Functional evaluation is a cornerstone of multidimensional geriatric assessment; however, little is known of the clinical value of standardized performance-based assessment in the acute care setting.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the clinical correlates and short-term predictive value of the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) in older patients admitted to the hospital for an acute medical event.
We enrolled 92 women and men 65 years old or older who were able to walk, who had a Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) score > or =18, and who were admitted to the hospital with a clinical diagnosis of congestive heart failure, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or minor stroke.
The SPPB was assessed at hospital admission and discharge. Self-report functional assessment included basic activities of daily living (ADL) and instrumental activities of daily living (IADL). Spearman's rank correlation coefficients and multivariable linear regression analyses were used to study the association of SPPB score and functional and clinical characteristics, including length of hospital stay.
The mean age was 77.7 years (range 65-94 years), 49% were female, 64.1% had congestive heart failure, 16% COPD, 13.1% pneumonia, and 6.5% minor stroke.
At hospital admission the mean SPPB score was 6.0 +/- 2.7. SPPB scores were inversely correlated with age, the severity of the index disease, and IADL and ADL difficulty 2 weeks before hospital admission (p <.01), and were directly correlated with MMSE score (p =.002). On average, SPPB score increased 1 point (+0.97, standard error of the mean = 0.2; p for paired t test <.001) from baseline to hospital discharge assessment.
After adjustment for potential confounders, baseline SPPB score was significantly associated with the length of hospital stay (p <.007).
In older acute care inpatients, SPPB is a valid indicator of functional and clinical status. SPPB score at hospital admission is an independent predictor of the length of hospital stay.
The journals of gerontology. Series A, Biological sciences and medical sciences
Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Ferrara, Via Savonarola, 9, I-44100 Ferrara, Italy. vlt [at] unife.it
J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2008 Dec;63(12):1393-8
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