The Care Of The Older Person

An Invaluable Resource for Care Providers

Crucial information for those who care, provide, create, and build for our rapidly growing—and cherished—senior population

“….the aging of the population is an unprecedented phenomenon in human history….it is in fact a triumph of humankind over the adversities of the environment.”


Jose Morais , MD

Director, Division of Geriatric Medicine, McGill University


Society, as a whole is getting older. Thanks to the extraordinary advances in technology and medicine, humans are now living longer than ever before, and are shifting the demographic make-up on a worldwide scale.

As a result, more and more of us are living and engaging with an aging population in both our personal and professional lives, and there’s a heightened demand for concrete research and advice for how to effectively provide care for this growing demographic.

The Care of the Older Person brings together some of today’s most experienced researchers to provide concrete answers for care providers of all kinds—doctors, nurses, therapists, pharmaciststhose who build, run, and staff the facilities and housing for all of the aging population, as well as spouses and children of the elderly. Most importantly, this information is for seniors themselves, who want to feel empowered in their stage of life. 

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“We are living in an age of rapidly advancing technology. We are undergoing a revolution in communication and information availability. The human genome is known, disease is understood at a metabolic level, and drugs are created to target the mechanisms of disease. All these factors complement one another so that in our industrialized, computerized and linked world people have the ability to live much longer.”

Ronald M. Caplan, MD

“It takes one minute to prescribe a medication but years to discontinue it.”

Louise Mallet, Pharm.D


The Care of the Older Person is broken up into chapters written by an esteemed group of doctors and researchers, each covering a different aspect of elder care:

Overview of the Field (by Jose Morais, MD) presents an in-depth overview of the current state of geriatric medicine, including the unique challenges and opportunities characterizing this growing field today.

Frailty (by Sathya Karunananthan, PhD and Howard Bergman, MD) explores the increasing vulnerability of our bodies and organs as we age and what care providers can do to diagnose and treat individuals.

“Doctor, My Wife is Getting Forgetful” (by Serge Gauthier, MD) explores the natural decline in memory, and how to diagnose and address dementia in your patients, clients, or family.

How to Diagnose and Manage Delirium (by Haibin Yin, MD). Among elderly patients who come into the ER, 15% suffer from delirium or “acute brain failure.” This chapter explores the signs and treatments.

Why Does My Patient Have Gait & Balance Disorders? (by Olivier Beauchet, MD, PhD) explores the main causes and best treatments for the broad category of walking and balance problems.

Nutrition for Older Adults (by Jose Morais, MD) explores the prevalence of malnutrition in older populations, how to diagnose it, and how to treat it.

Incontinence in Older Adults (by Samer Shamout  MD and Lysanne Campeau, MDCM, PhD) explores the risks, diagnosis, and treatment of urinary incontinence.

Polypharmacy and Deprescribing in the Elderly (by Louise Mallet, Pharm.D). Polypharmacy is taking multiple medicines for chronic issues at the same time and is common among the elderly. This chapter explores the risks of polypharmacy and how to “deprescribe” unnecessary medications.

Elder Abuse (by Mark J. Yaffe, MDCM). Unfortunately, elder abuse is far too common in our society, and takes on many forms. This chapter helps care providers to identify elder abuse and learn how to address it.

Management of Older Patients in the Emergency Department (By Cyrille Launay, MD, PhD) provides an overview of the unique challenges facing ER staff in diagnosing and working with older patients.

An Overview of Late-Life Depression (By Artin Mahdanian, MD, MSc and Silvia Monti De Flores, MD) explores the importance of understanding late-life depression for care professionals, including tools for diagnosis and treatment.

Assessment of Decision-Making Capacity (By Catherine Ferrier, MD) provides an important analysis of how to determine a patient’s ability to make key decisions about their medical treatment, living situation, finances, and more.

How Do I Protect My Patient? (By Randy S. Perskin, Esq., JD) explores the important legal issues facing elderly patients and how care providers can best support them.

Medical Glossary (by Ronald M. Caplan, MD). A highly researched glossary of medical definitions that will help you to understand what you’re reading and navigate the often-confusing world of scientific terminology. Includes forward-looking research that gives you a sense of where the advances in geriatrics are going in the future.


The contributors to The Care for the Older Person are literally an all-star team of researchers, doctors, and clinical professionals. Their research-based advice is informed by decades of experience working in the fields that they write about.


Olivier Beauchet, MD

Dr. Beauchet holds a MD degree from the University of St-Etienne University (1999) and completed a specialty in Neurology and Internal Medicine and Geriatrics at St-Etienne University (France). In parallel, he holds a master of science in neuropsychology and a PhD in Human Motricity and handicap at St-Etienne University (France). Since 2015, he is a full Professor of Geriatrics at McGill University and the holder of the Dr. Joseph Kaufmann Chair in Geriatric Medicine (Faculty of Medicine, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada). Read More 


Ronald M. Caplan, MD

Ronald M. Caplan MD is an Obstetrician Gynecologist and medical author.

He did his medical and postgraduate training at McGill University, where his interest in renal disease in pregnancy and homotransplantation culminated in the first delivery of a baby from a mother who had received a deceased donor kidney transplant.

After serving on the Faculty of McGill University, he transferred to New York City, and a long career at the Joan and Sanford I. Weill Medical College of Cornell University , where he became one of the early proponents of minimally invasive surgery, and where  he is now Clinical Associate Professor Emeritus of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

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Serge Gauthier, MD

Medical studies at Université de Montréal, Neurology training at McGill University, Research Fellowship at Prof. Theodore L. Sourkes laboratory, Allen Memorial Institute, Montreal. Clinical investigator and staff neurologist at the Montreal Neurological Hospital and Institute (1976-1986), Director of the McGill Centre for Studies in Aging (1986-1996), Senior Scientist of the CIHR-Rx&D program (1997-2007). Currently Professor in the Departments of Neurology & Neurosurgery, Psychiatry, Medicine, at McGill University, and Director of the Alzheimer Disease and Related Disorders Research Unit of the McGill University Research Centre for Studies in Aging, Douglas Mental Health University Institute. Read More


José A. Morais, MD

Dr. Morais holds a MD degree from the University of Montreal (1987) and completed a specialty in Internal Medicine and Geriatrics at McGill University, Canada. He went on to complete a 3-year Research Fellowship in Nutrition and Metabolism at McGill Nutrition Centre. Since 1996, he is an independent clinician-investigator based at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) – Crabtree Nutrition Laboratory, Montreal, Canada. He is since 2008 Associate Professor of Medicine, McGill University. Read More


Dr. Howard Bergman, MD

Professor Bergman is Chair of the Department of Family Medicine and Professor of Family Medicine, Medicine, and Oncology at McGill University where he was the first Dr. Joseph Kaufmann Professor of Geriatric Medicine from 2001-2015. He is Special Advisor (International) to the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine. He is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (CAHS). Read More


Abraham Fuks, MD

Dr. Abraham Fuks is a graduate of the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University where he obtained his M.D.,C.M. in 1970 and where he is currently a Professor in the Departments of Medicine, Pathology and Oncology.His research interests have included the immunogenetics of diabetes, the biology of tumor-associated antigens and cell adhesion molecules, and ethical aspects of the design of trials involving human subjects. Read More


Phil Gold, MD

Phil Gold is the Douglas G. Cameron Professor of Medicine, and Professor of Physiology and Oncology, at McGill University. He has served as the Inaugural Director of the McGill (now Goodman) Cancer Centre, Chairman of the Department of Medicine at McGill and Physician-in-Chief at the Montreal General Hospital. He is presently the Executive Director of the Clinical Research Centre of the McGill University Health Centre at The Montreal General Hospital.Read More


Lysanne Campeau, MD

Dr. Lysanne Campeau completed her medical degree in 2005 and her urology residency in 2010 at McGill University, when she became a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Canada in Urology. She then went on to pursue her clinical and research interest in voiding dysfunction at Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine in North Carolina, where she obtained a Doctorate of Philosophy in the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology in 2013. Read More 

Sathya Karunananthan, PhD

Sathya Karunananthan holds a PhD in epidemiology from McGill University. Over the last decade, she has been involved in several international research programs on frailty and has co-authored a number peer-reviewed papers on defining and assessing the usefulness of frailty as a clinical tool. Read More

Artin A. Mahdanian, MD

Artin Mahdanian, MD Tehran University, received an MSc in psychiatric research from McGill University, where he is currently completing his psychiatric residency. He is a Diversity Leadership Fellow, American Psychiatric Association. Read More

Silvia Monti De Flores, MD

Dr. Silvia Monti De Flores is a McGill Psychiatry graduate and Attending Staff Psychiatrist in Psychogeriatrics, attached to the Mood Disorders Program at McGill University Health Centre, psychiatry outpatient. She is a consultant to the Geriatric Medicine Clinic at the Montreal General Hospital. Read More

Samer Shamout, MD

Dr. Samer Shamout earned his M.B.B.S in medical studies in 2005 at Jordan University of Science and Technology and completed his clinical MSc. training in Urology in 2010 at the Alexandria University of Egypt. Dr. Shamout has been practicing since 2010, the first 5 years in United Arab Emirates, at the Ministry of Health Hospital. Selected as one of the top hospitals in the United Arab Emirates. Read More

Haibin Yin, MD

Dr. Haibin Yin is an attending staff member in the Division of Geriatric Medicine at Jewish General Hospital since 2014. He is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University. He is actively involved in clinical teaching of medical students and residents. Read More

Catherine Ferrier, MD

Dr. Ferrier is Assistant Professor, Department of Family Medicine at McGill University and holds a Certificate of Special Competence in Care of the Elderly from the College of Family Physicians of Canada. She works as a consultant in Geriatric Medicine, as well as in primary care Family Medicine. Read More 

Cyrille Launay, MD

Dr. Launay was a geriatrician at the University Hospital of Angers, France until 2015, when he joined the division of geriatrics, University of Lausanne. His PhD thesis described the Brief Geriatric Assessment, a tool to predict prolonged length of hospital stay. Read More

Louise Mallet, Pharm.D

Louise Mallet is currently a full Professor of Pharmacy at the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Montreal. She is also a clinical pharmacist with the interdisciplinary team in geriatrics in the emergency room at McGill University Health Center.  Read More

Randy S. Perskin, Esq.

Randy Perskin received her BA degree from Barnard College (Columbia University), and her JD from Fordham Law School. She is a long experienced and well-recognized Elder Law Attorney. Read More

Mark Yaffe, MD

Mark Yaffe is a tenured Full Professor in the McGill University Department of Family Medicine and at St. Mary’s Hospital Center in Montreal, Canada. In 2007 he was awarded the Inaugural Prix d’Excellence for Advancement of Teaching of Family Medicine by the Quebec College of Family Physicians. Read More 

Suggestions for other topics relating to care of the older person? Questions?

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The contents of this book and e-book and all materials contained in this book and e-book are for informational purposes only. The materials and information contained in this book and e-book are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider if you have questions regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you may have read in this book and e-book. Medical professionals should not rely on any drug , drug dosage, or other information in this e-book and book, which is for informational purposes only.

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. The authors do not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned in this book and e-book. Reliance on any information provided in this book and e-book is solely at you own risk.

This book and e-book and its contents are provided on an “as is” basis.

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