Relationship between multimorbidity, functional limitation, and quality of life among middle-aged and older adults: findings from the longitudinal analysis of the 2013–2020 Survey of Health, Ageing, and Retirement in Europe (SHARE)

Piotr Wilk, Maria Ruiz-Castell, Saverio Stranges, Torsten Bohn*, Guy Fagherazzi, Kathryn Nicholson, Valérie Moran, Tatjana T. Makovski, Maria Noel Pi Alperin, Maurice P. Zeegers, Hanen Samouda

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: The increased burden of multimorbidity is restricting individuals’ ability to live autonomously, leading to a poorer quality of life. This study estimated trajectories of functional limitation and quality of life among middle-aged (ages 50 to 64 years) and older (aged 65 years and older) individuals with and without multimorbidity. We also assessed differences in the relationship between these two trajectories by multimorbidity status and separately for each age cohort. Methods: Data originated from the Survey of Health, Ageing, and Retirement in Europe (SHARE). In Luxembourg, data were obtained between 2013 and 2020, involving 1,585 respondents ≥ 50 years of age. Multimorbidity was defined as a self-reported diagnosis of two or more out of 16 chronic conditions; functional limitation was assessed by a combined (Instrumental) Activities of Daily Living (ADL/IADLI) scale; and to measure quality of life, we used the Control, Autonomy, Self-Realization, and Pleasure (CASP-12) scale. Latent growth curve modelling techniques were used to conduct the analysis where repeated measures of quality of life and functional limitation were treated as continuous and zero-inflated count variables, respectively. The model was assessed separately in each age cohort, controlling for the baseline covariates, and the estimates from the two cohorts were presented as components of a synthetic cohort covering the life course from the age of 50. Results: Middle-aged and older adults living with multimorbidity experienced poorer quality of life throughout the life course and were at a higher risk of functional limitation than those without multimorbidity. At baseline, functional limitation had a negative impact on quality of life. Furthermore, among middle-aged adults without multimorbidity and older adults with multimorbidity, an increase in the number of functional limitations led to a decline in quality of life. These results imply that the impact of multimorbidity on functional limitation and quality of life may vary across the life course. Conclusion: Using novel methodological techniques, this study contributes to a better understanding of the longitudinal relationship between functional limitation and quality of life among individuals with and without multimorbidity and how this relationship changes across the life course. Our findings suggest that lowering the risk of having multimorbidity can decrease functional limitation and increase quality of life.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)169-181
JournalQuality of Life Research
Volume33
Issue number1
Early online date30 Sept 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2024

Keywords

  • Ageing
  • Elderly
  • Latent growth curve
  • Longitudinal study
  • Multimorbidity
  • Quality of life
  • SHARE

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