Elderhood by Louise Aronson


As revelatory as Atul Gawande's Being Mortal, physician and award-winning author Louise Aronson's Elderhood is an essential, empathetic look at a vital but often disparaged stage of life.For more than 5,000 years, "old" has been defined as beginning between the ages of 60 and 70. That means most people alive today will spend more years in elderhood than in childhood, and many will be elders for 40 years or more. Yet at the very moment that humans...

Details Elderhood

Release DateJun 11th, 2019
PublisherBloomsbury Publishing
GenreNonfiction, Science, Health, Medical, Medicine

Reviews Elderhood

  • Elyse Walters
    Medicine todayhas become as much about prevention as well as treatment. It’s at least moving in that direction with many medical doctors today - re- educating themselves in Functional medicine — treating the whole person - looking for root causes rather than treatment alone. It was only when Louise Aronson, a medical doctor herself - ( beginning in 1992), started having health problems in 2015 - face-to-face with the likelihood of ongoing dis...
  • Jill
    Anyone who is already old, caring for someone old, or intending to grow old in the near or distant future needs to read this book. Now! And that not only includes readers; it also includes policy-makers.Elderhood is not a “how-to” book that treads over the same old tired ground. Rather, it’s a book that tackles why aging must be understood and redefined and why the medical establishment’s usual goals of saving lives and curing disease is ...
  • Canadian
    At over 450 pages, ELDERHOOD, by San Francisco geriatrician Louise Aronson, is a big book. It’s an ambitious one, too. In the opening pages, the author states her intention to highlight relevant information from many disciplines about the last of the three acts in a human life: old age. (Childhood and adulthood are acts one and two respectively.) As the pages turn, several key themes emerge. One is that geriatrics (as a medical specialty) lags ...
  • Bob H
    This is a sensitively written account of Dr. Aronson's career in geriatrics -- an autobiography centered on her life experience and medical career -- and a critique of geriatrics, US medicine generally and of how our society deals with aging. Along the way, she shows us a medical system almost caste-ridden in its hierarchy of specialties, in which geriatrics is low-rated, as well as US medicine's fragmented approach to patients, funding, medical ...
  • Kristine
    Elderhood by Louise Aronson is a free NetGalley ebook that I read in late April.Oof, it looks quite deep from the chapter names in the table of contents, though I’d eventually learn that these didn’t bear much relevance on the stories being told as much as just marking where one story stopped and another began (i.e. you could pretty much just number the chapters, instead of name them so philosophically). Elderhood presented as being the latte...
  • Julia Nock
    This is a wonderful book about the intersection of the later stages of life, medicine, and society. Just as children are not simply, as once thought, small adults, but a time of life with its own developmental stages and needs, so aging is an articulated time of life with a broad spectrum of stages and a complex diversity of presentation. Aronson, a geriatrician, uses stories of patients, her own family, and her path in medical training and pract...
  • Donna
    Excellent, conversational in tone, and erudite in execution. Filled with examples of how aging patients are viewed and devalued by the medical establishment. Should be required reading for anyone with aging parents and definitely medical school students who won't have time to read it.
  • Keeley
    Louise Aronson tackles the rampant ageism that is alive and well in the medical field in the US today. She covers how old age has been defined historically and how it has morphed to represent fear and death in current western society. She brilliantly knocks down ageist stereotypes not only in the medical field, but in society as a whole. Elderhood is a collection of stories from Aronson's career working as a geriatrician beginning with her traini...
  • Jill Meyer
    I'll admit I was a bit disappointed in Dr Louise Aronson's new book, "Elderhood: Medicine, Society, and Life's Third Act". I thought it would be a bit more practical and cover specific topics about aging. Instead, the book is really a series of essays about Dr Aronson's introduction and then choice to specialise in gerontology. Now, that's not a bad direction for a book, and Dr Aronson's a pretty good writer. I enjoyed her writing on the various ...
  • Karen
    Overall I liked this book. Aronson is a good writer, and I felt that the stories of her patients were interesting. I felt I learned quite a bit. She points out the problems of our health care system, but she didn't go quite far as I would have liked. I would have liked more practical ways to help our aging population, but maybe that needs to be a sequel.
  • Angie Boyter
    Rather disappointingSee my Amazon Vine review: https://www.amazon.com/review/R3M0S5M...
  • Gaby
    I find myself sharing stories from Elderhood with friends and family. Elderhood discusses how the lack of resources and research placed on the treatment of older patients leads to uneven and inadequate medical treatment. The is gap is attributable to doctors, hospitals, drug companies, etc but the dangers of errors - big and small - are almost incalculable. I found Aronson's Elderhood is as engrossing and as informative as Mukerjee's Emperor of A...
  • Debra Robert
    This bk is not terribly interesting unless you’re a doctor. There are a few main ideas that are important to read about and know. 1. Older adults are generally disregarded. 2. Health care is not not adequate for older adults. 3. People are more contact in the last stages of their lives. 4. Respect not given for old people - call yourself and others “Elder” as that word seems like it conjures up more respect. 5. Watch out if you want to put ...
  • Bill
    Anyone who is over 65 or knows someone closely who is in that category needs to read this book. Written by a doctor who specializes in the elderly, it is extremely interesting and easy to read. Along with Atul Gawande’s Being Mortal, it provides insights into how senior citizens live and think, and offers solutions to the many conditions that make life difficult as people age.Highly recommended.
  • Lillian
    Louise Aronson makes a valiant effort to give elders a voice and a presence but truly there is no new information here from Atul Gwande's Being Mortal. Aronson's book could have benefited from a lot less memoir and more focus on the issue.Probably about 150 pages longer than it need be.
  • Ellen
    What a powerful portrait of all the angles of ageing. A must-read for all who hope to age... at all.
  • Barbara (The Bibliophage)
    Originally published on my book blog, TheBibliophage.com.Louise Aronson subtitles Elderhood with the following: Redefining Aging, Transforming Medicine, Reimagining Life. I submit that she focuses primarily on the second of these topics, rather than the other two. And that makes sense because she has many years of experience as a geriatric physician, much of it in a house calls practice.I’m a former caregiver to my now deceased parents and a pe...
  • Ellyn Lem
    This must be my summer of great books since I don't remember when I have read so many "five star" ones. Louise Aronson is a geriatrician, and I have been waiting for this book of hers to come out for a while now after I read an excellent op-ed piece she wrote for the NY Times about the importance in acknowledging variance in older adults. This book builds on that premise, but does so much more. First, Aronson includes a number of vignettes of the...