Challenges of Ageing in Portugal: Data from the EpiDoC Cohort

Authors

  • Ana Maria Rodrigues EpiDoC Unit. Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas. NOVA Medical School. Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Lisboa. Sociedade Portuguesa de Reumatologia. Lisboa. Rheumatology Research Unit. Instituto de Medicina Molecular. Lisboa. EpiSaúde – Associação Científica. Évora.
  • Maria João Gregório EpiDoC Unit. Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas. NOVA Medical School. Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Lisboa. EpiSaúde – Associação Científica. Évora. Faculdade de Ciências da Nutrição e Alimentação. Universidade do Porto. Porto. Programa Nacional para a Promoção da Alimentação Saudável. Direção-Geral da Saúde. Lisboa.
  • Rute Dinis Sousa EpiDoC Unit. Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas. NOVA Medical School. Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Lisboa. EpiSaúde – Associação Científica. Évora.
  • Sara S Dias EpiDoC Unit. Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas. NOVA Medical School. Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Lisboa. EpiSaúde – Associação Científica. Évora. Unidade de Investigação em Saúde. Escola Superior de Saúde. Instituto Politécnico de Leiria. Leiria.
  • Maria José Santos Sociedade Portuguesa de Reumatologia. Lisboa. Rheumatology Research Unit. Instituto de Medicina Molecular. Lisboa.Hospital Garcia de Orta. Almada.
  • Jorge M Mendes NOVA Information Management School. Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Pedro Simões Coelho NOVA Information Management School. Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Lisboa.
  • Jaime C Branco EpiDoC Unit. Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas. NOVA Medical School. Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Lisboa. Sociedade Portuguesa de Reumatologia. Lisboa. EpiSaúde – Associação Científica. Évora. Serviço de Reumatologia. Centro Hospitalar Lisboa Ocidental. Hospital Egas Moniz. Lisboa.
  • Helena Canhão EpiDoC Unit. Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas. NOVA Medical School. Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Lisboa. Sociedade Portuguesa de Reumatologia. Lisboa. EpiSaúde – Associação Científica. Évora. Escola Nacional de Saúde Pública. Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Lisboa.

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.20344/amp.9817

Keywords:

Aging, Comorbidity, Delivery of Health Care, Outcome Assessment (Health Care), Portugal, Quality of Life

Abstract

Introduction: Portuguese adults have a long lifespan, but it is unclear whether they live a healthy life in their final years. We aimed to determine the prevalence of multimorbidity and characterize lifestyle and other health outcomes among older Portuguese adults.
Material and Methods: We performed a cross-sectional evaluation of 2393 adults, aged 65 and older, during the second wave of follow-up of the EpiDoC cohort, a population-based study involving long-term follow-up of a representative sample of the Portuguese population. Subjects completed a structured questionnaire during a telephone interview. Socioeconomic, demographic, lifestyle behaviours, chronic diseases, and health resources consumption were assessed. Cluster analysis was done to identify dietary patterns. Descriptive and analytic analysis was performed to estimate multimorbidity prevalence and its associated factors.
Results: Multimorbidity prevalence among older adults was 78.3%, increased with age strata (72.8% for 65 – 69 years to 83.4% for ≥ 80 years), and was highest in Azores (84.9%) and Alentejo (83.6%). The most common chronic diseases were hypertension (57.3%), rheumatic disease (51.9%), hypercholesterolemia (49.4%), and diabetes (22.7%). Depression symptoms were frequent (11.8%) and highest in the oldest strata. The mean health-related quality of life (EQ-5D-3L) score was 0.59 ± 0.38. Hospitalization in the previous 12 months was reported by 25.8% of individuals. Overall, 66.6% of older adults were physically inactive. ‘Fruit and vegetables dietary pattern’ was followed by 85.4% of individuals; however, regional inequalities were found (69% in Azores). Obesity prevalence was 22.3% overall and was highest among Azoreans (33%).
Conclusion: The high prevalence of multimorbidity, combined with unhealthy lifestyle behaviours, suggests that the elderly population
constitutes a vulnerable group warranting dedicated intervention.

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Published

2018-02-28

How to Cite

1.
Rodrigues AM, Gregório MJ, Sousa RD, Dias SS, Santos MJ, Mendes JM, Coelho PS, Branco JC, Canhão H. Challenges of Ageing in Portugal: Data from the EpiDoC Cohort. Acta Med Port [Internet]. 2018 Feb. 28 [cited 2022 Dec. 10];31(2):80-93. Available from: https://www.actamedicaportuguesa.com/revista/index.php/amp/article/view/9817

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Original