Self-neglect in an elderly community-dwelling U.S. Chinese population: Findings from the population study of Chinese elderly in Chicago study

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Abstract

This study aimed to examine the prevalence of self-neglect and its specific behaviors in an elderly community-dwelling U.S. Chinese population through a population-based cohort study (PINE Study) in the greater Chicago area. Community-dwelling population of older Chinese adults were interviewed from 2011 to 2013 (n = 3,159). The personal and home environment of participants was rated based on prevalence of hoarding behavior, personal hygiene, repairs needed on the home, sanitary condition of the home, and adequacy of utilities. Prevalence estimates were presented according to self-reported quality of life (QOL). It was found that the prevalence of self-neglect was 18.2% for mild self-neglect and 10.9% for moderate to severe self-neglect. Unsanitary conditions (17.0%) was the most prevalent, followed by need for home repair (16.3%), hoarding behavior (14.9%), poor personal hygiene (11.3%), and inadequate utilities (4.2%). The prevalence of elder self-neglect of all severities and of all types was higher in older adults with fair or poor QOL than in those with good or very good QOL. Poorer QOL was significantly associated with greater risk of self-neglect of all severities (mild self-neglect: odds ratio (OR) = 1.93, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.26-2.96, P <.001; moderate to severe self-neglect: OR = 3.58, 95% CI = 1.79-7.13, P <.001) and specific personal and environmental hazards. The study's authors conclude that elder self-neglect is prevalent, especially in elderly adults with poorer QOL. Future research is needed to examine risk and protective factors associated with elder self-neglect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2391-2397
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Geriatrics Society
Volume62
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2014
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

Keywords

  • Chinese aging
  • environmental hazards
  • hoarding
  • hygiene
  • population-based study
  • self-neglect
  • squalor

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