Symptom trajectory and symptom burden in older people with multimorbidity, secondary outcome from the RCT AGe-FIT study

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift


AIM: The aim of this study was to follow the symptom trajectory of community-dwelling older people with multimorbidity and to explore the effect on symptom burden from an ambulatory geriatric care unit, based on comprehensive geriatric assessment.

BACKGROUND: Older community-dwelling people with multimorbidity suffer from a high symptom burden with a wide range of co-occurring symptoms often resulting to decreased health-related quality of life. There is a need to move from a single-disease model and address the complexity of older people living with multimorbidity.

DESIGN: Secondary outcome data from the randomized controlled Ambulatory Geriatric Assessment Frailty Intervention Trial (AGe-FIT).

METHODS: Symptom trajectory of 31 symptoms was assessed with the Memorial Symptom Assessment Scale. Data from 247 participants were assessments at baseline, 12 and 24 months, 2011-2013. Participants in the intervention group received care from an ambulatory geriatric care unit based on comprehensive geriatric assessment in addition to usual care.

RESULTS: Symptom prevalence and symptom burden were high and stayed high over time. Pain was the symptom with the highest prevalence and burden. Over the 2-year period 68-81% of the participants reported pain. Other highly prevalent and persistent symptoms were dry mouth, lack of energy and numbness/tingling in the hands/feet, affecting 38-59% of participants. No differences were found between the intervention and control group regarding prevalence, burden or trajectory of symptoms.

CONCLUSIONS: Older community-dwelling people with multimorbidity had a persistent high burden of symptoms. Receiving advanced interdisciplinary care at an ambulatory geriatric unit did not significantly reduce the prevalence or the burden of symptoms.


Externa organisationer
  • Helsingborg Hospital
  • Karolinska Institute


Sidor (från-till)2773-2783
Antal sidor11
TidskriftJournal of Advanced Nursing
StatusPublished - 2016 nov
Peer review utfördJa
Externt publiceradJa