(HealthDay News) – For older adults, multiple chronic conditions are associated with worse health in terms of activities of daily living and health-related quality of life, according to a study published Sept. 26 in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Preventing Chronic Disease.
John P. Barile, PhD, from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, and colleagues used data from 27,334 participants in the Medicare Health Outcomes Survey to assess longitudinal associations between multiple chronic conditions and limitations in activities of daily living and health-related quality of life in older adults (≥65 years) from 2004–2006.
The researchers found that there was an independent association for the numbers of chronic conditions at baseline and after two years of follow-up with more limitations in activities of daily living at follow-up. In addition, there was a correlation between more limitations in activities of daily living at two-year follow-up with worse health-related quality of life during follow-up. Changes in limitations in activities of daily living mediated the correlation between multiple chronic conditions and indices of health-related quality of life.
“Public health practitioners should consider addressing classes of multiple chronic conditions by using interventions designed to reduce the emergence of multiple chronic conditions, such as physical activity, reductions in smoking rates, and improved and coordinated access to health care services,” the authors write.