Limited prospective data exist on how living arrangements are associated with change in functional health.
This study evaluated whether elderly women living alone were less likely to experience functional decline when compared with women who lived with others.
A total of 619 community-dwelling, white women from Baltimore, Maryland, aged 65-99 years at baseline were questioned annually from 1984 to 1986.
Functional health was measured as the sum of limitations in seven physical and seven instrumental activities of daily living (Instrumental ADL).
A total of 148 women experienced functional decline over the 2 years, primarily as a deterioration in Instrumental ADL.
The association between living arrangement and change in Instrumental ADL depended on the level of physical impairment.
Among women without severe impairment, Instrumental ADL deterioration was significantly less for those living alone compared with those living with spouses (odds ratio (OR)=0.60,95% confidence interval (Cl) 0.45-0.92) or nonspouse others (OR=0.62,95% Cl 0.45-0.96).
For women with severe impairment, however, those living alone had a greater decline in Instrumental ADL, especially when compared with those living with nonspouse others (OR=5.13,95% Cl 1.23-21.28).
These results suggest that, unless severely physically impaired, women living independently have less deterioration in functional health when compared with peers in alternate living arrangements.
Mots-clés Pascal : Activité, Vie quotidienne, Vieillard, Homme, Etat sanitaire, Dépistage, Prospective, Facteur sociodémographique, Corrélation, Evaluation, Etablissement troisième âge, Organisation santé, Prévention
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Activity, Daily living, Elderly, Human, Health status, Medical screening, Prospective, Sociodemographic factor, Correlation, Evaluation, Homes for the aged, Public health organization, Prevention
Notice produite par :
Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 98-0195880
Code Inist : 002B30A03B. Création : 11/09/1998.