Seniors rehabilitatin – clinical implications and therapy planning
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Centrum Medyczne i Rehabilitacji Kriosonik w Warszawie
Katedra i Klinika Rehabilitacji, Wydział Nauk Medycznych, Uniwersytet Warmińsko-Mazurski w Olsztynie
Instytut Fizjoterapii, Wydział Nauk o Zdrowiu, Uniwersytet im. J. Kochanowskiego w Kielcach
Centro de Rehabilitacion in Guadalajara, Jal., Mexico
Publication date: 2023-03-15
Corresponding author
Olga Wolska
ul. Świderska100/4, Warszawa, e-mail:
Pol. Ann. Med. 2009;16(1):148-159
Introduction. Aging is a natural and prevalent process. It concerns all organs and systems, even if there are no signs of pathology. At present there is no age limit which indicates specifically the beginning of senility. The border between physiology and pathology is blurred; consequently, the treatment of some geriatric diseases is difficult, especially when preventive measures have not been taken. Rehabilitation should focus on personal well-being of the patients and improving their quality of life. Aim. The aim of this article is to discuss issues concerning the planning of complex rehabilitation of geriatric patients and its management. Materials and methods. This article analyses selected clinical aspects of: osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, pulmonary and circulatory disturbances, prevention of bedsore and contractures in bedridden patients. The process of planning the therapy, including cardiologic and orthopaedic rehabilitation, is presented. The application of the Get Up and Go Test to evaluate patients’ fitness and the SMART principle when planning a rehabilitation course is proposed. Essential factors in a correctly planned therapy of geriatric patients are emphasised. Discussion. Due to scientific evidence confirming the efficiency of regular physical activity in the case of senior patients, they should be motivated to undertake physical exercises and to cooperate. Rehabilitation aims at: improving general well–being, allowing to maintain an independent way of life, reducing the risk of some diseases and easing their course, reducing pain and disability effects. Complex geriatric rehabilitation concerns every patient in terms of motion ability, pain release, as well as psychological and social spheres of life. Properly conducted and systematically undertaken physical activities can improve physical and mental health of senior patients, even though they do not stop the aging process itself. Orthopaedic devices for geriatric patients decrease their disability. Improvement in motor functioning, personal care skills and independence restores patients’ self-confidence, reinforces their social and cultural integration and allows them to become professionally active again. Conclusions. Geriatric patients suffer from various diseases and require personalised rehabilitation. A well planned rehabilitation and physical therapy program should include all factors influencing the quality of life of such patients and should provide rehabilitation aims. Rehabilitation should be long-termed, complex and involve elements of prophylactics.
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