PAW-fect visitors in the Highlands The Ramsay Way - 2014 | 03 5 Surgery brings quality of life for nonagenarians Hot new wheels for Lawrence Hargrave Private TODAY, THE 80 PLUS AGE GROUP CONTINUES TO BE THE FASTEST GROWING SEGMENT OF THE POPULATION, & INNOVATIVE SURGICAL PROCEDURES NOW PROVIDED AT STRATHFIELD PRIVATE HOSPITAL PROVIDE A QUALITY OF LIFE, WHICH COULD ONLY BE DREAMT OF A FEW DECADES AGO. However, with the new phenomenon of later-life survival, brings the dilemma many patients and doctors face – just how old is too old for surgery? Strathfield Private Cardiothoracic Surgeon Professor Michael Vallely says a recent study involving Strathfield Private patients, printed in the international Heart Lung and Circulation journal, found that both short and longterm outcomes for potentially high-risk, elderly patients were “excellent”. “The number of cardiac surgical patients >80 years has increased 24fold over the last 2 decades,” he says. He says some patients are denied cardiac surgery or not referred for consideration based on their age alone - but that the new research proves age is not a barrier. The study included 117 patients aged 80 or more, who underwent heart surgery at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and Strathfield Private. “Every referral to a unit with an interest in the management of structural heart disease in the elderly, gives older patients the best chance of being offered appropriate intervention,” he says. Olga Salmond, 90 next year, had Anterior Minimally Invasive Surgery (AMIS) on her hip at Strathfield Private in 2014, as well mitral valve heart surgery a few years earlier and post-surgery walks two kilometres a day. Her advice for elderly patients? “Pardon the pun but I would do it again in a heartbeat.” The team at Lawrence Hargrave Private Hospital recently sent their patient transport vehicle off for a complete makeover returning with a hot new look. The van now displays inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation programs offered at Lawrence Hargarve including hydrotherapy, pain management program and Tai Chi and Pilates classes with some bright and fun graphics and the motto “We’ll Get You Moving”. The eye catching van transformation is being noticed in the broader community. YOU WOULDN’T NORMALLY SEE A DOG IN A HOSPITAL, BUT AT SOUTHERN HIGHLANDS PRIVATE HOSPITAL THESE FOUR LEGGED FRIENDS ARE AMONG THEIR DAILY VISITORS. With his long blonde hair and kind manor, Rocky is the centre of attention in the Acacia Unit at Southern Highlands Cancer Centre. The friendly four year old lab is a member of the PAWS Pet Therapy, a visiting dog therapy program which visits hospitals and alike. In the PAWS Pet Therapy group there’s up to 10 different therapy dogs that visit the Acacia Unit patients daily. The therapeutic benefits of animal companions are well known but the greatest benefit to the hospital is the potential to uplift and distract nervous patients. Olga Salmond, 90 next year, is one of the new breed of nonagenarians at Strathfield Private.
The Ramsay Way - Spring 2014
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