Describe the effects of ageing on the cardiovascular system.
Many candidates described the pathological processes which might affect the aging heart
rather than the physiological ones. Recognition that aging reduces cardiovascular reserve followed up with an outline of the effects of aging on the heart, the vasculature, endothelial function and the conducting system would be rewarded with a good mark.Few answers quantified the decrease of cardiac output with age and only even fewer ventured into the contribution of ventricular filling by atrial systole. No answer discussed endothelial changes with aging. Some answers were repetitious. Some answers included a significant discussion of information that was not asked for (Laplace law/Poiseuille's law).