Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Basic physical capability can predict mortality in later life

Date:
September 10, 2010
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
People who are better at simple physical acts such as gripping, walking, rising from a chair and balancing on one leg are more likely to live longer, according to a new study.

People who are better at simple physical acts such as gripping, walking, rising from a chair and balancing on one leg are more likely to live longer, according to a new study published online in the British Medical Journal.

Measures of physical capability, such as grip strength, walking speed, chair rising time and standing balance ability, can predict mortality in older people living in the community, UK researchers found.

These measures are related to a person's ability to perform everyday tasks. There is growing interest in using such measures as simple screening tools to identify people who might benefit from targeted interventions such as strength training.

Researchers from the MRC Unit for Lifelong Health and Ageing reviewed 57 studies and found 28 that looked at physical capabilities in people of any age and recorded subsequent mortality. They excluded studies of people in institutions such as hospitals and care homes.

Most of those study authors were contacted by the research team and asked to complete a standardised results table and ultimately, after also obtaining unpublished results from five other studies, 33 sets of results were collated and included in the review.

The team found that, although there was some variation between studies, there was consistent evidence of associations between all four measures of physical capability and mortality -- people who performed less well in these tests had a consistently higher risk of death.

From 14 studies (including 53,476 participants) that dealt with grip strength, the death rate among the weakest people was 1.67 times greater than among the strongest people, after taking age, sex, and body size into account.

From five studies (including 14,692 participants) that dealt with walking speed, the death rate among people who were slowest was 2.87 times greater than among the people who were fastest, after similar adjustments.

Five studies (including 28,036 people) that dealt with chair rising showed that the death rate of people who were the slowest was almost twice the rate of people who were fastest at this physical task.

Most of the studies were carried out amongst older people, but the association of grip strength with mortality was also found in younger populations.

The authors say that this review has highlighted the paucity of studies in this field in younger populations, and they also call for more research to examine the associations between changes in capability with age and mortality, as a steep decline in physical capability may be a better predictor of mortality than is the absolute level at a single point in time.

They conclude: "Objective measures of physical capability are predictors of all cause mortality in older community dwelling populations. Such measures may therefore provide useful tools for identifying older people at higher risk of death."



Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Rachel Cooper, Diana Kuh, Rebecca Hardy, Mortality Review Group, on behalf of the FALCon and HALCyon study teams. Research: Objectively measured physical capability levels and mortality: Systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ, 2010; 341: c4467 DOI: 10.1136/bmj.c4467

Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Basic physical capability can predict mortality in later life." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 September 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100909193401.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2010, September 10). Basic physical capability can predict mortality in later life. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100909193401.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Basic physical capability can predict mortality in later life." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100909193401.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

AFP (July 24, 2014) America's death penalty debate raged Thursday after it took nearly two hours for Arizona to execute a prisoner who lost a Supreme Court battle challenging the experimental lethal drug cocktail. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) A study by German researchers claims watching TV while you're stressed out can make you feel guilty and like a failure. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins