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Objective: This study aimed to examine the longitudinal association between social relationships and physical functioning among community-dwelling older adults with chronic conditions. Methods: Self-reported questionnaires were distributed and collected between 2014 and 2017 from participants aged 65 years and older. The Index of Social Interaction was used to evaluate social relationships, and the instrumental activities of daily living (IADL) subscale of the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology Index of Competence was used to examine functional status. Data from 422 participants (190 men and 232 women) were included in the final analysis. Results: High social relationships demonstrated significant adverse effects (OR = 0.77, 95% CI = 0.64 – 0.93) on the decline of IADL in the overall sample, particularly for women (OR = 0.71, 95% CI = 0.55 – 0.93) but not for men ( p = 0.131). Conclusion: The finding suggests that functional limitation was influenced by social relationships among the disabled older adults, and the influence of social relationships on functional limitation differed based on gender.
Keywords: Interpersonal Relations; Functional Status; Gender; Aged; Chronic Disease; Longitudinal Studies; Health Behaviour.
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