Over the course of the past century, life expectancy has doubled in many developed countries due to a mix of factors, including enhanced life conditions, medical advances, and lifestyle changes. The population groups that show the largest increase are very old individuals, often referred to as the oldest old. Between 1980 and 2015, the number of individuals aged 80 and older increased by 350% according to the United Nations. This trend will continue and is likely to accelerate, particularly for individuals aged 90 and older. By 2050, population projections expect about 430 million people aged 80 and over, including 3.4 million aged 100 and over. This entry covers definitions and characteristics of oldest old age as well as ongoing debates, open research questions, and methodological ...

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