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Multimorbidity patterns, all-cause mortality and healthy aging in older English adults: Results from the English Longitudinal Study of Aging

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Yu-Tzu WuORCiD, Professor Matthew Prina



© 2020 The Authors. Geriatrics & Gerontology International published by John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd on behalf of Japan Geriatrics Society. Aim: This study aimed to investigate the relationships between multimorbidity, healthy aging and mortality. Methods: Using data from 9171 individuals aged ≥50 years at wave 2 and mortality data at wave 5 of the English Longitudinal Study of Aging, a multiple linear regression model and a Cox proportional hazards model were used to investigate how multimorbidity patterns (identified as cardiorespiratory/arthritis/cataracts, metabolic and relatively healthy) were associated with a composite index of healthy aging (derived from 41 intrinsic capacity and functional ability items) and with mortality. Results: A total of 60% of the sample with multimorbidity had a moderate or high level of healthy aging. Both the cardiorespiratory/arthritis/cataracts group (n = 1826) and the metabolic group (n = 844) were negatively associated with healthy aging. The expected healthy aging index score decreased by 5.81 points (95% CI −6.69, −4.92) for the first group, and by 2.39 points (95% CI −3.54, −1.24) for the latter group. Only the cardiorespiratory/arthritis/cataracts group was positively associated with mortality. The risk of death for this group was 1.27-fold (95% CI: 1.14, 1.43) than the relatively healthy group. The relationship between multimorbidity patterns and mortality did not differ when considering levels of healthy aging. Conclusions: Although it is not impossible for people with multimorbidity to age healthily, those with the most complex combination of diseases are at higher risk of death and have lower levels of healthy aging. Geriatr Gerontol Int 2020; 20: 1126–1132.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Nguyen H, Wu Y-T, Dregan A, Vitoratou S, Chua K-C, Prina AM

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Geriatrics and Gerontology International

Year: 2020

Volume: 20

Issue: 12

Pages: 1126-1132

Print publication date: 01/12/2020

Online publication date: 08/10/2020

Acceptance date: 15/09/2020

Date deposited: 14/08/2023

ISSN (print): 1444-1586

ISSN (electronic): 1447-0594

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Ltd


DOI: 10.1111/ggi.14051

PubMed id: 33030261


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Funder referenceFunder name
Ageing Trajectories of Health: Longitudinal Opportunities and Synergies (ATHLOS) project
Biomedical Research Centre for Mental Health at South London
King’s College London
Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust