Turkish Journal of Geriatrics 1998 , Vol 1, Issue 2
Characteristics of Hospitalized Geriatric Patients in a Neurology Clinic
Ankara Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi, Nöroloji Anabilim Dalı-ANKARA Neurological problems are freguantly encountered in the geriatric population. Thus, there is a wide spread bilief that the patients in the neurology clinics mostly belong to the geriatric population. The aim of the present study is to investigate the validity of this belief and to ascertain the distribution of the neurological diagnoses and the mortality rate in the geriatric patients.The hospitalized patients who were treated in 1997 in the Neurology Department of the Ankara Medical School are investigated retrospectively and the patients who were 65-year-old or older are grouped as ''old'' and who were 64-year-old or yonger are grouped as ''not old''. From the 1000 patients who were treated in 1997 in our department, only 32% are 65-year-old or older. When the groups are compared statistically for the distributions of the neurological diagnoses, ischemic (57.2%) and haemorrhagic (7.5%) cerebrovascular accidents and dementia (4.4%) are more freguent in the ''old'' patients, whereas demyelinating diseases of the central nervous system (10.4%), diseases of the neuromuscular junction (3.8%), epilepsy (3.8%), headache (3.1%), ataxia (1.8%) and disorders under the ''others'' heading are more freguent in the ''not old'' patients. The mortality rate of the ''old'' group is twice that of the ''not old'' group. As the result, contrary to the widespread belief that most of the neurological hospitalized patients do not belong to the geriatric age group; the distribution of the diagnoses of the neurological diseases differs according to the age group and the rate of mortality secondary to a neurological disease is higher in the geriatric age group. Keywords : Geriatry, Neurology, Geriatric Neurology, Old Age, Mortality