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Late adulthood years after 65. Late adulthood can be divided into: Young old 65 – 74 years Middle old 75 – 84 years Old old over 85 years Geriatrics: is the term for medical speciality that addresses the diagnosis and treatment of the physical problems of elderly person

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Late adulthood years after 65

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Late adulthood years after 65

Late adulthoodyears after 65

Late adulthood years after 65

  • Late adulthood can be divided into:

    • Young old 65 – 74 years

    • Middle old 75 – 84 years

    • Old old over 85 years

  • Geriatrics: is the term for medical speciality that addresses the diagnosis and treatment of the physical problems of elderly person

  • Gerontology: is a science that study all aspects of the aging process including biologic, psychologic and sociologic factors

Biologic theories of aging

Biologic theories of aging

  • Wear and tear theories:

    • Dr. August Weismann, a German biologist, first introduced this theory in 1882.

    • He believed that the body and its cells were damaged by overuse and abuse.

    • The organs, liver, stomach, kidneys, skin and so on are worn down by toxins in our diet and in the environment; by the excessive consumption of fat, sugar, caffeine, alcohol and nicotine; by the ultra-violet rays of the sun and by the many other physical and emotional stresses to which we subject our bodies.

Biologic theories of aging1

Biologic theories of aging

  • Wear and tear is not confined to our organs, however; it also takes place on the cellular level.

  • When we are young the body's own maintenance and repair systems keep compensating for the effects of both normal and excessive wear and tear

  • With age the body loses its ability to repair damage caused by diet, environmental toxins, bacteria or a virus

Biologic theories of aging2

Biologic theories of aging

  • The Neuroendocrine Theory

    • Proposes that changes in hormone production result in organism’s decline

    • When we are young, our hormones work together to regulate many bodily functions, including our responses to heat and cold, our life experiences and our sexual activity

    • Hormones are vital for repairing and regulating our bodily functions, and when aging causes a drop in hormone production, it causes a decline in our body's ability to repair and regulate itself

Late adulthood years after 65

  • The Genetic Control Theory :

    • We are born with a unique genetic code, a predetermined tendency to certain types of physical and mental functioning, and that genetic inheritance has a great deal to say about how quickly we age and how long we live

  • Cross – linking theory:

    • Proposes that chemical reactions create strong bonds between proteins these bonds cause loss of elasticity, stiffness and loss of function

Late adulthood years after 65

  • Autoimmune Theory

    • Proposes that immune system becomes less effective that incubated viruses in the body damage the body organs.

    • Also a reduction in immune function will increase autoimmune responses causing the body to produce antibodies that attack itself

Integumentary system

Integumentary system

  • Skin:

    • dry, fragile and pale

    • Wrinkling and sagging in skin, eyelids, ear lobs, breast due to decrease elasticity and subcutaneous fat

    • Appearance of Lentigo Senilis(brown age spots) due to clustering of melanocytes (pigment cells)

    • Women may start to have facial hair

  • Hair loses color

  • Fingernails and toenails become thickened and brittle

  • Losses of subcutaneous fat decreases elderly tolerance of cold (hypothermia is a major health problem)



  • Steady decrease in muscle fibers and muscle tones

  • Reduction of speed and power of muscle contractions

  • Elderly may experience impaired balance (due to slower reaction time)

  • Loss of overall stature (due to atrophy of intervertebral discs)

  • Stooping posture due to muscle weakness and kyphosis: curved posture, the head down, the back and knees bent, and a forward pitch with small, shuffling steps when walking.

Late adulthood years after 65

  • The loss of bone density and mass causes a compression of the bones especially in the vertebral area creating a slight decrease in height

  • Osteoporosis due to bone demineralization causing bones break more easily

  • A loss of cartilage makes painful joint complaints more common and contribute to a decrease range of movement and mobility

Late adulthood years after 65

Osteoporosis is a weakening of bones due to loss of bone density.

Osteoporosis is preventable to a very large extent by calcium intake and regular load-bearing exercise, such as weight training.

Sensory perceptual

Sensory/ perceptual

  • Eyes:

    • Shrunken appearance due to loss of orbital fat.

    • Slow blinking reflex

    • Looseness of the eyelids particularly the lower lid due to poorer muscle tone.

    • Continue loss of visual acuity, less power to adapt to sudden changes to more or less light or near to far objects (temporary blindness): hazard of night driving.

Late adulthood years after 65

  • Difficulty in discriminating similar colors.

  • May have

    • Cataract

    • Glaucoma

    • Reduce peripheral vision

    • And arcus senilis (white circle around the iris: it is a peripheral corneal opacity caused by a deposition of phospholipid and cholesterol granules in the corneal stroma )

Late adulthood years after 65

  • Hearing: after age 75, 50% or more have hearing deficits: higher tones are more difficult to hear than low ones

  • Smell and taste: older people, especially men, experience losses in both taste and smell, which may result in decreased appetite.

  • Touch: loss of skin receptors causing decrease sensation of pain, touch and temperature places the elderly at risk for burn or injuries.



  • Decreases inhalation of air due to musculoskeletal changes and calcification of costal cartilage which decreases lung expansion thus decreasing respiratory rate

  • Residual air will be greater (weaker expiratory muscle)

  • Decreased cough efficiency with age thus mucous secretions tend to collect more often causing infection

  • Dyspnoea with exercises



  • Heart working capacity will decrease especially during exercises

  • Heart rate slow in responding and slow to return to normal after physical activity

  • Decreased the arterial elasticity will reduce the blood supply to legs causing calf pain and to the brain causing dizziness.



  • Delayed in swallowing time

  • Increase tendency of indigestion due to decrease digestive enzymes and decrease muscle tone of GI system

  • Low absorption rate of nutrients and drugs due to decrease number of absorbing cells in GI

  • Decreased peristalsis movements causing constipation.



  • Decreased numbers of functioning nephrons lead to diminished kidney function

  • Urinary urgency and frequency are common in elderly due to enlarged prostate in men and weakness in muscles that support the bladder in women

Cognitive development

Cognitive development

  • An old adult maintains cognitive skills however, this will be affected with disease processes

  • Memory: age related problems occur in short-term memory

  • Old person needs more time to learn due to problem with retrieving information

Late adulthood years after 65

Health problems in late adulthood:

Health problems

Health problems

  • Dementia:

    • is a permanent or progressive organic mental disorder

    • It is a declining of cognitive abilities, characterized by personality changes, confusion, disorientation and deterioration of intellectual functioning and memory.

    • The most common type of irreversible dementia is Alzheimer’s disease (AD)

Late adulthood years after 65

  • Most prominent symptoms of AD are steady decline in memory, learning, attention, judgment, orientation and language skills as well as decline in physical abilities.

Late adulthood years after 65

Health problems in late adulthood:

Alois Alzheimer

Alzheimer’s disease affects a growing number of older persons—especially those over 80 year.

Cause is not known, but involves deterioration of the brain’s abilities to maintain itself.

Late adulthood years after 65

  • Parkinson’s disease:

    • Parkinson's disease is a chronic, progressive neurodegenerative movement disorder. Tremors, rigidity, slow movement (bradykinesia), poor balance, and difficulty walking (called parkinsonian gait) are characteristic of Parkinson's disease.

    • The cause is unknown (idiopathic)

Late adulthood years after 65

  • Parkinson's results from the degeneration of dopamine-producing nerve cells in the brain

  • Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that stimulates motor neurons, those nerve cells that control the muscles. When dopamine production is depleted, the motor system nerves are unable to control movement and coordination.

  • Parkinson's disease patients have lost 80% or more of their dopamine-producing cells by the time symptoms appear.

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