Predilection for Frailty Remedial Strategies Among Black and White Seniors

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Abstract

Background.

Frailty prevention and remedial programs based on exercise, hormone replacement, and vitamin supplementation are becoming available for use with older patients, but success of these programs depends largely on seniors' willingness to participate.

Methods.

We evaluated preferences for specific aspects of these programs using a sample of 359 older persons recruited from potential delivery sites. Main effects and subgroup analyses were done.

Results.

Subjects preferred stretching, chair-based, walking, and dynamic balance exercises over lifting weights, dancing, hormone and vitamin therapy; exercising alone in their own homes over exercising in groups; and vitamins over hormones. Preferences were affected to some extent by sex, race, recruitment site, and functional status. However, subjects' willingness even to consider exercise was rarely as high as the desired levels of participation set forth in Healthy People 2000.

Conclusions.

Physicians and public health authorities need to educate older persons about effective methods to prevent or treat frailty.

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