Research Article

The elderly in a coronary unit.

Br Med J 1976; 2 doi: (Published 21 August 1976) Cite this as: Br Med J 1976;2:451
  1. B O Williams,
  2. T B Begg,
  3. T Semple,
  4. J B McGuinness


    The clinical features of myocardial infarction were compared in 104 patients over the age of 70 and 399 younger patients admitted to a coronary care unit. Absence of an age bar at 70 years has increased the number of admission to the unit by 24%, and the number of patients with proved infarcts by 26%. Severe complications are more common and mortality is doubled in the elderly. Although immediate management of primary ventricular fibrillation is as successful in older as in younger patients, treatment of the elderly with less dramatic conditions is less successful. The elderly survivors tend to spend longer in the coronary unit and subsequently in the general medical ward.