Effect of Physical Activity on Functional Status among Older Middle-Age Adults with Arthritis

TitleEffect of Physical Activity on Functional Status among Older Middle-Age Adults with Arthritis
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsFeinglass, J, Thompson, JA, He, X, Witt, WP, Chang, RW, Baker, DW
JournalArthritis Care and Research
Call Numberpubs_2005_Feinglass_etal.pdf
KeywordsHealth Conditions and Status

Objective. To determine the effect of leisure time and work-related physical activity on changes in physical functioning among 3,554 nationally representative survey respondents, ages 53 63 years in 1994, with arthritis and joint symptoms, interviewed in the Health and Retirement Study (HRS). Methods. In 1992 1994, light and vigorous exercise items were empirically categorized into recommended, insufficient, and inactive leisure time physical activity levels using data from the HRS. Leisure and work-related physical activity levels in 1994 were used to predict 1996 functional decline or improvement, controlling for baseline functional difficulties, health status, sociodemographic characteristics, and behavioral risk factors. Results. Whereas 29.7 of respondents reported functional declines in 1996, 38.6 of those with baseline difficulties in 1994 reported improvement. Compared with inactive respondents, recommended and insufficient leisure time physical activity were equally protective against functional decline (odds ratio OR 0.59 and 0.62, respectively; P 0.0001). Higher levels of physical activity were also modestly associated with functional improvement among respondents with baseline functional difficulties (OR 1.47, P 0.05 and OR 1.45, P 0.01, respectively). Work-related physical activity was not a significant predictor of decline or improvement. Conclusion. Given the high prevalence of arthritis, even modest increases in rates of lifestyle physical activity among older adults could make a substantial contribution to disability-free life expectancy.

Endnote Keywords


Endnote ID


Citation Key7037