Geriatric Pharmacology

Publication ID Published Volume
124 January 24, 2005 1
Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Paul L. Foster School of Medicine


Introduction: This team-based learning session was designed to instruct students on issues in geriatric pharmacology and to provide strategies for prescribing to elderly patients. Methods: The learning materials were used in a 2-hour session facilitated by both a physician and a scientist. This module is part of a year-long course in pharmacology using multiple team learning modules to teach content. Results: Using team learning, a single faculty is able to facilitate small group work in a large classroom setting. Students are more engaged and active in the learning process and some data suggest better educational outcomes. Discussion: The presence of both the physician and the scientist in the room served to provide content expertise on clinical and basic science, and to bring clinical relevance to the basic science material. The presence of the clinician in the room aids in the students' appreciation of the core concepts. The cases and questions provided in the learning materials significantly helped students understand how aspects of basic science (pharmacokinetics) are applicable to clinical practice.


McMahon K. Geriatric pharmacology. MedEdPORTAL Publications. 2005;1:124.

Contains time-sensitive information that will likely be inaccurate, obsolete, or irrelevant by July 09, 2010

Educational Objectives

By the end of this session, learners will be able to:

  1. Explain how age-related decline in organ function impacts pharmacokinetics, with specific emphasis on the kidneys, liver, blood volume and skeletal muscle.
  2. Describe age-related concerns for prescribing digoxin, warfarin, NSAIDS, sedatives/hypnotics, and drugs with anticholinergics effects.
  3. Explain how polypharmacology, including over-the-counter medications, can cause changes in cognitive and physical function, and affect the frequency of adverse events in geriatric populations.
  4. Describe how pathologies commonly seen in geriatric populations can lead to predictable complications.
  5. Develop the necessary skills to avoid overmedication of the elderly.
  6. Manage clinical pathologies or drug-related problems in geriatric individuals.


  • Aging, Toxicology, Pharmacokinetics, Polypharmacy, Drug Therapy, Elderly, TBL, Team-Based Learning

Prior Scholarly Dissemination

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