Attitude, Perception And Interest Of Physiotherapy Students Towards Geriatric Master Degree Program: A Pilot Study.

  • Dr. Jyoti Parle


Population ageing is one of the most discussed phenomena in the present century. Growing old is irreversible and a continuous process and as age increases, changes take place in the body.   Clinical gerontology has stated that these changes occur across human lifespan and influences the risk of age related conditions.(1)

The term ‘degenerative changes’ are the changes that happen as age increases which are commonly associated with older adults or 60 years and above. Degenerative changes occur in many joints and it is combined with the loss of muscle mass which inhibits elderly patients' locomotion.(2) It is essential to take care of the health before these changes have an impact, as they take lesser time to occur and a much longer time to reverse.

In 2010, India had more than 91.6 million elderly and the number of elderlies was projected to reach 158.7 million in 2025.(3) According to a survey conducted in 2012, the population over the age of 60 years has tripled in last 50 years in India. With such a rise in the population, there is an impact on health. As per 2011 census, most common disabilities among the aged were locomotor and visual. Almost half of the elderly disabled population was reported to be suffering from these two types of disabilities.(4)Other conditions identified commonly in elderly are hypertension, osteoarthritis, COPD, ischemic heart disease, diabetes mellitus, lower GI dysmotility (dyspepsia and constipation), and depression. These account for nearly 85% of all diagnosis among elderly.(5) Musculoskeletal disorders especially arthritis is a major cause of disability and discomfort among elderly. This has led many elderly to depend on others for their day-to-day activities.(3)