Prevalence of anaemia in a sample of elderly northeastern brazilians

Population growth is a worldwide phenomenon responsible for significant changes in the population pyramid. In this context, the increase in life expectancy has contributed significantly to the growth of the elderly population. Considering that this age group is associated with a decline in the functional reserve of multiple organic systems, a condition capable of causing dysfunctions and diseases in the elderly, the best clarification about the implications of aging becomes essential. The present research
aimed to study the prevalence of anemia in a sample of elderly people in northeastern Brazil. To that, 90 elderly residents in Mossoró-RN, belonging to groups of elderly people assisted by Family Health Strategy teams and arranged in different Family Health Care Centers, completed a questionnaire with socioeconomic data and a biochemical test that evaluated serum hemoglobin (Hb) concentrations. The study found a prevalence of 12.2% of anemia in participants (Hb <12 g / dl in women and Hb <13 g / dl in men), which was was in agreement with other Brazilian studies that involved elderly enrolled in the Family Health Unit. However, a lower prevalence of the disease was observed when compared to studies that evaluated elderly people living in long-term institutions. In addition, it was found that 7.8% were illiterate; 47.2% had incomplete 1st grade; 16.7% had completed 1st grade; 16.7% had incomplete secondary education; 13.3% were in the 2nd grade; and 3.3% had 3rd grade. Besides that, attention to anemia in the elderly would help to improve the quality of senile life while reduces their impact on the global burden of diseases, explained in part by its correlation with poor nutritional status and major cognitive impairments, which are capable of interfering with daily activities and interaction of patients.

Keywords: Anaemia. Aged. Prevalence.


Micheline M. F. C. Souza
Letícia L. Mendonça
José Edvan Souza-Júnior
Thiago L.H. Rego
José Rodolfo L.P. Cavalcanti

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