Target groups for screening elderly outpatients

Am J Prev Med. 1988 Jan-Feb;4(1):27-34.


A low-risk target group of 475 individuals 64-71 years of age was recruited from the community and received comprehensive screening assessments. Four hundred four unknown/untreated medical conditions were detected in 74.5% of the participants, but less than 5% of these conditions would have been detected using the most conservative screening procedures recommended for this age group. A more liberal, yet still focused, clinical evaluation could detect the medical conditions noted in 5% or more of the participants. However, 43% of the 279 unknown/untreated laboratory abnormalities were noted on tests that fulfill the more liberal of the accepted screening criteria. Despite a large number of detected conditions, an unfocused, comprehensive screening assessment is not recommended for this particular target group; rather, the use of a selective screening package is supported.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Health Services for the Aged*
  • Health Status Indicators*
  • Health Surveys*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mass Screening* / methods
  • Middle Aged
  • Outpatients