Content » Vol 52, Issue 6

Special report

Need for comprehensive management of frailty at an individual level: European perspective from the advantage joint action on frailty

Branko Gabrovec, Eleftheria Antoniadou, Dagmar Soleymani, Ewa Kadalska, Ana Maria Carriazo, Luz López Samaniego, Péter Csizmadia, Anne Hendry, Olatz Albaina Bacaicoa, Marjetka Jelenc, Špela Selak, Demi Patsios, Konstantinos Stolakis, Manolis Mentis, Fotis Papathanasopoulos, Elias Panagiotopoulos, Leocadia Rodríguez Mañas
National Institute of Public Health, National Institute of Public Health, Slovenia
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-2687

Abstract

Objectives: ADVANTAGE Joint Action is a large collaborative project co-founded by the European Commission and its Member States to build a common understanding of frailty for Member States on which to base a common management approach for older people who are frail or at risk of developing frailty. One of the key objectives of the project is presented in this paper; how to manage frailty at the individual level.
Methods: A systematic review of the literature was conducted, including grey literature and good practices when possible.
Results: The management of frailty should be directed towards comprehensive and holistic treatment in multiple and related fields. Prevention requires a multifaceted approach addressing factors that have resonance across the individual’s life course. Comprehensive geriatric assessment to diagnose the condition and plan a personalized multidomain treatment increases better outcomes. Multicomponent exercise programmes, adequate protein and vitamin D intake, when insufficient, and reduction in polypharmacy and inadequate prescription, are the most effective strategies found in the literature to manage frailty effectively.
Conclusion: Frailty can be effectively prevented and managed with a multidomain intervention strategy based on comprehensive geriatric assessment.

Lay Abstract

ADVANTAGE Joint Action is a project co-founded by the European Commission and the Member States, with the aim of building a common understanding of frailty on which to base an approach for older people who are frail or at risk. Based on a systematic review of the literature, including grey literature and good practice, where possible, this paper proposes some key interventions to tackle frailty. Prevention should be based on a multifaceted approach, addressing factors that have resonance across the individual’s life course. All older people (over 70 years of age) should be offered a screening test and, if positive, referred for diagnosis. The management of frailty must be based on comprehensive geriatric assessment, to enable effective planning. Multicomponent exercise programmes, adequate protein and vitamin D intake, when insufficient, as well as reduction in poly-pharmacy and inadequate prescription are the most effective strategies to manage frailty.

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