Self-rated health in multimorbid older general practice patients : a cross-sectional study in Germany

  • Background: With increasing life expectancy the number of people affected by multimorbidity rises. Knowledge of factors associated with health-related quality of life in multimorbid people is scarce. We aimed to identify the factors that are associated with self-rated health (SRH) in aged multimorbid primary care patients. Methods: Cross-sectional study with 3,189 multimorbid primary care patients aged from 65 to 85 years recruited in 158 general practices in 8 study centers in Germany. Information about morbidity, risk factors, resources, functional status and socio-economic data were collected in face-to-face interviews. Factors associated with SRH were identified by multivariable regression analyses. Results: Depression, somatization, pain, limitations of instrumental activities (iADL), age, distress and Body Mass Index (BMI) were inversely related with SRH. Higher levels of physical activity, income and self-efficacy expectation had a positive association with SRH. The only chronic diseases remaining in the final model were Parkinson's disease and neuropathies. The final model accounted for 35% variance of SRH. Separate analyses for men and women detected some similarities; however, gender specific variation existed for several factors. Conclusion: In multimorbid patients symptoms and consequences of diseases such as pain and activity limitations, as well as depression, seem to be far stronger associated with SRH than the diseases themselves. High income and self-efficacy expectation are independently associated with better SRH and high BMI and age with low SRH.

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Author:Anna Nützel, Anne Dahlhaus, Angela Fuchs, Jochen GensichenORCiDGND, Hans-Helmut König, Steffi Gerlinde Riedel-Heller, Wolfgang Maier, Ingmar SchäferGND, Gerhard SchönORCiDGND, Siegfried Weyerer, Birgitt Wiese, Martin Scherer, Hendrik van den Bussche, Horst Bickel
Pubmed Id:
Parent Title (English):BMC family practice
Publisher:BioMed Central
Place of publication:London
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2014/01/03
Date of first Publication:2014/01/03
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2014/05/07
Tag:Chronic disease; Depression; Functionally-impaired elderly; General practice; Pain; Quality of life; Self-assessment
Page Number:12
© 2014 Nützel et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Institutes:Medizin / Medizin
Dewey Decimal Classification:6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 61 Medizin und Gesundheit / 610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung 2.0