Editorial

Vive la Difference!

Authors: John Standridge, MD

Abstract

Vive la difference! Sex differences in childhood prompt little boys to play with guns and little girls to play with dolls—admittedly a fading stereotype. As adults, men are from Mars and women are Venusian. Do seniors also reflect sex differences or does a socialization-of-aging process somehow eventually amalgamate and homogenize the two sexes? Beyond the hormonal and muscle mass differences, beyond the archeological history that men are hunters and warriors and women are nurturers and fertility goddesses, beyond the commercial images of the present day, there exists our aging and vulnerable male and female patients. How should our relationship, communication, and focus vary with respect to sex differences in the aging individual?

This content is limited to qualifying members.

Existing members, please login first.

If you have an existing account please login now to access this article or view your purchase options.

Purchase only this article ($15)

Create a free account, then purchase this article to download or access it online for 24 hours.

Purchase an SMJ online subscription ($75)

Create a free account, then purchase a subscription to get complete access to all articles for a full year.

Purchase a membership plan (fees vary)

Premium members can access all articles plus recieve many more benefits. View all membership plans and benefit packages.

References

1. Wood RH, Gardner RE, Ferachi KA, et al. Physical function and quality of life in older adults: gender differences. South Med J 2005;98:504–512.
 
2. Krondl M, Lau D, Coleman P, et al. Tailoring of nutritional support for older adults in the community. J Nutr Elder 2003;23:17–32.
 
3. Bauer MJ, Adler G, Kuskowski MA, et al. The influence of age and gender on the driving patterns of older adults. J Women Aging 2003;15:3–16.
 
4. Murtagh KN, Hubert HB. Gender differences in physical disability among an elderly cohort. Am J Public Health 2004;94:1406–1411.
 
5. von Strauss E, Aguero-Torres H, Kareholt I, et al. Women are more disabled in basic activities of daily living than men only in very advanced ages: a study on disability, morbidity, and mortality from the Kungsholmen Project. J Clin Epidemiol 2003;56:669–677.
 
6. Kempen GI, Sanderman R, Scaf-Klomp W, et al. Gender differences in recovery from injuries to the extremities in older persons: a prospective study. Disabil Rehabil 2003;25:827–832.
 
7. Grimby A, Svanborg A. Morbidity and health-related quality of life among ambulant elderly citizens.Aging (Milano) 1997;9:356–364.