What Causes Weight Loss In The Elderly?

Unintentional weight loss in persons older than 65 years is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. The most common etiologies are malignancy, nonmalignant gastrointestinal disease, and psychiatric conditions.

Is it normal for an elderly person to lose weight?

About 15% to 20% of seniors experience sudden weight loss, according to the Canadian Medical Association Journal. Though some weight loss can be a normal part of aging — partially due to shrinking muscle mass — losing a substantial amount of weight over a short period of time can be a sign of an underlying condition.

When should you worry about weight loss?

The point at which unexplained weight loss becomes a medical concern is not exact. But many doctors agree that a medical evaluation is called for if you lose more than 5 percent of your weight in six months to a year, especially if you’re an older adult.

What is unintentional weight loss in older adults?

Unintentional weight loss is the involuntary decline in total body weight over time. In clinical practice, it is encountered in up to 8% of all adult outpatients1 and 27% of frail people 65 years and older. Weight loss is an important risk factor in elderly patients.

What health problems can cause rapid weight loss?

However, unintentional weight loss may be a sign of one of these medical conditions.

  • Muscle loss. Muscle loss, or muscle wasting, can lead to unexpected weight loss.
  • Overactive thyroid.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Diabetes.
  • Depression.
  • Inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
  • Endocarditis.

What is the most common cause of weight loss in the elderly?

Unintentional weight loss in persons older than 65 years is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. The most common etiologies are malignancy, nonmalignant gastrointestinal disease, and psychiatric conditions.

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What tests are done for unexplained weight loss?

Tests that are commonly done include:

  • Complete blood count (CBC): A CBC can show evidence of infections, anemia (a lack of red blood cells that can be caused by many conditions), and more.
  • Thyroid panel.
  • Liver function tests.
  • Kidney function tests.
  • Blood sugar (glucose)
  • Urinalysis.

Why am I losing weight for no reason?

Unintentional weight loss does not always have an identifiable underlying cause but, in addition to the causes already mentioned, it’s often the result of: depression. an overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism), or over-treating an underactive thyroid. cancer.

How much weight loss is concerning in a week?

Summary: According to experts, losing 1–2 pounds (0.45–0.9 kg) per week is a healthy and safe rate, while losing more than this is considered too fast. However, you may lose more than that during your first week of an exercise or diet plan.

How much weight loss is concerning in a month?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it’s 1 to 2 pounds per week. That means, on average, that aiming for 4 to 8 pounds of weight loss per month is a healthy goal.

What happens if an elderly person loses too much weight?

Health Concerns About Weight Loss Unintentionally losing too much weight as you get older can cause: Decreased quality of life. ‌Increased risk of death (mortality) and disease (morbidity) ‌A decline in physical activities that promote health.

What medication can cause weight loss?

Four weight-loss drugs have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for long-term use:

  • Bupropion-naltrexone (Contrave)
  • Liraglutide (Saxenda)
  • Orlistat (Xenical)
  • Phentermine-topiramate (Qsymia)
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Can blood pressure pills make you lose weight?

Overall, people who took the combination pill lost more weight than their counterparts who were given a placebo. The higher the dose, the more substantial the weight loss, and the more likely it was to be maintained over time, the study shows.

What is considered extreme weight loss?

Extreme weight-loss is defined as a loss of more than 1kg a week for a sustained period. Under such circumstances, your body is unlikely to be able to keep up and noticeable symptoms are bound to appear. Some may seem harmless on the surface, like minor hair-loss or feeling cold more frequently.

Why does stress cause weight loss?

Inflammation and activation of vagal nerve. Stress and poor dietary choices as a result of stress can contribute to widespread inflammation and weight loss. This inflammation can cause activation of the vagus nerve, which influences how the gut processes and metabolizes food.

Does diabetes cause weightloss?

In people with diabetes, insufficient insulin prevents the body from getting glucose from the blood into the body’s cells to use as energy. When this occurs, the body starts burning fat and muscle for energy, causing a reduction in overall body weight.

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