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Do Farmers Have a Higher Chance of Getting Dementia?

Do Farmers Have a Higher Chance of Getting Dementia?

With traits such as hearing loss, depression and social isolation seen in both agriculture workers and those who suffer with dementia, University of Iowa College of Public Health assistant professor, Kanika Arora sought to determine if there was a connection.

In the first of its kind to the U.S. study, researchers used previous data from the Health and Retirement Study to discover that agriculture workers scored lower on tests related to memory, attention, and processing speed, according to CBS 2 Iowa’s recent article entitled “Recent study shows agriculture workers have a greater chance of having dementia.”

The Iowa study shows that agricultural workers have lower resistance against the effects of dementia, compared to people in professional or technical jobs. Although the onset of the disease may be delayed due to higher resistance to damage to the brain among professional and technical workers, the rate of decline may be faster due to the greater accumulation of brain pathology, Arora explained.

The University of Michigan Health and Retirement Study is a longitudinal panel study that surveys a representative sample of approximately 20,000 people in America, supported by the National Institute on Aging and the Social Security Administration.

With hundreds of farmers calling Iowa home, and many working past the age of standard retirement, it raised concerns for a possible delay in a dementia diagnosis.

“As far as Iowans are concerned, this is important for two reasons. How to remain productive on the farm and how to maintain safety given memory loss, language problems and other unpredictable behaviors that come with dementia,” said Arora.

Researchers cannot directly examine the role of pesticide exposure to dementia, but previous studies on the amount of exposure to agricultural workers show the same test scores. Arora hopes future research is done on this connection.

The results of the study, recently published in the peer-reviewed Journal Gerontology: Social Sciences, can help researchers develop effective interventions to protect older farmers.

The researchers could not attribute the association to hearing impairment or depression—factors independently linked to both agriculture and dementia—the impact of pesticide exposure among agricultural workers may warrant further study, they said.

Reference: CBS 2 Iowa (Jan. 31, 2021) “Recent study shows agriculture workers have a greater chance of having dementia”

Read more related articles at:

Rural dementia: We need to talk

Study shows working in agriculture poses higher risk of developing dementia

Also, read one of our previous Blogs at:

What Do Farmers Need to Create an Estate Plan?

Click here to check out our On Demand Video about Estate Planning.

‘Real Housewives’ Ex under Temporary Conservatorship

‘Real Housewives’ Ex under Temporary Conservatorship

Tom Girardi’s brother, Robert, has been named to take care of his daily and personal activities. The news comes a month after Robert filed a petition to be in control of Tom’s estate and ongoing legal battles.

A conservatorship is when a judge appoints someone to manage an incapacitated person’s financial and personal affairs. The conservator’s duties include overseeing finances, establishing and monitoring the physical care of the ward and managing living arrangements.

Screen Rant’s article entitled “RHOBH: Erika’s Ex Tom Girardi Now Under Temporary Conservatorship Due to Illness” reports that Tom and Erika have been entangled in some legal drama since she filed for divorce in November of last year.

Despite the May-December romance (more than 30 years’ difference), they always appeared to be happy together. However, as they battle in divorce, their relationship has turned ugly. Tom refused to pay spousal support, but he has her involved in another legal issue: the couple is being sued by Tom’s former clients for embezzling over $2 million. The plaintiffs say that Tom and Erika stole the money to maintain their lavish lifestyle.

According to Us Weekly, the 81-year-old’s attorney Rudy Cosio said that Tom wouldn’t be able to attend the hearing because he suffered a medical emergency over the weekend. His brother filed a petition in January to control Tom’s estate and legal battle because he’s not currently well enough to handle this on his own. The petition was approved by the judge. Robert was given temporary conservatorship of his brother’s estate, as well as his daily activities and personal matters until the end of March. Another hearing is set for mid-March when the judge will decide whether to grant Robert’s other requests. These include granting him approval to place Tom in facility that treats patients with neurocognitive disorders like dementia.

Robert’s attorney released a statement to Us Weekly on the conservatorship and its urgent nature.

“There was an urgent need for Bob Girardi to have the power to engage counsel in the bankruptcy proceeding on his brother’s behalf, and Tom’s court-appointed counsel clearly agreed, as did the court today,” the statement read.

According to court filings, Robert admitted Tom’s health has been declining since Erika filed for divorce and the embezzlement lawsuit last year. Tom is currently unable to understand the ramifications of the bankruptcy filings pending against him and needs Robert to help him.

In December, it was reported that Tom was secretly hospitalized due to a serious illness. While Tom’s illness is not yet known, many are worried about his mental capabilities.

Reference: Screen Rant (Feb. 2, 2021) “RHOBH: Erika’s Ex Tom Girardi Now Under Temporary Conservatorship Due To Illness”

Read more related articles at:

Erika Jayne’s Husband Tom Girardi Placed Under Temporary Conservatorship Amid Divorce

RHOBH star Erika Jayne’s ex Tom’s brother granted conservatorship over 81-year-old lawyer after ‘medical emergency’

Also, read one of our previous Blogs at:

What Is a Conservatorship?

Click here to check out our On Demand Video about Estate Planning.


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