Consequences of Aging
It is hard to enumerate the general consequences of aging in different animals. Gradual loss of reproductive ability, neuromuscular coordination and not sufficient assimilation to compensate for wear and tear are possibly the most general features correlated with aging. Human aging is characterized by some additional features like greying hair, loss of permanent teeth, changes (mainly loss of elasticity) in the dermis leading to the development of wrinkles, and diminished acuity of sense organs. A common loss of strength as indicated by the hand grip is as well correlated with aging. The vital capacity of lungs decreases and blood pressure increases through age. Bones are markedly affected by aging. The total loss of skeletal weight amounts to about 15% between youth and old age. In post-menopausal women the loss of skeletal weight is more rapid as compared to in men of comparable age. Beyond the age of 65 both sexes experience increased bone loss. This is because of a progressive malabsorption of calcium. This is why aged persons are prone to sustain fractures simply.