Associations between fibrin D-dimer, markers of inflammation, incident self-reported mobility limitation, and all-cause mortality in older men

J Am Geriatr Soc. 2014 Dec;62(12):2357-62. doi: 10.1111/jgs.13133.


Objectives: To examine the independent relationships between fibrin D-dimer, interleukin 6 (IL-6), C-reactive protein (CRP), and fibrinogen and incident mobility limitation and mortality.

Design: Prospective.

Setting: General practice in 24 British towns.

Participants: Men aged 60 to 79 without prevalent heart failure followed up for an average of 11.5 years (N = 3,925).

Measurements: All-cause mortality (n = 1,286) and self-reported mobility disability obtained at examination in 1998 to 2000 and in a postal questionnaire 3 to 5 years later in 2003.

Results: High D-dimer (top vs lowest tertile: adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 1.46, 95% confidence interval = 1.02-2.05) and IL-6 (aOR = 1.43, 95% CI = 1.01-2.02) levels (but not CRP or fibrinogen) were associated with greater incident mobility limitation after adjustment for confounders and prevalent disease status. IL-6, CRP, fibrinogen, and D-dimer were significantly associated with total mortality after adjustment for confounders. Only D-dimer and IL-6 predicted total mortality independent of each other and the other biomarkers. The adjusted hazard ratio (aHR) was 1.16 (95% CI = 1.10-1.22) for a standard deviation increase in log D-dimer and 1.10 (95% CI = 1.04-1.18) for a standard deviation increase in log IL-6. D-dimer was independently related to vascular and nonvascular mortality, and IL-6 was independently related to vascular mortality. Risks of mobility limitation and mortality were greatest in those with a combination of high D-dimer and IL-6 levels.

Conclusion: D-dimer and IL-6 are associated with risk of mobility limitation and mortality in older men without heart failure. The findings suggest that coagulation leads to functional decline and mortality s that inflammation does not explain.

Keywords: D-dimer; inflammation; mobility limitation; mortality.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • C-Reactive Protein / metabolism
  • Cause of Death
  • England / epidemiology
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / blood
  • Interleukin-6 / blood*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mobility Limitation*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


  • Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products
  • Interleukin-6
  • fibrin fragment D
  • C-Reactive Protein