I've often been jealous of my veterinary colleagues who get to use the term "lame" to describe a variety of physical illness/diseases that usually afflict older animals.
There's finally a human equivalent: Frail.
Frailty is an important medical syndrome that occurs as a result of a range of diseases and medical conditions. A consensus group agreed on the following: it has multiple causes and contributors and is characterized by diminished strength, endurance, and reduced physiologic function that increase an individual’s vulnerability for developing increased dependency and/or death.
Two commonly used and validated tools are:
The FRAIL tool:
The FRAIL tool asks five questions and those who answer yes to at least three likely are frail.
· Fatigue: Are you fatigued?
· Resistance: Do you have difficulty walking up one flight of steps?
· Aerobic: Are you unable to walk at least one block?
· Illness: Do you have more than five illnesses?
· Loss of weight: Have you lost more than 5 percent of your weight in the past six months?
And the Clinical Frailty Scale:
The four things that are currently identified as being able to potentially improve physical frailty include exercise, protein-calorie supplementation, Vitamin D (when low), and the reduction of polypharmacy.