Reproductive History and Later Life Co-Morbidity Trajectories: Are the Fertile Frail?

Heidi Hanson, Huntsman Cancer Institute
Zachary Zimmer, University of California, San Francisco

The relationship between reproductive history and later life health is examined using data based on linkages between the Utah Population Database and Medicare Claims data. Later life health is measured using the Charlson Comorbidity Index, a construct that summarizes nearly all serious illnesses afflicting older individuals. We use group based trajectory modeling to identify distinct morbidity trajectories by age group from 1992 to 2002. We show that parity, age at first birth, age at last birth, marital status at time of birth, birth weight of offspring, and having a preterm birth are related to later life morbidity profiles for women between the ages of 66 and 79 at the time of first observation, but had little association with morbidity trajectories for women at older ages.

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Presented in Session 202: Health, Disability and Well-Being at Older Ages