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Journal Article

Sex differences in the level and rate of change of physical function and grip strength in the Danish 1905-cohort study

Oksuzyan, A., Maier, H., McGue, M., Vaupel, J. W., Christensen, K.

Journal of Aging and Health, 22:5, 589-610 (2010)

DOI:10.1177/0898264310366752

Keywords: Denmark, disability, health, life span, mortality, old age, sex differentials

Abstract

Objectives: The study was conducted to examine sex differences in the initial level and rate-of-change in physical function and grip strength. Methods: The baseline survey included 2,262 Danes born in 1905 and alive in 1998 and followed-up in 2000, 2003 and 2005. Hence, we fully used the power of having a cohort with multiple assessments in late life and virtually complete follow-up of lifespan (through December 2008). Latent growth curve modeling was used. Results: Men had higher initial levels and rates-of-decline in strength score and grip strength. Lifespan was positively correlated with intercepts and slopes. Discussion: The Danish data suggest that the longest living individuals have higher initial levels of strength score and grip strength and smaller rate-of-change. It suggests also that the initial level of strength score and grip strength was more predictive of mortality than the rate-of-change was, and the predictive effects were similar in men and women.

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