Recovery and survival from aging-associated diseases.
OBJECTIVES: Considering disease incidence to be a main contributor to healthy lifespan of the US elderly population may lead to erroneous conclusions when recovery/long-term remission factors are underestimated. Using two Medicare-based population datasets, we investigated the properties of recovery from eleven age-related diseases. METHODS: Cohorts of patients who stopped visiting doctors during a five-year follow-up since disease onset were analyzed non-parametrically and using the Cox proportional hazard model resulted in estimated recovery and survival rates and evaluated the health state of recovered individuals by comparing their survival with non-recovered patients and the general population. RESULTS: Recovered individuals had lower death rates than non-recovered patients, therefore, patients who stopped visiting doctors are a healthier subcohort. However, they had higher death rates than in general population for all considered diseases, therefore the complete recovery does not occur. CONCLUSION: Properties of recovery/long-term remission among the US population of older adults with chronic diseases were uncovered and evaluated. The results allow for a better quantifiable contribution of age-related diseases to healthy life expectancy and improving forecasts of health and mortality.
Akushevich, I; Kravchenko, J; Ukraintseva, S; Arbeev, K; Yashin, AI
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