TitleAdults aging 'with' and 'into' paralysis: Epidemiological analyses of demography and health.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsDixon-Ibarra, A, Krahn, GL, Fredine, H, Cahill, A, Jenkins, S
JournalDisabil Health J
Volume9
Issue4
Pagination575-83
Date Published10/2016
ISSN1876-7583
KeywordsActivities of Daily Living, Adult, Age of Onset, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Aging, Chronic Disease, Cross-Sectional Studies, Disabled Persons, Family Characteristics, Female, Health Status, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Paralysis, Self Report, Surveys and Questionnaires
Abstract
 

BACKGROUND: Survival for many individuals with paralysis is increasing, making this population a larger subset of the aging population (Molton, & Jensen, 2010). Yet little is known about the demographics and health of this population (Freedman, 2014).

OBJECTIVE: This study is one of the first evaluations of the differences in etiology, sociodemographic and health characteristics (i.e., health status, chronic, and secondary and medical conditions) of adults aging with versus into disability.

METHODS: A cross sectional epidemiological study was performed using secondary data from a nationally representative sample of adults with paralysis. The National Paralysis Survey is a random digit-dial survey of over 70,000 households. Weighted descriptive and regression analyses were conducted.

RESULTS: Eighty percent of those aging with paralysis had disabilities for 40+ years. They showed significantly better self-reported health status, and a trend for more secondary and medical conditions. Those aging into paralysis had more chronic diseases.

CONCLUSIONS: Differences are evident between those aging with vs. into paralysis. These findings suggest that differentiating subgroups of older adults with disabilities by onset of disability makes disability and health information more actionable for programs and policies. Additional studies to explore the intersection of aging and disability onset across adulthood could increase our understanding of the dynamics of aging in persons with early and later onset disabilities.

DOI10.1016/j.dhjo.2016.06.003
Alternate JournalDisabil Health J
PubMed ID27461727