By Karen Gershman
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Extra resources for Little Black Book of Geriatrics, 3rd edition
Testosterone may be helpful in increasing libido in postmenopausal women, many of whom experience a loss of interest in sex. The drug Estratest, which combines testosterone and estrogen, has been used successfully by some women for that purpose, though it has never been approved for that use by the Food GERIATRIC HEALTH INFORMATION 35 and Drug Administration (FDA). In fact, some groups have petitioned the FDA to ban any marketing of the drug. COMING TO TERMS WITH AGING Retirement brings the good life to some, the opposite to others.
Usually, but not always, the initial dosage should be small. But merely reducing the dosage of drugs in the elderly is not sufﬁcient. Continual monitoring by the patient and physician is important. If a drug is ineffective at an initial low dosage, it may be necessary to increase the dosage or to try another medicine. Also, a patient may become frail or develop a new illness requiring a different drug. Given all of this, it might seem that drugs cause more problems than they solve. However, despite all the potential problems associated with drugs, they can be lifesaving for the elderly as well as for the general population.
Similarly, as a person’s joints stiffen, he is apt to walk and exercise less. However, continued movement is essential for maintaining strength, balance, ﬂexibility, and endurance. In addition, good nutrition and exercise help people to sleep soundly and to avoid mild depression. Body mass index (BMI) gives a good indication of whether a person is at a desirable weight. Obesity is deﬁned as a BMI of at least 30. If a popula- BMI BMI is calculated as follows: Weigh yourself. Your weight = ____ pounds.
Little Black Book of Geriatrics, 3rd edition by Karen Gershman