Referral of Elderly Patients With Severe Renal Failure: Questionnaire Survey of Physicians
BMJ (British Medical Journal). 1996 Aug 24; 313(7055): 466.
The proportion of elderly people in the United Kingdom is increasing. The increasing number of those with renal failure is reflected in an increase in the total number of elderly patients receiving renal replacement. In 1992, 12% of patients undergoing such treatment were over 75 compared with 3% in 1982. Dialysis is feasible in elderly people, but there may be bias against referring elderly patients with renal failure to nephrologists. The reasons for low referral rates are unclear but may include lack of resources, poor prognosis, or judgments about the quality of life of elderly people. To study the factors applying to the referral of elderly patients with renal failure we undertook a questionnaire survey of hospital physicians.
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