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Hierarchy and Speed of Loss in Physical Functioning: A Comparison Across Older U.S. and English Men and Women

Bendayan, R; Cooper, R; Wloch, E; Hofer, SM; Piccinin, AM; Muniz-Terrera, G; (2016) Hierarchy and Speed of Loss in Physical Functioning: A Comparison Across Older U.S. and English Men and Women. The Journals of Gerontology: Series A 10.1093/gerona/glw209. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: We aimed to identify the hierarchy of rates of decline in 16 physical functioning measures in U.S. and English samples, using a systematic and integrative coordinated data analysis approach. METHODS: The U.S. sample consisted of 13,612 Health and Retirement Study participants, and the English sample consisted of 5,301 English Longitudinal Study of Ageing participants. Functional loss was ascertained using self-reported difficulties performing 6 activities of daily living and 10 mobility tasks. The variables were standardized, rates of decline were computed, and mean rates of decline were ranked. Mann–Whitney U tests were performed to compare rates of decline between studies. RESULTS: In both studies, the rates of decline followed a similar pattern; difficulty with eating was the activity that showed the slowest decline and climbing several flights of stairs and stooping, kneeling, or crouching the fastest declines. There were statistical differences in the speed of decline in all 16 measures between countries. American women had steeper declines in 10 of the measures than English women. Similar differences were found between American and English men. CONCLUSIONS: Reporting difficulties climbing several flights of stairs without resting, and stooping, kneeling, or crouching are the first indicators of functional loss reported in both populations.

Type: Article
Title: Hierarchy and Speed of Loss in Physical Functioning: A Comparison Across Older U.S. and English Men and Women
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/gerona/glw209
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/gerona/glw209
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0) (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/), which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Activities of daily living; Aging; Decline; Mobility
UCL classification: UCL
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1521993
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