Background: Older adults' function level can be used as a predictor of future detrimental events, such as disability, reliance on others, risk of institutionalization and likelihood of death. The assessment of function at the primary health care centers using self-reported and/or performance based measures is of prime importance.
Objective: To determine whether personal factors, pain, depression and physical activity are associated with self-reported and performance based disability for older adults aged ≥ 60 years attending primary health care centers, as measured by the WHO Disability Assessment Schedule 2.0 (WHODAS 2.0) and Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB), respectively.
Methods: Participants (196 females and 55 males; mean age ± SD = 70.87 ± 7.76) had their pain, self-reported disability, performance, physical activity levels and depressive symptoms assessed. Regression analyses were performed with self-reported and performance-based disability as the dependent variable and age, sex, education, chronic conditions, depression, physical activity and pain characteristics as dependent variables.
Results: Mean (SD) results for SPPB were 8.45 (2.86) and 20.06 (8.21) for WHODAS. Pain intensity, depression, pain frequency, number of chronic conditions and level of physical activity explained 44% of the self-reported disability variance. Pain intensity, age, level of physical activity, years of formal education and chronic conditions explained 37% of the performance variance. Pain intensity alone explained 27% and 18% of the self-reported and performance based disability, respectively.
Conclusion: Findings indicate that primary health care interventions should target pain intensity, depressive symptoms and physical activity as a means to preventing or decreasing both self-reported and performance based disability.
Keywords: Determinants; Pain intensity; Performance-based disability; Self-reported disability.
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