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Elderly experience long-term cognitive decline after surgery

eed have long-term implications for survival and quality of life.

While this study was not designed to uncover the causes of the decline, Monk said that the body' inflammatory response to the surgery likely plays an important role. She said that further research is needed to determine whether actions taken before, during and after surgery can lessen the possible deleterious effects of inflammation.

For example, anti-inflammatory agents can be given before surgery, Monk said. During surgery, inflammation can be modulated by temperature control, use of regional rather than general anesthesia or the use of beta-blockers. After surgery, closer attention should be paid to optimal pain management and infection control, she said.


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Contact: Richard Merritt
Merri006@mc.duke.edu
919-684-4148
Duke University Medical Center
26-Oct-2004


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