Self-rated health and morbidity onset among late midlife U.S. Adults

TitleSelf-rated health and morbidity onset among late midlife U.S. Adults
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsLatham, K, Peek, CW
JournalThe journals of gerontology. Series B, Psychological sciences and social sciences
KeywordsDemographics, Health Conditions and Status

Although self-rated health (SRH) is recognized as a strong and consistent predictor of mortality and functional health decline, there are relatively few studies examining SRH as a predictor of morbidity. This study examines the capacity of SRH to predict the onset of chronic disease among the late midlife population (ages 51-61 years). Utilizing the first 9 waves (1992-2008) of the Health and Retirement Study, event history analysis was used to estimate the effect of SRH on incidence of 6 major chronic diseases (coronary heart disease, diabetes, stroke, lung disease, arthritis, and cancer) among those who reported none of these conditions at baseline (N = 4,770). SRH was a significant predictor of onset of any chronic condition and all specific chronic conditions excluding cancer. The effect was particularly pronounced for stroke. This research provides the strongest and most comprehensive evidence to date of the relationship between SRH and incident morbidity.

Endnote Keywords

Middle age/Mortality/Chronic illnesses/Morbidity/Self assessed health/Chronic Disease/Stroke

Endnote ID


Citation Key7921
PubMed ID23197340
PubMed Central IDPMC3605944