comes next. Doctors consider hysterectomy, a surgical procedure aimed at removing a woman’s uterus, safe and very effective in eliminating or reducing uncontrollable vaginal bleeding and chronic pelvic pain, and in treating certain types of infections and cancer (such as cancer of the uterus, ovarian cancer or cervical cancer). Furthermore, hysterectomy is performed due to various needs and reasons, including

  • Removal of (uterine) fibroids, which are benign tumors that develop in the uterus
  • Treatment of:
    • Pelvic inflammatory disease (an infection of the female reproductive organs)
    • adenomyosis (a condition wherein the uterus’ inner linings protrudes through the muscle wall of the uterus)
    • uterine prolapse (a condition in which the uterus, or womb, slips out of the cervix, dropping halfway into the vagina (or birth canal)
    • endometriosis (a source of pain and bleeding due to the growth of the inner lining of the uterus in the abdomen)

There are different ways of removing or treating the uterus, through: Abdominal Hysterectomy (where a vertical or horizontal cut is made in the abdomen); Laparoscopic Hysterectomy (multiple minimal incisions are made, one for the laparoscope, or small camera, to see inside the body as the uterus is cut and removed in small pieces); Vaginal Hysterectomy (wherein a cut is made inside the vagina instead of in the abdomen); and, Laparoscopically Assisted Vaginal Hysterectomy or LAVH (a procedure that uses a laparoscope to guide the removal of the uterus, ovaries and/or fallopian tubes through the birth canal.

In laparoscopic surgeries an instrument, called a morcellator, is used to mince large masses of tissues (can be the uterus or uterine fibroids) for easy extraction. A morcellator is usually used in supracervical hysterectomy, which leaves the cervix untouched. When used in hysterectomy or myomectomy (removal of uterine fibroid), however, a morcellator can cause the spreading of uterine sarcoma, a cancerous tissue that is very hard to detect. Due to this risk, the US Food and Drug Administration issued a safety alert that discourages the use of morcellators in the said surgical procedures.

Despite the fact that hysterectomy and myomectomy, wherein morcellators are used, are much faster and safer to perform, require shorter recovery time and greatly reduce any possibility of infection compared to vaginal or abdominal hysterectomy and myomectomy, these do not outweigh the harm (cancer) that patients can be made to suffer from.

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Adolescence and Depression

Researchers and physicians recommend that children and adolescents stay under close watch when they are taking prescription medication. Since the developing brain makes neural connections at an accelerated rate, compared to the adult brain, the effects of medication can be extremely defining to continued brain development. Though a healthy majority of young people do not experience overwhelming symptoms of depression, some young people find prescription antidepressants extremely helpful in allowing them to be productive, focused, and regain their vitality.

Adolescents are particularly vulnerable to situational depression, like the after effects of divorcing parents, a sudden death, or complications from moving away from their original home. In addition to being vulnerable to situational changes, adolescents also deal with extreme pressures within competitive academic avenues, competitive friend groups, and shifting hormone levels. Many adolescents that are in need of therapeutic assistance for depression or anxiety are extremely hesitant to be vulnerable in asking for help.

Many young people affected by depression or anxiety might not even be aware that their condition is abnormal, accepting sadness as a normal state of being. Prescription antidepressants, like Lexapro, Zoloft, and Prozac, coupled with psychiatric therapy, have proven to be a very effective form of treatment for depression and anxiety. Urges to self-harm and thoughts of suicide are hosted most commonly in the thoughts of younger people, so doctors are warned to pay extra attention to their younger patients on antidepressants. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) administered black box warnings for all antidepressants. Black box warnings are the strongest possible issuing that the FDA can administer. Boxed warnings indicate that the prescription may carry a significant level of risk to patients. Specifically, warnings for antidepressants emphasize the possible risks for birth defects to developing fetuses as well as increased thoughts of suicide.

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