Trajectories of multimorbidity and impacts on successful aging

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37 Citations (Scopus)


Elderly people usually have multiple chronic diseases concurrently. However, studies of multimorbidity patterns over long time periods are scarce. The purpose of this study was to examine the joint trajectories of chronic multimorbidity among the Taiwanese elderly and to examine related factors and to predict later successful aging outcomes. The data used in this study were from a nation-representative panel survey conducted in Taiwan from 1993 to 2007. Those who participated in at least three waves of the survey were included in the analysis (in total 2584 persons and 57,012 observations). The chronic diseases included cardiovascular disease (CVD), chronic non-specific lung disease (CNSLD), arthritis, cancer, gastrointestinal disease (GI), and kidney disease. The multiple group-based trajectories analysis approach was applied to identify the trajectory groups. Four trajectory groups of multimorbidity were identified: low risk (55.51%), CVD risk only (15.55%), GI & CNSLD risk (20.20%), and multiple risks (8.74%). Related factors included age, level of education, physical functioning, depressive symptoms, and undergoing health examinations. The multimorbidity trajectories affected later physical functioning, depressive symptoms, cognitive function, and life satisfaction. Multiple trajectories of multimorbidity show the patterns of health burden and risks to successful aging among the elderly over time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)32-38
Number of pages7
JournalExperimental Gerontology
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Chronic disease
  • Comorbidity
  • Multimorbidity
  • Multiple group-based trajectories
  • Successful aging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Ageing
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Endocrinology
  • Cell Biology


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