old age

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old age:

see geriatricsgeriatrics
, the branch of medicine concerned with conditions and diseases of the aged. Many disabilities in old age are caused by or related to the deterioration of the circulatory system (see arteriosclerosis), e.g.
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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/

old age

the last part of the individual LIFE COURSE, associated with declining faculties, low social worth and detachment from previous social commitments. It is a social construct rather than a biological stage, since its onset and significance vary historically and culturally. See also AGEING, GERONTOLOGY.
Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Old Age


the period of life that inevitably sets in after middle age and is characterized by significant metabolic, structural, and functional changes in organs and systems that limit the adaptability of the body. Old age is a result of the dynamic process of aging. According to one system of age classification, 75–90 years of age is considered old age, and over 90, advanced old age.

An individual’s physical appearance, work capacity, and mental abilities change with old age, as does the course of many diseases. The skin becomes thinner and less elastic, and wrinkles and pigment spots appear. The hair turns gray and falls out. Visual acuity decreases, and lenticular opacity develops, often resulting in the formation of cataracts. An individual may grow shorter, and curvature of the spine is common. Joint mobility is limited, and bones become fragile and lose calcium. Mental performance declines, and a person becomes more easily fatigued, less able to recall recent events, and subject to sleep disturbances.

Because of their adaptive mechanisms, some old people can maintain a high level of intellectual activity for a long time and remain alert and creative. With old age, organs and tissues are less influenced by neural factors but are more sensitive to humoral influences. Age-related changes in the vascular wall and in protein and lipid metabolism contribute to the progression of atherosclerosis. Changes in digestion may cause vitamin deficiency. The rate of aging and extent of changes in organs and tissues vary with each individual. (For changes that occur with aging on the cellular level and in functional systems see.)


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

old age

[′ōld ′āj]
The last stage of the erosion cycle in the development of the topography of a region in which erosion has reduced the surface almost to base level and the land forms are marked by simplicity of form and subdued relief. Also known as topographic old age.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
The funding through these schemes can be ring fenced, meaning that there is continual funding for local groups aiding elderly people."
The NutureWatch is paired with a smartphone to keep elderly people connected and provide a safety net that allows constant monitoring and gives them greater independence -- without the expense or intrusion of a 24/7 caregiver.
There is a particular problem to keep up the number of care workers with the increase in the number of elderly people. At the same time, it is also necessary to reduce the work burden of care workers.
In our society, neurological and psychological issues of elderly people are considered as consequence of growing age and they have to live their remaining life with these issues although they can be prevented and treated as well.
He unveiled plans to assess the implementation of national strategy for elderly people and expand the day care clubs to help this category of people enjoy a healthy environment and integrate into society.
In fact, it occurs in approximately 50% of elderly people in specialized care homes and double that number in elderly people in the community (Boyington et al., 2007).
A 12?YEAR?OLD girl was so moved by the John Lewis "Man on the Moon" Christmas advert she started a campaign to collect gifts for lonely elderly people. Maddy Fitzgerald-Wilkins, from Griffithstown, Pontypool, Torfaen, was so upset after watching the ad she told her mother Leanne she had to do something to help local elderly people at Christmas.
The Sultanate's care programs for the elderly peoples are in line with the international trends which prefer to provide the care for the elderly people in their environment and within their families to reduce as much as possible the need for providing the care at the care centers.
Selfish families are leaving elderly people vulnerable to acts of crime by neglecting them, police have claimed.
Upon her arrival here on Sunday, Minister Al-Sabeeh told KUNA that her visit to Manama aims to exchange expertise and get acquainted with the Bahraini experiment in caring for elderly people in collaboration with non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
poor I HAVE every sympathy with Disgusted of Tamworth who wrote about the care of elderly people in hospital.

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