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© Borgis - Postępy Nauk Medycznych 8/2011, s. 706
Prof. nadzw. dr hab. med. Tadeusz Parnowski
Recently in polish literature repeatedly one may find articles on health problems in elderly.
Articles in that issue of PostępyNaukMedycznych have three aims: to show diversity of medical problems in old age, nearness of physical and mental conditions, and special, rarely described problems as benzodiazepine dependency and alcohol abuse.
Diseases appearing in old population differ in clinical characteristics from middle age illnesses.There are atypical clinical pictures, chronic course, drug resistance and more unwanted effects. As a result, these factors create new disease with unknown pathogenesis and symptomatology.
The most frequent mental disturbances are presented as: delirium, depression and cognitive impairment. It might be interested for general practitioners articles about principles of pharmacotherapy and compliance in old age, but also mental status after cardiac surgery or infective endocarditis. Additionally there are two interesting articles presenting benzodiazepine dependence and alcohol abuse. Summing up this area, it should be emphasized that benzodiazepine dependency is present in even 60% of population, and its detoxification is no more problematic than in middle age. Conclusion, coming from experiences of Prophylaxis and Treatment Dependency Team is, that we profit by detoxification e from benzodiazepines. Although prevalence of alcohol abuse in elderly is difficult to assess, we can suspect even several percent of population. What is important, is age of drinking onset, which may influence drug pharmacokinetics .The last problem presented in this issue of “Postępy Nauk Medycznych” is very discussed recently, but it does not exist in international classification yet. These clinical syndromes: mild cognitive impairment and vascular depression create a lot of diagnostic and therapeutic challenges. We present current knowledge regarding both problems.
Prof. nadzw. dr hab. med. Tadeusz Parnowski
Postępy Nauk Medycznych 8/2011
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