What are some common concerns with geriatric patients?

  1. I am doing some research and wondered what the most common concerns are when dealing with geriatric patients? Illnesses, complaints, etc. I know Alzheimer's and psychiatric problems would be a given, but what else is common? TIA.......
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  2. 19 Comments

  3. by   SCRN1
    Falls, causing fractured hips is a main one I see. Another is confusion. I've also known lots who are on fixed incomes skipping doses on their meds "to make them last longer" which leads to problems with their diabetes or heart problems. Incontinence, arthritis, hearing/vision problems...the list goes on. Then again, I've seen some well into their 70s & 80s who are just as physically & mentally fit as someone in their 40s.
  4. by   nursecrickett
    I know this is off topic here, but I can't post where I want to....anyone else having this problem>????

    Thanks!
  5. by   leslie :-D
    kimmy,

    are you talking about in a long term care facility or elderly living at home?
  6. by   husker-nurse
    One of the biggest problems, besides falls and patients tearing out invasive lines, is LONLINESS, at least in the hospital setting where I work med-surg. Patients often feel abandoned, and, if they are mentally compromised, often panic because they have no idea where they are! Our staffing guidelines don't allow us to spend any more time with these patients, so often they wind up in retraints, which is very sad, and compounds the problem.
  7. by   Energizer Bunny
    Quote from earle58
    kimmy,

    are you talking about in a long term care facility or elderly living at home?
    Both, really. I'm looking for resources on the net too if you have any. I guess what I want to find out is if there are any specific illnesses, etc. that are mostly found in this population and not in the younger ones. KWIM?
  8. by   Love-A-Nurse
    they still want to be as independent as they can.
  9. by   suzanne4
    Alzheimer's; if they have had diabetes for a long time and their sugars were all over the place, then definitely diabetic retinopathy as well as neuropathy;
    claudication of the lower extremities; congestive heart failure can become more pronounced, heart valve problems requiring a new valve be placed, carotid artery problems that can lead to a stroke if not corrected (procedure done is called a carotid endarterectomy); more common to get bowel obstructions; atherosclerosis.......and the list could go on and on...

    Hope that this helps.................
  10. by   Energizer Bunny
    It's a good start, Suzanne....thanks!
  11. by   mandykal
    Lets not forget skin tears & pressure ulcers
  12. by   leslie :-D
    kimmy,

    although i agree with suzanne, that list is a bit too comprehensive for me.
    elderly= arthritic/pain/impaired mobility/risk for falls. dementia often confused w/depression leading to self care deficit. decreased appetite/thirst=altered nutrition; dehydration/risk for impaired skin integrity/altered lytes all leading to a sequela of pathologies...all systems are slowed down, each having their own set of implication.

    why do you ask?
  13. by   Energizer Bunny
    THanks Leslie....I have a group online set up for my class and am collecting links for all different areas...I know our first clinical is going to be in a LTC setting so I wanted to thorougly explore this area and get as much information as possible! Make sense?

    Thanks, hun.
  14. by   leslie :-D
    Quote from CNM2B
    THanks Leslie....I have a group online set up for my class and am collecting links for all different areas...I know our first clinical is going to be in a LTC setting so I wanted to thorougly explore this area and get as much information as possible! Make sense?

    Thanks, hun.
    well kimmy, the most priceless gift you can give them is your honor and dignity. our society is so focused on youth and its' so called advantages where our frail elderly have been pushed aside, demoralized and devalued. so whatever happens in your clinical setting with them, treat them like the valued senior members of our society that they are. too many ltc facilities treat them like little children and it is a slap in the face to them and an insult to nurses who treat them as such. God willing, we will be in their shoes some day.

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