Health screening of middle-aged women: what factors impact longevity?
Juan E Blümel et al
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to measure the impact of different risk factors in middle-aged women on longevity evaluated after three decades of an initial health screening.
METHODS: Women who received an annual check-up between 1990 and 1993 were recruited. Anamnesis and physical examination were recorded. Blood samples for the measurement of glycemia and lipids were taken. Data are reported as of December 2021.
RESULTS: A total of 1,158 women aged 40 to 60 were studied. At 30.9 years of follow-up, the Kaplan-Meier overall survival was 75.6% (95% confidence interval, 72.6-78.3). The main causes of the 260 deaths observed were the following: cancer ( n = 88; 33.8%), cardiovascular disease ( n = 55; 21.2%), and infectious disease ( n = 41; 15.8%). The following hazard ratios were found with the flexible parametric survival model: personal history of fracture (hazard ratio, 2.55; 95% confidence interval, 1.29-5.02; P = 0.007), type 2 diabetes mellitus (2.14; 1.18-3.88; P = 0.012), personal history of heart disease (1.85; 1.09-3.13; P = 0.022), chronic arterial hypertension (1.65; 1.25-2.17; P < 0.001), postmenopausal status (1.60; 1.13-2.26; P = 0.008), unskilled jobs (1.56; 1.17-2.07; P = 0.002), cigarette smoking (1.51; 1.17-1.94; P = 0.002), age (1.06; 1.03-1.09; P < 0.001), body mass index (1.04; 1.01-1.07; P = 0.004), multiparous (0.72; 0.56-0.93; P = 0.012), and active sexual intercourse (0.68; 0.52-0.87; P = 0.003). Lipid disorders did not reach statistical significance as a risk factor.
CONCLUSIONS: In this cohort, it was observed that most of the classic risk factors for mortality were present. However, a history of fracture appears in middle-aged women as a strong predictor of mortality, surpassing diabetes and arterial hypertension. Multiparity, on the other hand, was a protective factor.