Articles written by Richard Holm Md

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  • A woman experiences life with color

    Richard Holm MD, The Prairie Doc|May 6, 2020

    Mrs. R was a character. Her natural red hair had changed to gray years earlier, but thanks to the magic of her hairdresser, her hair was again flashy red, and she had a personality to match. She was a feisty, fun and full-blooded woman full of zest and pizzazz. She made me smile whenever I made rounds at the nursing home. Through the years, Alzheimer’s disease took its toll on her memory, but her spirit, brightness and spark didn’t seem to fade much. Even near the end, as the family stopped the hair coloring, she gave me a charge of energy and...

  • The Prairie Doc: Aging is a mixed bag

    Richard Holm MD, The Prairie Doc|Apr 8, 2020

    During my lifelong practice of geriatrics, I observed many people reaching the end of their lives. Truth is, what I’ve seen is a mixed picture. The two patient stories I describe here are really a blend of hundreds of experiences. Ms. A is in her late 80s, walks two miles every day, mostly outside but inside a wellness center when sidewalks are icy. She eats a balanced light diet and is connected to many friends. Ms. A is spiritually connected, and life has been and continues to be meaningful to her. Ms. B is also in her late 80s, has never b...

  • Wrage no longer football coach

    Richard Holm MD|Jan 15, 2020

    Marty Wrage is no longer the head football coach for Green River High School. A press release issued by Athletics Director Tony Beardsley announced Wrage would not be returning to the role in 2020. Wrage still is an assistant coach for the high school’s boys basketball team and he continues to teach physical education at the school. The release does not state if Wrage will continue working as a teacher for the district next year or if he will leave. According to the release, the district will search for a new head football coach later this m...

  • Shed the fear of cancer treatment

    Richard Holm MD, The Prairie Doc|Jan 8, 2020

    Mrs. B came into the emergency room one night, years ago, with some stress related issue. After taking her history, I began to suspect there was something else bothering her. As I was beginning her physical exam she blurted out, “I know there is a breast mass but you’re not going to send me to any breast cancer doctor!” She had already decided to avoid standard treatment and her next comment explained why, “My aunt suffered because of awful unnecessary surgery and chemotherapy,” she said. I sensed there was no changing her mind and that mean...

  • 'Use it or lose it'

    Richard Holm MD, Guest column|Nov 13, 2019

    If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it. I bet I’ve heard and repeated this age-old aphorism a million times. But can it be over-used? The adage about using it certainly fits when trying to enhance wellness for all sorts of medical systems: working the brain with puzzles and conversation helps ward off memory loss; walking fast enough to cause one to huff and puff, keeps the heart and lungs strong; regular sexual activity helps prevent impotence; filling the gut with a high fiber diet keeps the bowels in shape and makes you a regular sort-...