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PD occurs most frequently among those aged 60 and older; possesses a somewhat sex-blind prevalence; and stimulates considerable stress among its sufferers, who must contend with a lifetime of medication use and symptom-related assaults to their identity maintenance.This article, drawing on data collected from male and female PD sufferers (Solimeo, in press), explores how a mixed-methods approach to male/female differences can demonstrate the value of adding gender to studies of sex differences.

Although aging is certainly a female domain, whereby a larger proportion of caregivers and those who survive into older age are women, the experiences of men as they age are increasingly regarded as products of a gendered life course (Calasanti, 2004; Fleming, 1999; Lorber & Moore, 2002; Thompson, 1994).Differences in men's and women's experiences are products of both biological and social factors; they are manifestations of both the biologically based variable sex and the socioculturally based construct of gender.Although such concepts are intrinsically related, as evidenced by rich scholarship on transgender communities (see Ekins & King, 1999), research on sex and gender can be delineated in part by considering whether male/female differences are treated as binary, biologically determined variables or flexible sites of meaning making.These data imply that providers must look beyond symptomatology to the gendered saliency of particular somatic phenomena.AGING is a biopsychosocial process made meaningful by its position within a larger cultural and historical context.

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