Special care for the elderly
The elderly need special care, because they are paradoxically frail but sturdy survivors who have not succumbed to life's many perils. So as physicians, we should respect the durability and success of their homeostatic mechanisms and minimize our pharmaceutical interventions. For example, when treating the elderly for dependent ankle edema due to venous incompetence, it is best to avoid diuretics and instead use compression stockings and exercise. This will reduce the likelihood of dehydration, with all its sequelae, including heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Competing interests: No competing interests