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the branch of health care dealing with the problems of aging and diseases of the aged; it is related to the science of gerontology, which is the study of the aging process in all its aspects, social as well as biologic. Geriatrics grows increasingly important as modern medicine and a rising standard of living lengthen life expectancy and increase the proportion of aged persons in society.

An important part of geriatrics is helping older persons live happy and satisfying lives. Geriatric specialists encourage their patients to follow useful and interesting pursuits and to adopt a sound mental attitude toward aging itself. The prevention of disease is also important in geriatrics, and stress is placed on suitable exercise, rest, and nutrition, and on maintenance of proper body weight. Regular and thorough medical examinations are another essential factor in the control of illness.

In geriatrics, there is also concern for the older person's psychological welfare, such as social contacts, economic security, interest in living, work opportunities after retirement, and continuing sense of belonging to society. Geriatrics recognizes that health of mind is essential to the health of the body.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


Rarely used terms for geriatrics.
[presby- + G. iatreia, medical treatment]
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012


(prĕz-bē-ăt′rĭks) [″ + iatrikos, healing]
An infrequently used synonym for geriatrics.
Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners