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Revista Cubana de Enfermería

Print version ISSN 0864-0319On-line version ISSN 1561-2961


LLANES BETANCOURT, Caridad. Functional evaluation and the fragile elderly. Rev Cubana Enfermer [online]. 2008, vol.24, n.2. ISSN 0864-0319.

The functional evaluation at different ages is the result of the interaction of biological, psychological and social elements, it is probably the most faithful reflect of the integrity of the individual along the aging process. The comprehensive geriatric assessment (CGA) or exhaustive geriatric assessment is "a diagnostic multidimensional and interdisciplinary process designed to identify and quantify the physical, functional, psychical and social problems the elderly may present aimed at developing a treatment scheme and follow-up of such problems, as well as the optimum utilization of resources to face them". Information on this topic was searched for this issue of the journal. It was proved that fragility results from the reduction of the reserve capacity that leads to disability and triggers the institutionalization or death. The main risk factors for fragility would be a compendium of the problems derived from alterations of balance and walking due to multiple disabilities (sensorial systems, muscular response, balance), acute or chronic diseases (known or not), risk factors as regards abuses (lyfe styles, social factors, economic factors), and factors connected with disuse (inactivity, immobility, nutritional deficitis). The fundamental tool for evaluating the elderly's fragility is CGA, and it should be carried out at all the health care levels, not only in admitted patients, but also in the community.

Keywords : Functional evaluation; fragile elderly; aging; geriatrics.

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