Within the next 15 years, the population of adults 65 years and older in the United States will double to approximately 70 million. Physicians must be well prepared to care for this rapidly growing population. Senior adults comprise a large proportion of most primary care practices in the United States, and the unique needs of this population cannot be overstated. Although traditional preventive screening modalities and disease-specific care models are of great utility, these processes may not be appropriate or consistent with the health goals of many older patients with multiple chronic conditions and reduced functional capacity. This Concise Review highlights commonly encountered clinical scenarios important to the care of these older patients. The topics include diagnosis and management of mild cognitive impairment, assessment of the cognitively impaired driver, cancer screening in the older patient, and sarcopenia.
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