The number of Americans over the age of 65 grew by over one-third during the past decade and is expected to rise, with important implications for planning and delivery of health care.1 The most problematic expression of population aging is the clinical condition of frailty, defined as a state of vulnerability to poor resolution of homeostasis following stress; it is a consequence of cumulative decline in multiple physiological systems over a lifespan.2 The cumulative decline erodes homeostatic reserve until minor stressor events trigger disproportionately large and negative changes in health status. Up to half of those aged 85 years and older are frail, and this is associated with increased risk of disability and other physical and mental health outcomes.3

Read More