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J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2012 Apr;67(4):395-405. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glr223. Epub 2012 Jan 4.

Health span approximates life span among many supercentenarians: compression of morbidity at the approximate limit of life span.

Author information

  • 1New England Centenarian Study, Department of Medicine, Boston Medical Center, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA 02118, USA.

Abstract

We analyze the relationship between age of survival, morbidity, and disability among centenarians (age 100-104 years), semisupercentenarians (age 105-109 years), and supercentenarians (age 110-119 years). One hundred and four supercentenarians, 430 semisupercentenarians, 884 centenarians, 343 nonagenarians, and 436 controls were prospectively followed for an average of 3 years (range 0-13 years). The older the age group, generally, the later the onset of diseases, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, dementia, and stroke, as well as of cognitive and functional decline. The hazard ratios for these individual diseases became progressively less with older and older age, and the relative period of time spent with disease was lower with increasing age group. We observed a progressive delay in the age of onset of physical and cognitive function impairment, age-related diseases, and overall morbidity with increasing age. As the limit of human life span was effectively approached with supercentenarians, compression of morbidity was generally observed.

PMID:
22219514
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3309876
Free PMC Article

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