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Last reviewed by: Aleksey Portnov , medical expert, on 01.06.2018

Years go by and, unfortunately, each of us does not grow younger. With our ecology, a sedentary lifestyle, improper diet, an eternal lack of time for one's health, the body ages quickly enough. And the outlaying of the resource of the organism is fraught with exacerbation of many chronic diseases. What to do in this situation? To whom to address? For this, there is a doctor-geriatrician.

Who is a doctor?

The doctor-geriatrician is an expert, usually a therapeutic specialty, who studies, diagnoses and develops a regimen for the treatment of diseases of the elderly. Who are these "elderly" people? After all, now it happens that even in 20 years a person has a dozen chronic diseases and feels 50. Therefore, in geriatrics it is accepted that an elderly person is a man or a woman at the age of 60 years.

Where can I find a geriatric doctor? Usually this specialist is not found in the usual district clinic. They are in special centers for the study of gerontology (the science of the processes of aging organs and the person as a whole), as well as such in private clinics.

When should I contact the geriatrician?

Most often, a person (not important, a man or a woman) has about four or five chronic diseases by the age of fifty. Over the next ten years, the number of chronic diseases almost doubles. As a result, so-called "senile" diseases occur in the form of deterioration or loss of hearing, deterioration or loss of vision, mental dementia. To maximally keep your health in its original form, you need to turn to a geriatric doctor for preventive purposes already from 55-60 years. It is also worth paying attention to the signs of such common diseases of the elderly as myocardial infarction, ischemic heart disease and stroke. And with the first symptoms, call a geriatric doctor.

What tests do you need to pass to when addressing a geriatrician?

Most often the doctor at the first reception himself appoints a list of laboratory studies, based on existing diseases and anamnesis analysis, but to facilitate the process, you can come to the reception fully armed.

What kind of tests do you need to pass to a doctor-geriatric doctor?

  • a general blood test (to determine the presence of chronic inflammation, blood diseases);
  • analysis for blood glucose (for timely detection of diabetes mellitus);
  • general urine analysis for determining the presence of chronic or acute diseases of the genitourinary system);
  • the expanded biochemical analysis of blood (for an estimation of work of a liver and kidneys, and as a mineral structure of blood);
  • a blood test for thyroid hormones;

It is also advisable to take a gynecologist (for women) and a urologist (for men) to measure pressure and pulse before taking.

At repeated reception the doctor-geriatrician can appoint such laboratory researches as:

  • blood test for female or male sex hormones (to identify reproductive problems, alleviate symptoms of menopause);
  • the analysis of blood on onkomarkery (for revealing presence of malignant neoplasms);
  • analysis for cholesterol (for the timely determination of a violation and the appointment of a diet);
  • coagulogram of blood (for appointing blood thinners if necessary);
  • other narrowly focused laboratory studies.

What diagnostic methods does the geriatrician use?

When you receive a doctor, the geriatrician carefully examines the person's history, notes the presence of certain chronic and acute diseases, indicates the drugs taken for their names and doses. Draws attention to the marks of highly specialized specialists and, if required, directs them for further investigation. Upon examination, the doctor-geriatrician examines the condition of the mucous membranes of the mouth, eye conjunctiva, color and the integrity of the skin. Then he listens breathing organs with a phonendoscope, checks the main reflexes, measures pressure and pulse, and fixes complaints of the patient.

What other diagnostic methods does the doctor-geriatrician use?

If necessary, the doctor-geriatrician can be sent to:

  • cardiogram (for checking the heart rate and clarifying diagnoses of diseases of the cardiovascular system);
  • Ultrasound (to determine violations of internal organs, as well as the detection of benign or malignant neoplasms);
  • X-ray (to determine the condition of the musculoskeletal system, respiratory system, gastrointestinal tract);
  • angiography (for the detection of circulatory disorders of the brain);
  • endoscopy (to identify problems of the gastrointestinal tract);
  • CT scan - computed tomography - (to detect abnormalities in organs and tissues);
  • MRI - magnetic resonance imaging (for diagnosis of disorders in organs and tissues, as well as detection of tumors);
  • biopsy (to select a piece of tissue or fluid of the tumor for subsequent histological examination).

What does the geriatrician do?

Let's take a situation: a person lives, lives, sleeps, goes to work and then illness comes. Naturally, this person immediately turns to a specialist who prescribes to him an impressive number of medicines, each of which has an equally impressive number of side effects. The person begins to take everything according to the purpose and understands that the liver can no longer cope with such a load, and then there was also hypertension. He goes to the therapist, who in turn assigns to him more pills, when reading the annotation to which it turns out that they can not be taken with another chronic disease. It turns out a vicious circle of some kind. That's it is in such situations comes to the aid of a doctor-geriatrician. He is engaged in the analysis of all available human diseases and on the basis of these data is building a treatment regimen. It turns out that the doctor-geriatrician should go only when there are illnesses? Not really. The duty of this doctor also includes a set of measures to maximally maintain the normal physical condition of an elderly patient, the development of a balanced physical activity, recommendations for nutrition and much more. Also, these specialists have a close relationship with medical and social assistance for people with disabilities and people with disabilities.

What diseases are treated by the geriatrician?

Geriatrics covers a fairly wide range of diseases. There are such narrow specializations as: geriatric psychiatry, geriatric nephrology, geriatric cardiology, geriatric neurology, geriatric oncology and many others. So what kind of diseases heals the geriatrician?

  • cardiovascular diseases (cardiac ischemia, heart failure, various types of arteriopathy, and others);
  • neurological diseases (strokes, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, dementia and others);
  • mental disorders (depression, anxiety, dementia, schizophrenia and others);
  • disorders of metabolism and endocrine organs diseases (diabetes mellitus, thyrotoxicosis, lipidosis and others);
  • diseases of the genitourinary sphere (impotence, prostate adenoma, renal failure, senile incontinence, etc.):
  • diseases of the gastrointestinal tract (devirticulosis, constipation, hemorrhoids, rectal fissures and others);
  • diseases of the respiratory system (asthma, chronic bronchitis and others);
  • disorders in the musculoskeletal system (arthritis, arthrosis, prolapse of spinal discs, neuropathies, etc.);
  • oncological diseases (conditions after cancer surgery, chemotherapy, etc.).

Advices of geriatrician

Every person wants to live long and at the same time have a minimum of illnesses. In order to do this you need to follow the advice of a geriatric doctor. How it does not sound trite, but you need to lead a maximally healthy lifestyle. So:

  • give up bad habits. Smoking reduces the life of the lungs and heart for 5 years, and alcohol consumption harms not only the liver, but also the brain, the kidneys, the heart, the pancreas;
  • give up fatty and spicy food. Such food leads to a set of excess weight, the deposition of atherosclerotic plaques on the walls of blood vessels, an increase in the level of cholesterol in the blood;
  • use enough liquid and fiber. This will help to avoid problems with kidneys, gastrointestinal tract, help to forget about constipation;
  • observe the regime of the day. A healthy strong sleep has a positive effect not only on the physical, but also on the mental state of a person;
  • struggle with excess weight. Excess weight provokes cardiovascular diseases and diseases of the musculoskeletal system;
  • lead an active lifestyle. Moderate physical load will help to get rid of blood stagnation in the small pelvis, will lead the muscles into tone, and also positively affect the body as a whole, because they say "in a healthy body, a healthy mind";
  • avoid strong stress. And if he has overtaken you, then use natural sedatives (valerian, motherwort);
  • take vitamins and mineral complexes in the winter season, and in summer eat lots of fruits and vegetables. This will help maximize the use of natural resources to improve their own immunity;
  • try to rest every year on vacation. Ideal option will be a trip to the sea, beyond the city;
  • once a year, go through a complete examination. This will help to avoid the appearance of new diseases and aggravation of old chronic ones;
  • smile more often, because laughter prolongs life!

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