Fatigue is a common complaint among older adults, but the association of fatigue with subsequent function is not well known.
This 3-year longitudinal study of older primary care patients evaluates the association of fatigue, operationalized as feeling tired most of the time, with functional status at baseline and over time.
After adjustment for multiple potential confounders, participants who were tired at baseline had worse Short Form-36 Physical Performance Index scores, activity of daily living scores, and gait speeds.
These functional deficits persisted throughout the follow-up period.
Fatigue in older adults is associated with functional deficits that persist for years.
Further research is needed to understand the causes of fatigue and to develop specific treatments for this serious symptom.
The journals of gerontology. Series A, Biological sciences and medical sciences
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA, USA. hardys [at] dom.pitt.edu
J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2008 Dec;63(12):1389-92
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