Turkish Journal of Geriatrics 2017 , Vol 20, Issue 3
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ELDERLY AND NON-ELDERLY ASTHMA PATIENTS?
Dilek ÇAKMAKCI KARADOĞAN1, Vehbi AYHAN2, Adile Berna DURSUN2
1Hopa State Hospital, Clinic of Chest Diseases, ARTVIN
2Recep Tayyip Erdoğan University, Department of Immunology and Allergic Diseases, RIZE
Introduction: Previous studies have shown that diagnostic delay increases the severity of asthma in elderly populations. Addressing the disease characteristics in elderly patients may prevent delayed diagnosis and allow for better asthma control.

Materials and Method: Data of 160 asthma patients who had regular checkups in the last year were collected from a tertiary university hospital. Patients were divided into two groups: non-elderly (aged <60 years) and elderly (aged ≥60 years). Demographic characteristics, comorbidities, and clinical and functional parameters were documented.

Results: Most patients were non-elderly (68.1%) and never smokers (83.1%). Mean age at diagnosis and mean duration of asthma were higher in the elderly group; most elderly patients had late-onset asthma (p<0.05). Ratio of patients with a smoking history was lower, comorbidity rates were higher, and more patients were overweight in the elderly group (p<0.05). Fewer elderly patients had aeroallergen sensitization, polysensitization, or allergic rhinitis (p <0.05). Mean number of hospitalizations was higher, ad ratio of patients with good asthma symptom control was lower in the elderly group (p <0.05). In the elderly group, the ratio of the mean forced expiratory volume in the first second to the forced vital capacity and forced expiratory flow at 25%–75% of forced vital capacity were lower (p <0.05).

Conclusion: In elderly patients, asthma control was poorer and the rates of late-onset asthmatics (90.2%) and never-smoker asthmatics (92.2%) were higher. Despite the lower atopy rate (45.1%), the sensitization pattern was similar to that in younger patients. Keywords : Asthma; Aged; Age at onset