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BMC Public Health. 2012; 12: 54.
Published online Jan 19, 2012. doi:  10.1186/1471-2458-12-54
PMCID: PMC3305484
Life satisfaction and mortality in elderly people: The Kangwha Cohort Study
Heejin Kimm,1 Jae Woong Sull,corresponding author2,5 Bayasgalan Gombojav,1 Sang-Wook Yi,3 and Heechoul Ohrr4
1Institute for Health Promotion & Department of Epidemiology and Health Promotion, Graduate School of Public Health, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea
2Department of Biomedical Laboratory Science, College of Health Sciences, Eulji University, Seongnam, Korea
3Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, Kwandong University College of Medicine, Gangneung, Korea
4Department of Preventive Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
5Department of Biomedical Laboratory Science, College of Health Science, Eulji University, 212, Yangji-dong, Sujoung-gu, Sungnam-Si, Gyeongi-Do 461-713, Korea
corresponding authorCorresponding author.
Heejin Kimm: HEEJINK/at/yuhs.ac; Jae Woong Sull: jsull/at/eulji.ac.kr; Bayasgalan Gombojav: bayasgalang/at/gmail.com; Sang-Wook Yi: flyhigh/at/kd.ac.kr; Heechoul Ohrr: ohrr/at/yuhs.ac
Received September 7, 2011; Accepted January 19, 2012.
Abstract
Background
As well as biomedical risk factors, psychological factors have been reported to be related to mortality rate. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between life satisfaction and mortality in elderly people through an 11.8-year follow-up study of a prospective cohort.
Methods
Among 3,600 participants of the Kangwha Cohort Study who survived in 1994, 1,939 respondents of the Life Satisfaction Index (LSI)-A questionnaire were included (men, 821; women, 1118). The mortality risk for the period up to December 2005 was measured using the Cox Proportional Hazard Model.
Results
When the relationship between LSI and mortality was evaluated in men, the unsatisfied group with lower LSI scores showed a significantly higher risk of all-cause mortality (hazard ratio [HR], 1.42; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.11-1.83) than the satisfied group with higher LSI scores. In women, the unsatisfied group showed a significantly higher risk of all-cause mortality (HR, 1.51; 95% CI, 1.18-1.92) and cardiovascular mortality (HR, 2.23; 95% CI, 1.30-3.85) than the satisfied group.
Conclusion
We found that elderly people with a lower LSI score, regardless of gender, were at risk of increased mortality from all causes, and low LSI score was also associated with cardiovascular mortality.
Keywords: Life satisfaction, Elderly, Mortality, Cardiovascular disease, Quality of life
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