Turkish Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2009 , Vol 55 , Num 2

Principles of Medical Treatment in Elderly Patients with Rheumatic Diseases

Yeşim Kirazlı 1
1 Ege Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi, Fiziksel Tıp ve Rehabilitasyon Anabilim Dalı, İzmir, Türkiye

It is known that elderly patients with rheumatic diseases experience pain more than younger ones and their functional levels and quality of life scores are less. Paracetamol is the drug of choice for the treatment of pain. In regard to gastrointestinal and cardiovascular side effects, the use of NSAIDs should be cautious and high doses should be avoided. Tramadol and opioids could be tried in the presence of severe pain. It has been shown that corticosteroid usage in rheumatic diseases increases the risk of infection. The percentage of elderly patients with rheumatoid arthritis who were given disease modifying anti rheumatic drug (DMARD) is less than of younger patients. Therefore, long term efficacy and safety data will be obtained as DMARD's and biological agents are more widely used in the elderly.

Keywords : Elderly, rheumatic diseases, paracetamol, nonsteroidal anti-inflamatory drugs, corticosteroid, disease modifying drugs, biological agents