Case report of zinc deficiency in an elderly woman

N. J. Stiles, M. G. Boosalis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Zinc deficiency is not an uncommon nutritional disorder in the elderly. It should be suspected in patients who have conditions associated with zinc deficiency or who have one of the potential causes of zinc deficiency. A low serum-zinc level indicates zinc deficiency unless an acute phase response is present. The acute-phase response should be suspected in a patient with an acute illness. A C-reactive protein level is helpful in identifying the acute-phase response. Our initial treatment of zinc deficiency centers on increasing dietary zinc. Often, however, because of other common problems of geriatric patients such as dementia or depression, the patient is unable to alter his or her diet. Then, zinc supplementation may be required. Copper, iron, and lipoprotein status should be monitored if long-term zinc supplementation is needed because they may be effected by the zinc supplementation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-42
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Laboratory Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (all)


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