Buck O’Neil is the oldest living former Negro League player. Buck’s 94 years old and recently completed a trip to the Baseball Hall of Fame for the induction ceremonies. When he returned home to Kansas City, Missouri he was admitted to the hospital suffering from fatigue.
Putting aside the slap in the face the Baseball Hall of Fame did to him by not inducting him, but asking him to talk, let’s focus on medical fatigue and how to treat fatigue.
On Buck O’Neal’s condition, Bob Kendrick, a friend and marketing director for the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, said:
Mostly the doctors just wanted to be extra cautious with him. They just wanted to slow him down a little. He’s getting kind of antsy,” Kendrick said with a laugh. “He’s ready for them to turn him loose. But with a 94-year-old, you want to err on the side of overcaution.
Fatigue is a general condition that affects people of all ages, in Buck’s situation his older age is affecting his general health.
What is fatigue? There are two types of fatigue that the medical community is concerned with. Central fatigue affects motor skills of someone and peripheral fatigue concerns the inability to do physical work or lethargy. More than likely Buck is suffering from central fatigue, but this is just a guess, as his condition hasn’t been detailed.
What causes fatigue? There are a wide range of causes from lack of sleep, over work, jet lag, stress, vitamin deficiency or simple boredom. The concern with fatigue is if it become chronic, more than two months. That could be a systemic issue with a greater underlying cause.
How do you know you’re suffering from fatigue? You’re going to feel lethargic and have an inability to easily do tasks that you were able to do. You might also feel tired or worn out. You need to seek medical attention when normal sleep and eating fail to change your lethargic feelings.
How do you treat fatigue? Medically fatigue is a tough thing to handle. In most cases you’ll be prescribed a sedative or sleep medicine to ensure that you settle down and sleep well. Your nutrition will be monitored and dietary changes might be suggested.
The important thing when treating fatigue is to track how you’re feeling throughout the treatment process.