Anxiety Disorder in Older Adults
This chapter addresses anxiety disorders in late life, especially generalized anxiety disorder, which is highly prevalent and overloads health services. In addition, anxious patients usually have cognitive and social functioning decline, leading to a poorer quality of life. Despite this, it is a less studied topic than geriatric depression. Neurobiological research shows the involvement of the HPA axis, and basal cortisol levels are higher in those patients. The presentation of the symptoms is usually different in comparison with younger adults, and it is frequently comorbid with other psychiatric and physical diseases, complicating its management. The treatment should involve medicines, such as SSRIs and psychotherapy, especially cognitive behavioral therapy.
KeywordsAnxiety disorders Elderly Epidemiology Neurobiology of anxiety Old age psychiatry
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