Respiratory symptoms in older people and their association with mortality

Hewitt, J.; Smeeth, L.; Bulpitt, C. J.; Tulloch, A. J.; Fletcher, A. E.
April 2005
Thorax;Apr2005, Vol. 60 Issue 4, p331
Academic Journal
journal article
Background: A study was undertaken to assess the prevalence of reported respiratory symptoms in a population aged over 75 years and their association with mortality.Methods: A total of 14 458 people aged 75 years and over participating in a trial of health screening of older people in general practice answered questions on three respiratory symptoms: cough, sputum production, and wheeze. The association of symptoms with mortality was examined for all cause and respiratory causes of death taking account of potential confounders.Results: Coughing up phlegm in winter mornings had a prevalence of 27.0% (95% confidence interval (CI) 26.8 to 27.2). Those with this symptom had an adjusted hazard ratio for all cause mortality of 1.35 (95% CI 1.21 to 1.50), p<0.001 and for respiratory specific mortality of 2.01 (95% CI 1.66 to 2.41), p<0.001. Phlegm at any time of the day in winter had a prevalence of 16.5% (95% CI 16.3 to 16.7) with hazard ratios for all cause and respiratory specific mortality of 1.28 (95% CI 1.15 to 1.42) and 2.28 (95% CI 1.92 to 2.70), p<0.001. Wheeze or whistling from the chest had a prevalence of 14.3% (95% CI 14.1 to 14.5) with hazard ratios of 1.45 (95% CI 1.31 to 1.61) and 2.86 (95% CI 2.45 to 3.35), p<0.001.Conclusions: The prevalence of respiratory symptoms is widespread among elderly people and their presence is a strong predictor of mortality.


Related Articles

  • Tendência da mortalidade por doenças respiratórias em idosos e as queimadas no Estado de Rondônia/Brasil -- período entre 1998 e 2005. de Castro, Hermano Albuquerque; Gonçalves, Karen dos Santos; Hacon, Sandra de Souza // Revista Ciência & Saúde Coletiva;2009, Vol. 14 Issue 6, p2083 

    The forest fires in the Amazon region have been a serious environmental problem. Few studies relate the effects of forest fires on the health of exposed populations. This article aims to study the trend of mortality from respiratory diseases in the elderly, in the period 1998 to 2005, in the...

  • Affecting Factors Related to Air Pollution on Elderly Respiratory Health during Heating Period. Chunshan ZHAO; Min XU; Chunguo LI // Advanced Materials Research;2014, Vol. 955-959, p919 

    The aim of this study is to investigate the status in elderly respiratory illness and the impact of air pollution on elderly respiratory health in Jilin during the heating period. A stratified random cluster sampling was used to select 536 elderly living in different districts with different...

  • Traffic intensity, dwelling value, and hospital admissions for respiratory disease among the elderly in Montreal (Canada): a case-control analysis. Smargassi, Audrey; Berrada, Khalid; Fortier, Isabel; Kosatsky, Tom // Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health;Jun2006, Vol. 60 Issue 6, p507 

    Background: Persons exposed to residential traffic have increased rates of respiratory morbidity and mortality. As poverty is an important determinant of ill health, some have argued that these associations may relate to the lower socioeconomic status of those living along major roads. Aims: The...

  • Respiratory consultations in asthmatic compared with non-asthmatic children in general practice. Levy, Mark; Parmar, Mohini; Coetzee, David; Duffy, Stephen W. // British Medical Journal (Clinical Research Edition);7/6/1985, Vol. 291 Issue 6487, p29 

    Compares respiratory consultations between asthmatic and non-asthmatic children in general practice in Great Britain. Suspicion of asthma in any child with respiratory symptoms; Estimates of consultation rates for respiratory illnesses in children; Hyperactive airways of asthmatic children.

  • Quantum Sufficit. Damlo, Sherri // American Family Physician;9/1/2007, Vol. 76 Issue 5, p623 

    The article covers issues related to family medicine published in various periodicals. It presents the results of a study on how heat warnings affect the behavior of older people in the U.S. Based on research, trampolines are not safe and children should not be allowed to use it. The U.S....

  • Characteristics of patients aged over 75 not seen during one year in general practice. Williams, E. Edris // British Medical Journal (Clinical Research Edition);1/14/1984, Vol. 288 Issue 6411, p119 

    Examines the medical and social characteristics of aged patients not seen during one year in general practice in Great Britain. Inaccuracy of age-sex registers; Indicators of increased dependency; Definition of anticipatory care as plan intervention to achieve early diagnosis or treatment.

  • Measuring health-related quality of life in population-based studies of coronary heart disease: comparing six generic indexes and a disease-specific proxy score. Garster, Noelle C.; Palta, Mari; Sweitzer, Nancy K.; Kaplan, Robert M.; Fryback, Dennis G. // Quality of Life Research;Nov2009, Vol. 18 Issue 9, p1239 

    To compare HRQoL differences with CHD in generic indexes and a proxy CVD-specific score in a nationally representative sample of U.S. adults. The National Health Measurement Study, a cross-sectional random-digit-dialed telephone survey of adults aged 35–89, administered the EQ-5D, QWB-SA,...

  • Antidepressants in Older Persons. Swan, Avril // American Family Physician;11/1/2006, Vol. 74 Issue 9, p1503 

    The article focuses on effective and well-tolerated antidepressants in older persons with depression. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, tricyclic antidepressants and tri-cyclic like compounds are the classes of antidepressants that are effective in older persons. Diagnosis of depression...

  • Check for anemia in elderly community patients.  // Modern Medicine;Feb95, Vol. 63 Issue 2, p37 

    Presents an abstract of the article `Prevalence of Anemia in Medical Practice: Community Versus Referral Patients,' by B.J. Ania, V.J. Suman et al from the periodical `Mayo Clinic Proceedings,' dated August 1994.


Read the Article


Sign out of this library

Other Topics