The Elderly pp 11-27 | Cite as

Practical Problems

  • W. J. MacLennan
  • A. N. Shepherd
  • I. H. Stevenson
Part of the Treatment in Clinical Medicine book series (TC MEDICINE)


On first meeting an elderly patient, a doctor often is faced with the dilemma of deciding which of the many disorders he identified should be treated. When Wilson et al. (1962) reviewed 200 patients admitted to a geriatric unit they found that each, on average, suffered from six different diseases. The number of these rose with patient age (Fig. 2.1). Disorders most frequently contributing to multiple pathology were cerebrovascular disease, pneumonia, urinary infection, ischaemic or hypertensive heart disease, dementia, chronic bronchitis, cataract, pressure sores, normochromic anaemia, renal failure, cancer, and prostatic enlargement (Fig. 2.2).


Chronic Bronchitis Mental Impairment Remainder Function Hypertensive Heart Disease Prostatic Enlargement 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. J. MacLennan
    • 1
  • A. N. Shepherd
    • 1
  • I. H. Stevenson
    • 2
  1. 1.University Department of MedicineNinewells Hospital and Medical SchoolDundeeScotland
  2. 2.Department of Pharmacology and Clinical PharmacologyNinewells Hospital and Medical SchoolDundeeScotland

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