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Frailty

Frailty is a state of being highly vulnerable to stressors, such as an injury or illness or extremes of heat or cold. This vulnerability results in high rates of death and poor health outcomes, including disability. As people age, and as a consequence of certain diseases, there is increasing risk of becoming frail, and the ability to bounce back from illness is greatly diminished. This entry discusses the characteristics and causes of frailty as well as the effect of frailty on life-span development.

In more severe stages, those who are frail can be recognized by weakness, slowness, low physical activity, and in end stages, low energy and otherwise unexplained weight loss. These criteria for frailty develop progressively and in a predictable order and then co-occur. However, ...

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