Gastrointestinal hemorrhage and its management in geriatric age group
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Approximately 35%-40% of geriatric patients seek medical care for gastrointestinal symptoms at least once a year. At least 1% of the population aged over 80 years is hospitalized each year due to gastrointestinal hemorrhage. Gastrointestinal hemorrhage is frequently observed in this population and associated with high mortality and morbidity. Also, gastrointestinal hemorrhage is one of the main causes of hospitalization among geriatric patients. Geriatric patients with GIH constitute a subgroup of patients requiring special care in hospitals. The bleeding may occur in the upper or lower gastrointestinal tract and manifest itself with a variety of symptoms depending on its location. The incidence and natural course of hemorrhage are affected by antiplatelet and anticoagulant medications. The outcome of gastrointestinal hemorrhage in geriatric patients depends largely on the characteristics of bleeding lesion and comorbidities.