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Gerontologist. 2004 Aug;44(4):459-68.

Pain perceptions of the oldest old: a longitudinal study.

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1
Department of Human Development and Family Studies, The Pennsylvania State University, Henderson S-211, University Park, PA 16802, USA. Z67@psu.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

This study assessed self-reported pain in the oldest old and examined its changes over time and in relation to other measures of health and functioning.

DESIGN AND METHODS:

A population-based sample of the oldest old (86-92 years of age) residing in Sweden who were participating in a multiwave longitudinal investigation were interviewed about their experience of pain, as well as other dimensions of health and functioning.

RESULTS:

Prevalence of pain at baseline was 34% and rose to 40% at follow-up. Incidence of new pain cases during that period was 16 percent. Pain was significantly related to sleep difficulties, medication usage, global subjective health, depressive symptoms, and mobility, though the magnitude of the associations was relatively small.

IMPLICATIONS:

Our results extend previous cross-sectional findings by demonstrating there is both an increase in the proportion of people reporting pain over time after the age of 85 as well as the possibility of recovery. The modest strength of associations of pain with other areas of functioning suggests adaptation and selectivity among survivors in very late life.

PMID:
15331803
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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