"The physician should recognize that the elderly with sinonasal complaints have unique considerations that affect both the differential diagnosis and therapeutic options." - Dr. Thomas Higgins
Dr. Higgins was the invited lecturer for the University of Louisville Department of Family Medicine and Geriatrics Ground Rounds on January 11, 2013. Discussing nose and sinus disorders of the elderly, he described the different conditions common in the elderly and management options. "The aging process causes changes in nasal structure as well as physiology," said Dr. Higgins, "The aging nose has weaker cartilage support, causing a longer, droopy nose that can contribute to obstruction. In addition, the cilia that moves mucus in the nose are not as effective, causing thick mucus drainage...We also have to consider that some elderly are poor candidates for surgery, but we still have to be diligent in managing their sinusitis, particularly in patients suffering from recurrent pneumonia related to sinusitis."
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