Anti-Aging Age Management Medicine
the Future of Health and Wellness
Anti-Aging Medicine / Age Management Medicine. What is it? Is it real? Are there real controversies here? In a word, yes. Can it be fulfilled in today’s guideline, task force, economic environment?
We are poised at a very important juncture. Anti-aging medicine offers promise of a goal oriented path to optimal health and well being. Or we can pursue restrictive policy driven, algorithms of cookbook medicine.
What needs to change? What gives it the stamp of approval? Is it science or politics? As the great philosopher Schopenhauer said:
“All truth passes through three stages. First it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.”
There is a plethora of terms that have been spun off to better describe this new field. Longevity Medicine, Age Management Medicine, functional medicine, integrative medicine. These are all descriptions in pursuit of a new paradigm.
All medicine has from the beginning, most notably Hippocrates, been an effort to mitigate illness and suffering with the implicit goal of increasing life span. One yardstick could simply be life span or longevity. But we are more interested in quality of life. And here is the key. Increasing HealthSpan. It is about “squaring the curve” — living longer in a healthy, vibrant, vigorous, independent, and happy state of health and well being.
The paradigm shift is tectonic. We don’t have a health care system. We have a disease management system. All ICD-9 (now ICD-10) codes are a codification of disease. If you feel weak, fatigued or just “not right” you may not be suffering from a disease. You can have a battery of tests and nothing will “show positive” for a disease. You have a dysfunction. Pre-menopause is not really a disease. Yet it lasts for upwards of 4-5 years and can be seriously disabling. A dysfunction. Andropause is not even widely recognized as such. It is also a dysfunction that men suffer later than menopause. There is no formal ICD-10 code for andropause — just hypogonadism.
The wonderful medicine of the last 50 years has been disease-based , pathology-oriented with the goal of finding the right drug to cure or mitigate your disease. But there is a rapidly growing residua of conditions and patients who are not right, dysfunctional, that do not respond to the conventional or traditional approach.
Anti-Aging Age Management Medicine is functional. It is integrative — using techniques borrowed from conventional medicine augmented with those from alternative medicine. It is the use of a larger “tool box.” Anti-Aging Medicine is goal oriented. It is not simply a categorization or deft use of codes and nomenclature for the purpose of insurance reimbursement. What is your goal? What are trying to achieve? This can be both baffling and then liberating when first proposed to you.
All cars age. But a Cord, a Duisenberg, a Corvette, a Jag XKE, even a Model A can be restored to its former newness and elan. Cars can be renovated. Can we?
“A man is as old as his arteries,” said Sir Thomas Sydenham in the late 17th century.
If so, a 60 year old man with a blood pressure reverting back to 110/70 could be said to have achieved some degree of age regression.
Thus the philosophy and approach to Anti-Aging Machine. It will become the Future Shock of medicine every bit as first described in the wonderful book called Age Wave by Ken Dychtwald. The paradigm shift.
What can you do today? This has been mentioned in past columns.
- Graded and regular physical exercise.
- Eating more sensibly — more protein and less carbohydrates. The Paleo diet. The Caveman diet. Modified Atkins diet.
- Get more and better quality sleep. Sleep is rejuvenating.
- Use cell phones less because of the EMF and RF.
- Use microwaves less often because of the mallard effect on your food.
- Learn about better supplementation of your food.
- Seek out information about sensible, physiologic and bioidentical use of hormone replacement therapy.
Finding a competent Anti-Aging physician is not easy. There are really only a few stars in the country. There are many more that are beginning to master the art and science. We are establishing the acceptance, and legitimacy” of the field. This will be a consumer driven effort. You.
Talk to your friends, colleagues, and open-minded physicians. We need a serious re evaluation of our national healthcare goals. Not platitudes, shell games and political meanderings.
Pledge yourself to a vigorous, optimally healthy and happy life. Do something good for someone you love. You owe it to yourself, your loved ones and your work environment.
Philip Lee Miller, MD
Founder, California Age Management Institute [formerly Los Gatos Longevity Institute
Author, the Life Extension Revolution
Adapted from the original publication in the Affluent newspaper