Association of hearing impairment with incident frailty and falls in older adults

Rebecca J Kamil, Joshua Betz, Becky Brott Powers, Sheila Pratt, Stephen Kritchevsky, Hilsa N Ayonayon, Tammy B Harris, Elizabeth Helzner, Jennifer A Deal, Kathryn Martin, Matthew Peterson, Suzanne Satterfield, Eleanor M Simonsick, Frank R Lin, Health ABC study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

37 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: We aimed to determine whether hearing impairment (HI) in older adults is associated with the development of frailty and falls.

METHOD: Longitudinal analysis of observational data from the Health, Aging and Body Composition study of 2,000 participants aged 70 to 79 was conducted. Hearing was defined by the pure-tone-average of hearing thresholds at 0.5, 1, 2, and 4 kHz in the better hearing ear. Frailty was defined as a gait speed of <0.60 m/s and/or inability to rise from a chair without using arms. Falls were assessed annually by self-report.

RESULTS: Older adults with moderate-or-greater HI had a 63% increased risk of developing frailty (adjusted hazard ratio [HR] = 1.63, 95% confidence interval [CI] = [1.26, 2.12]) compared with normal-hearing individuals. Moderate-or-greater HI was significantly associated with a greater annual percent increase in odds of falling over time (9.7%, 95% CI = [7.0, 12.4] compared with normal hearing, 4.4%, 95% CI = [2.6, 6.2]).

DISCUSSION: HI is independently associated with the risk of frailty in older adults and with greater odds of falling over time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)644-660
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Aging and Health
Volume28
Issue number4
Early online date5 Oct 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016

Keywords

  • hearing impairment
  • frailty
  • falls
  • older adults
  • Health ABC

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Association of hearing impairment with incident frailty and falls in older adults'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Kamil, R. J., Betz, J., Powers, B. B., Pratt, S., Kritchevsky, S., Ayonayon, H. N., Harris, T. B., Helzner, E., Deal, J. A., Martin, K., Peterson, M., Satterfield, S., Simonsick, E. M., Lin, F. R., & Health ABC study (2016). Association of hearing impairment with incident frailty and falls in older adults. Journal of Aging and Health, 28(4), 644-660. https://doi.org/10.1177/0898264315608730