Send to

Choose Destination
Int Arch Occup Environ Health. 2009 Oct;82(9):1133-8. doi: 10.1007/s00420-009-0417-6. Epub 2009 Apr 14.

Predicting long-term sickness absence and early retirement pension from self-reported work ability.

Author information

National Research Centre for the Working Environment, Lersø Parkallé 105, Copenhagen, Denmark.

Erratum in

  • Int Arch Occup Environ Health. 2009 Oct;82(9):1139. Bültmann, Ute [added]; Rugulies, Reiner [added]; Villadsen, Ebbe [added]; Faber, Anne [added]; Søgaard, Karen [added].



The aim of this paper is to examine the relationship between self-reported work ability and long-term term of sickness absence or early retirement from the labour market.


Data on work ability were retrieved from a representative cohort study of Danish wage earners and linked with a register of social payment transfers. In all, 4.743 individuals were followed from 2001 to 2005. Cox regression was used for the analyses.


A one point decrease in perceived work ability, on a 10 point scale, was associated with an increased risk of long-term sickness absence (LTSA) of 15.1% (95% CI 12-19%, P < 0.0001) and an increased risk of early retirement from the labour market of 33% (95% CI 20-48%, P < 0.0001).


Reports of reduced work ability were significantly associated with both an increased risk of onset of LTSA and early retirement from the labour market, after adjustment for socio-demographic characteristics and lifestyle variables.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Springer
Loading ...
Support Center