Original Research

Heart Failure in Older Adults: A Geriatrician Call for Action

As the population ages, heart failure is becoming a major public health challenge; clinicians need further evidence-based treatments to bridge the existing gap between guidelines and real-world clinical practice.

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In 2050, persons aged ≥ 85 years, also known as the oldest old, are projected to reach 18 million, accounting for 4.5% of the US population, up from 2.5% in 2030. 1 These patients are the fastest growing segment of the US population.

Advances in treating cardiovascular (CV) disease over the past 2 decades have led to an increased incidence of heart failure (HF) and hospitalizations among older patients. 2 Total costs of care for persons with HF have exceeded $30 billion annually and are expected to rise to more than $70 billion by 2030 due to growth of the aging population. 3,4 Moreover, the Framingham Study reported mortality increases with advancing age (HR 1.27 and 1.61 per decade in men and women, respectively). 5

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