Prevalence and predictive importance of anemia in Swedish nursing home residents - A longitudinal study

Björn Westerlind, Carl Johan Östgren, Sigvard Mölstad, Patrik Midlöv

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikel i vetenskaplig tidskriftPeer review


Background: Anemia is common in elderly people and especially in nursing home residents. Few studies have been performed on the consequences of anemia in a nursing home population. This study explored the prevalence of anemia in nursing homes in Sweden, including risk factors and mortality associated with anemia or hemoglobin (Hb) decline. Methods: Three hundred ninety patients from 12 nursing homes were included during 2008-2011. Information about medication, blood samples, questionnaire responses and information about physical and social activities was recorded. The baseline characteristics of the patients were compared for subjects with and without anemia. Vital status was ascertained during the following 7 years from baseline to compare the survival. Hb levels <120 g/L in women and <130 g/L in men were used to define anemia. For 220 of the subjects Hb change during one year was registered and the quartiles in Hb change were compared in terms of baseline characteristics and mortality. Results: The prevalence of anemia at baseline was 52% among men and 32% among women. The men with anemia had a two-year mortality significantly higher (61%) than the men without anemia (29%, p = 0.001) but there was no statistical difference in two-year survival in women. In anemic men there was a higher mortality (Hazard Ratio = 1.58) during a total follow-up period of up to 7 years after adjustment for age, increased B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) and decreased estimated Glomerular Filtration Rate (EGFR). Among men, but not women, we found baseline correlations between anemia and elevated BNP (>100 ng/L) and severely reduced EGFR (<30 ml/min). When the lowest quartile of Hb change (decline > 9 g/L) was compared with the highest (improvement > 6 g/L) the mortality was higher in the lowest quartile (p = 0.03). Conclusions: Anemia is common in nursing home residents in Sweden, especially among men for whom it is related to higher mortality. A rapid Hb drop is associated with higher mortality. Regardless of earlier Hb values, monitoring Hb regularly in a nursing home population seems important for catching rapid Hb decline correlated with higher mortality.

TidskriftBMC Geriatrics
StatusPublished - 2016 dec. 2

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ)

  • Geriatrik


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