Geriatrics

Chapter

Abstract

THE CONCEPT OF FRAILTY—frailty is a “weakened” or “precarious” state resulting in heightened susceptibility to stressors. While no standard definition for frailty exists, it is associated with (1) limited function, (2) multiple medical conditions, and (3) one of the geriatric syndromes (dementia, delirium, depression, falls ≥1 per month, osteoporosis, failure to thrive, and urinary incontinence). Frailty predisposes patients to functional and cognitive decline, particularly in the presence of precipitants/stressors. While age can be a factor in choosing treatments due to altered pharmacokinetics, frailty is a more important treatment-modifying factor. In general, less aggressive (and sometimes more palliative) treatments are offered to frail patients. Clinical outcomes for frail seniors can be improved with various interventions, such as comprehensive geriatric assessment and exercise programs

Keywords

Meningitis Haloperidol Hypothyroidism Cimetidine Encephalitis 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer CenterHoustonUSA

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