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Oxford Textbook of Geriatric Medicine (3 edn)

Ammon M. Fager

and Harvey Jay Cohen


Anaemia is an important problem in the older population. As it is usually mild and insidious in onset, the symptoms of anemia are often overlooked by older adults who attribute their symptoms to an inevitable consequence of ageing while clinicians may ignore mild anaemia in favour of focusing on more prominent comorbidities. However, anaemia in older adults is associated with significant mortality and decreased quality of life due to functional decline. As our understanding of anaemia in elderly people on a biological and clinical level increases, our ability to impact the functional deficits associated with it will improve. However, quality clinical trial evidence on the impact of anaemia and its treatment on crucial outcomes in older patients is currently lacking. The completion of such trials will be critical to assure the safety and efficacy of future interventions designed to improve the treatment and quality of life for older adults.

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