growth were reports on infectious disease and osteoporosis in the aged. Social and psychological studies, health services delivery research, and pharmacology were well represented in both years, showing a modest increase in the number of publications between 1983 and 1987. Examination of the social and behavioral literature showed a high level of interest in geriatrics in 1983, but no striking change in the rate of publication was noted in the subsequent four years.

A further observation by the ISI review was that the increase in studies on aging involved many clearly defined areas of geriatric interest (e.g., studies of geriatric syndromes) with contributions made by many different fields of research (internal medicine, neurology, molecular biology, sociology, psychology). This observation demonstrates both the wide interest in the investigation of aging and the emergence of a body of information and research techniques that is focused on age-related topics.

Until recently, as the ISI findings indicated, aging studies not reported in publications clearly identified as focused on aging have tended to appear in professional journals devoted to behavioral and social science or to health services delivery research, with few reports appearing in medical and other scientific publications. That this trend has changed is illustrated, if not proven, by the increase between 1983 and 1987 in age-related studies reported in the selected medical and scientific journals shown in Table 7-4.

Although these peer-reviewed journals showed a more than 150 percent increase in publication of articles on research in aging between 1983 and 1987, further study is necessary to establish the presence of a significant trend. Of interest is the quadrupling of articles on aging in the neurology literature. During the period 1983 to 1987 there was also a significant increase in the number of journals devoted to the study of aging.

No support was listed for 16 percent of papers on age-related research in 1987; presumably, this support was provided by the institution of affiliation of the investigators. Among remaining papers, citations of support were divided as follows: government, 45 percent; foundations, 30 percent; foreign sources, 20 percent; and corporations, 5 percent.


A 1980 study indicated that 7,000 to 10,300 geriatricians would be needed by the year 1990 (Kane et al., 1980). Based on staffing of 3 to 5 full-time faculty per teaching hospital and medical school, the

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