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On Sabbatical

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Gerontology in the News

On this page we will examine news from the fields of gerontology (knowledge of the process of aging) and geriatric (medical term for "old-age-related") medicine.  Gerontologists are a multidisciplinary group composed of psychologists, physiologists, biologists, cell biologists, molecular geneticists, social workers, political scientists, architects, urban planners, public administrators, attorneys, sociologists, medical anthropologists, physicians, nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, and politicians.   Wherever gerontologists gather, there are likely to be some interesting discussions. 

Nursing Home Ratings Listed

The chance of any given person being in a nursing home for any part of his or her life is less than 40% (and even then, it isn't always for the remainder of your life) but if you, or a family member, are in that 40%, the need for consumer information can be quite pressing.  Here are some links to resources focusing on violations: 

Government Committee on Reform Report on  Nursing Home Conditions in the San Francisco Bay Area 

 National Comparison of Medicare Certified Nursing Homes

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Isn't it all in the head?  Male sexual arousal seems like is a matter of will and hydraulics.  It was commonly assumed by many men that as their overall vigor declined, so too did the pump powering their passion.   Scientifically, there is a very different explanation to how the penis becomes erect.  Less important than "the power of the man behind the hose" is the ability of certain arterioles in the penis to relax, and by doing so, pinch of the venous return of the blood from the penis to the rest of the body.  The mechanism(s) of vascular relaxation seem to decline as a whole over the lifespan so it seemed as if the circulation in the penis was just part of a bigger, more complex phenomenon related to   hypertension. Sure enough,  Viagra!

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[This page last edited on 06/22/07.]

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On Sabbatical!

When my office lease expired at the end of 2004, I decided to turn it into a "sabbatical" from my private practice. Many years ago, in my grandfather's 89th year of life, he told me, "John, it is important to smell the roses while you can still smell them." His life gave living a very good reputation. It is also true that the pursuit of that philosophy required my grandfather to to re-open his assay office/ore market in Wickenburg, Arizona as a 75-year-old because he had run a little short of retirement money. Thus, if blessed with his luck and health, I'll be back.. --jjh

Copyright 1998-2007  John J. Herr, Ph.D.                                   Please send comments to