Logo of amjphAmerican Journal of Public Health Web SiteAmerican Public Health Association Web SiteSubmissionsSubscriptionsAbout Us
Am J Public Health. 1991 January; 81(1): 63–68.
PMCID: PMC1404917

Predictors of successful aging: a twelve-year study of Manitoba elderly.


In Manitoba, Canada, a representative cohort of elderly individuals ages 65 to 84 (n = 3,573) were interviewed in 1971 and the survivors of this cohort were reinterviewed in 1983. This analysis assesses the determinants of successful aging--whether or not an individual will live to an advanced age, continue to function well at home, and remain mentally alert. Over 100 separate indicators of demographic and socio-economic status, social supports, health and mental status in 1971 were available as potential predictors of successful aging. Indicators of access to health care over the period 1970-82 and indicators of diseases over this period were also available as predictors. Those who aged successfully were shown to have greater satisfaction with life in 1983 and to have made fewer demands on the health care system than those who aged less well. Despite the large number of potential predictors of successful aging which were examined, only age, four measures of health status, two measures of mental status, and not having one's spouse die or enter a nursing home were shown to be predictive of successful aging.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (4.1M), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Rowe JW. John W. Rowe, MD: seeking the keys to successful aging. Interview by Richard L. Peck. Geriatrics. 1987 May;42(5):99–100. [PubMed]
  • Mossey JM, Havens B, Roos NP, Shapiro E. The Manitoba longitudinal study on aging: description and methods. Gerontologist. 1981 Oct;21(5):551–558. [PubMed]
  • Roos LL, Jr, Roos NP, Cageorge SM, Nicol JP. How good are the data? Reliability of one health care data bank. Med Care. 1982 Mar;20(3):266–276. [PubMed]
  • Roos LL, Sharp SM, Wajda A. Assessing data quality: a computerized approach. Soc Sci Med. 1989;28(2):175–182. [PubMed]
  • Roos NP, Shapiro E, Tate R. Does a small minority of elderly account for a majority of health care expenditures? A sixteen-year perspective. Milbank Q. 1989;67(3-4):347–369. [PubMed]
  • Detsky AS, Stacey SR, Bombardier C. The effectiveness of a regulatory strategy in containing hospital costs. The Ontario experience, 1967-1981. N Engl J Med. 1983 Jul 21;309(3):151–159. [PubMed]
  • Guralnik JM, Kaplan GA. Predictors of healthy aging: prospective evidence from the Alameda County study. Am J Public Health. 1989 Jun;79(6):703–708. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Wilkins R, Adams OB. Health expectancy in Canada, late 1970s: demographic, regional, and social dimensions. Am J Public Health. 1983 Sep;73(9):1073–1080. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Jette AM, Branch LG. The Framingham Disability Study: II. Physical disability among the aging. Am J Public Health. 1981 Nov;71(11):1211–1216. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Mossey JM, Shapiro E. Self-rated health: a predictor of mortality among the elderly. Am J Public Health. 1982 Aug;72(8):800–808. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Idler EL, Kasl SV, Lemke JH. Self-evaluated health and mortality among the elderly in New Haven, Connecticut, and Iowa and Washington counties, Iowa, 1982-1986. Am J Epidemiol. 1990 Jan;131(1):91–103. [PubMed]
  • Muller C. Health status and survival needs of the elderly. Am J Public Health. 1982 Aug;72(8):789–790. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Wingard DL, Berkman LF, Brand RJ. A multivariate analysis of health-related practices: a nine-year mortality follow-up of the Alameda County Study. Am J Epidemiol. 1982 Nov;116(5):765–775. [PubMed]
  • Pinsky JL, Leaverton PE, Stokes J., 3rd Predictors of good function: the Framingham Study. J Chronic Dis. 1987;40 (Suppl 1):159S–1822. [PubMed]
  • KAHN RL, GOLDFARB AI, POLLACK M, PECK A. Brief objective measures for the determination of mental status in the aged. Am J Psychiatry. 1960 Oct;117:326–328. [PubMed]
  • NEUGARTEN BL, HAVIGHURST RJ, TOBIN SS. The measurement of life satisfaction. J Gerontol. 1961 Apr;16:134–143. [PubMed]

Articles from American Journal of Public Health are provided here courtesy of American Public Health Association


Related citations in PubMed

See reviews...See all...

Cited by other articles in PMC

See all...


  • MedGen
    Related information in MedGen
  • PubMed
    PubMed citations for these articles

Recent Activity

Your browsing activity is empty.

Activity recording is turned off.

Turn recording back on

See more...