Document Detail

Associations of changes in exercise level with subsequent disability among seniors: a 16-year longitudinal study.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16456200     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: The effect of changes in physical exercise on progression of musculoskeletal disability in seniors has rarely been studied. METHODS: We studied a prospective cohort annually from 1984 to 2000 using the Health Assessment Questionnaire Disability Index (HAQ-DI). The cohort included 549 participants, 73% men, with average end-of-study age of 74 years. At baseline and at the end of the study, participants were classified as "High" or "Low" vigorous exercisers using a cut-point of 60 min/wk. Four groups were formed: "Sedentary" (Low-->Low; N = 71), "Exercise Increasers" (Low-->High; N = 27), "Exercise Decreasers" (High-->Low; N = 73), and "Exercisers" (High-->High; N = 378). The primary dependent variable was change in HAQ-DI score (scored 0-3) from 1984 to 2000. Multivariate statistical adjustments using analysis of covariance included age, gender, and changes in three risk factors, body mass index, smoking status, and number of comorbid conditions. Participants also prospectively provided reasons for exercise changes. RESULTS: At baseline, Sedentary and Increasers averaged little exercise (16 and 22 exercise min/wk), whereas Exercisers and Decreasers averaged over 10 times more (285 and 212 exercise min/wk; p <.001). All groups had low initial HAQ-DI scores, ranging from 0.03 to 0.08. Increasers and Exercisers achieved the smallest increments in HAQ-DI score (0.17 and 0.11) over 16 years, whereas Decreasers and Sedentary fared more poorly (increments 0.27 and 0.37). Changes in HAQ-DI score for Increasers compared to Sedentary were significantly more favorable (p <.05) even after multivariate statistical adjustment. CONCLUSIONS: Inactive participants who increased exercise achieved excellent end-of-study values with increments in disability similar to those participants who were more active throughout. These results suggest a beneficial effect of exercise, even when begun later in life, on postponement of disability.
David R Berk; Helen B Hubert; James F Fries
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The journals of gerontology. Series A, Biological sciences and medical sciences     Volume:  61     ISSN:  1079-5006     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Gerontol. A Biol. Sci. Med. Sci.     Publication Date:  2006 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2006-02-03     Completed Date:  2006-04-04     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9502837     Medline TA:  J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  97-102     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
Department of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305-5755, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Disabled Persons
Disease Progression
Longitudinal Studies
Middle Aged
Musculoskeletal Diseases / prevention & control*
Prospective Studies
Time Factors
Grant Support

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