Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Anti-Aging Medicine Now Part of the Mainstream

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Anti-Aging Medicine Now Part of the Mainstream

Article excerpt

BLUFFTON, S.C. -- The quest for the fountain of youth, which once led Spanish explorers to the wilds of Florida, now leads to quite a different place -- a small office park among the outlet shops, golf courses and boutiques lining the road to posh Hilton Head Island.

Here at the Hilton Head Longevity Center, as well as a growing number of other centers and medical practices across the country, doctors practicing anti-aging medicine work to slow and even reverse the aging process.

What 15 years ago might have been considered medical sleight-of- hand has become mainstream medicine as doctors use hormone replacement therapy, nutritional supplements, diet and exercise programs to retard the effects of aging. "The focus right now is on improving the quality of life," said Dr. Thomas Newton, co-founder of the Hilton Head center that opened about a year ago and now has about 70 patients. Anti-aging medicine seeks to move life expectancy -- 76 to 79 years for Americans -- toward the limits of the human life span of about 120 years, allowing people to live longer, more active lives. Future medical advances might even increase the life span, Newton said. Donna Powell wasn't necessarily looking to live longer when she arrived at the center. She just wanted to live normally. She had symptoms that included hair loss, dry skin, low energy and cravings for food. A year and a half of tests with regular doctors found nothing. The clinic immediately diagnosed the condition as menopause, though she was just 45 and not having hot flashes. Doctors said she was a 45-year-old woman with a 55-year-old body. A month later, Powell was back to normal on a program of vitamin supplements, diet and exercise, and hormone replacement therapy. "It basically comes down to yourself," she said. "Am I worth this? …

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