Age bias in physicians' recommendations for physical activity: a behavioral model of healthcare utilization for adults with arthritis.

Academic Article

Abstract

  • OBJECTIVE: To examine whether age bias exists in physicians' recommendations for physical activity among individuals with arthritis. METHODS: A cross-sectional sample with 33,071 U.S. adults, 45 years or older with physician-diagnosed arthritis was obtained from 2007 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System Survey. We used logistic regression to examine physicians' recommendations for physical activity as a function of age controlling for gender, race, education, marital status, employment, income, health insurance, personal physician, emotional support, body mass index, activity limitations, health status, and comorbidities. RESULTS: Majority of individuals were females (65%), White (85%), had annual household income < $50,000 (67%), and with comorbidities (86%). Respondents were approximately equal across age groups: middle-aged group (53%) and older group (47%). About 36% were obese and 44% had activity limitations, and 44% did not receive any physicians' recommendations for physical activity. Results from logistic regression indicated older adults (≥ 65 years old) were less likely (OR = 0.87; 95% CI, 0.82-0.92) to receive physicians' recommendations for physical activity compared with the middle-aged group (45-64 years old). CONCLUSIONS: This study indicates that although the benefits associated with the physical activity is well recognized, there is age bias in physicians' recommendations for physical activity.
  • Keywords

  • Age Factors, Aged, Ageism, Arthritis, Body Mass Index, Comorbidity, Cross-Sectional Studies, Exercise, Female, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Physicians, Sex Factors, Socioeconomic Factors
  • Author List

  • Austin S; Qu H; Shewchuk RM
  • Start Page

  • 222
  • End Page

  • 231
  • Volume

  • 10
  • Issue

  • 2