Depression in the Elderly — Falls and Pitfalls

Committing a patient to a course of drug therapy, particularly a long-term one, often represents a delicate balancing act in which the physician must juggle estimates of benefit and risk — and increasingly, must factor in costs as well. As with so many things in medicine, the stakes are dramatically higher for the elderly. Older persons have the greatest burden of disease that could benefit from therapeutic or preventive therapy but are also more likely to have side effects from such therapy. These considerations are magnified even further for frail older patients with medically complex conditions who live in nursing…

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