Predicting Cause-Specific Mortality of Older Men Living in the Veterans Home by Handgrip Strength and Walking Speed: A 3-Year, Prospective Cohort Study in Taiwan

Ping Jen Chen, Ming Hsien Lin, Li Ning Peng, Chien Liang Liu, Chih Wei Chang, Yi Tsong Lin, Liang Kung Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: To determine prognostic value of handgrip strength (HGS) and walking speed (WS) in predicting the cause-specific mortality for older men. Design: Prospective cohort study. Setting: Banciao Veterans Care Home. Participants: 558 residents aged 75 years and older. Measurements: Anthropometric data, lifestyle factors, comorbid conditions, biomarkers, HGS, and WS at recruitment; all-cause and cause-specific mortality at 3 years after recruitment. Results: During the study period, 99 participants died and the baseline HGS and WS were significantly lower than survivors (P both <.001). Cox survival analysis showed that subjects with slowest quartile of WS were at significantly higher risk of all-cause mortality and cardiovascular mortality (hazard ratio [HR] 3.55, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.69-7.43; HR 11.55, 95% CI 2.30-58.04, respectively), whereas the lowest quartile of HGS significantly predicted a higher risk of infection-related death (HR 5.53, 95% CI 1.09-28.09). Participants in the high-risk status with slowest quartile for WS but not those in the high-risk status with weakest quartile for HGS had similar high risk of all-cause mortality with the group with combined high-risk status (HR 2.96, 95% CI 1.68-5.23; HR 2.58, 95% CI 1.45-4.60, respectively) compared with the participants without high-risk status (reference group). Conclusions: Slow WS predicted all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, whereas weak HGS predicted a higher risk of infection-related death among elderly, institutionalized men in Taiwan. Combining HGS with WS simultaneously had no better prognostic value than using WS only in predicting all-cause mortality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)517-521
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the American Medical Directors Association
Volume13
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2012

Keywords

  • Handgrip strength
  • Long term care facilities
  • Mortality
  • Walking speed

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