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Frailty in Middle-Aged With Multimorbidity Tied to Mortality

Last Updated: August 23, 2018.

For middle-aged individuals with multimorbidity, frailty is significantly associated with mortality, according to a study published in the July issue of The Lancet Public Health.

THURSDAY, Aug. 23, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- For middle-aged individuals with multimorbidity, frailty is significantly associated with mortality, according to a study published in the July issue of The Lancet Public Health.

Peter Hanlon, from the University of Glasgow in the United Kingdom, and colleagues used data from the U.K. Biobank to examine the correlation between frailty, multimorbidity, specific long-term conditions, and mortality in a middle-aged and older aged population. A total of 493,737 participants aged 37 to 73 years were included in the study.

The researchers found that 3 percent of participants were considered frail, 38 percent pre-frail, and 59 percent not frail. There was a significant correlation for frailty with multimorbidity (prevalence, 18 percent in those with four or more long-term conditions: odds ratio, 27.1), socioeconomic deprivation, smoking, obesity, and infrequent alcohol consumption. Multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, connective tissue disease, and diabetes were the top five long-term conditions associated with frailty (odds ratios, 15.3, 12.9, 5.6, 5.4, and 5, respectively). After adjustment for confounders, pre-frailty and frailty were significantly associated with mortality for all age strata in men and women (except for women aged 37 to 45 years).

"Efforts to identify, manage, and prevent frailty should include middle-aged individuals with multimorbidity, in whom frailty is significantly associated with mortality, even after adjustment for number of long-term conditions, sociodemographics, and lifestyle," the authors write.

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