Impact of influenza on the functional status of frail older persons

William Barker, Hannah Borisute, Christopher Cox, Ann Falsey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Little is known regarding the impact of influenza on functional status. We report an ongoing body of work to assess functional decline following influenza among older patients in nursing home and hospital settings. Methods: In nursing homes, a case-comparison design was used. One hundred and sixteen residents who developed influenza-like illness (ILI) during laboratory confirmed outbreaks of influenza A/H3N2 served as cases; 127 residents without ILI served as the comparison subjects. Measures of functional status before outbreak and 4 months after outbreak were collected from medical records. Matched pairs analyses were conducted to ascertain changes in measures of functional status. Results: Among case and comparison subjects, 25% and 16%, respectively, experienced decline in at least one major function (p=0.04) including bathing, dressing and mobility for a net 9% or 1 patient in 10 with decline attributable to influenza. Conclusion: Decline in major physical functions constitutes an important new and costly measure of impact of influenza on the frail elderly. A comparison study of functional decline among elders hospitalized with pneumonia during influenza season, involving 300 cases and 300 controls, is in the planning stages.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)631-635
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Congress Series
Issue numberC
StatePublished - Oct 1 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Frail older persons
  • Functional status
  • Influenza

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Impact of influenza on the functional status of frail older persons'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this