Virus Infections in Older People

Roy Soiza, Chiara Scicluna, Sana Bilal

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Older people are more prone to viral infections, and often have worse outcomes. This was well demonstrated during the COVID-19 pandemic, where a disproportionate number of deaths occurred in the oldest and frailest people. The assessment of the older person with a viral infection is complicated by the high prevalence of multiple comorbidities and sensory or cognitive impairment.
They often present with common geriatric syndromes such as falls or delirium, rather than the more typical features of a viral illness in younger people. Comprehensive geriatric assessment by a specialist multidisciplinary team is the gold standard of management, as viral illness is unlikely to present in isolation of other healthcare needs. We discuss the presentation, diagnosis, prevention, and management of common viral infections—respiratory syncytial virus, coronavirus, norovirus, influenza, hepatitis, herpes, and dengue viruses—with special consideration of infections in the older patient.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBiochemistry and Cell Biology of Ageing
Subtitle of host publicationPart IV, Clinical Science
EditorsRobin Harris
PublisherSpringer Nature
ISBN (Print)978-3-031-26575-4
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 11 Feb 2023


  • Coronavirus
  • CoVID-19
  • Diagnosis
  • Hepatitis
  • infection
  • Influenza
  • Norovirus
  • Senescence
  • Treatment
  • Virology


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