A prospective, multidimensional follow-up study of a geriatric hospitalised population: Predictors of discharge and well-being

Jessica Dagani, Clarissa Ferrari, Maria Elena Boero, Cristina Geroldi, Gian Marco Giobbio, Paolo Maggi, Anna Lucia Melegari, Guido Sattin, Matteo Signorini, Daniele Volpe, Orazio Zanetti, Giovanni De Girolamo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and aims: Ageing trends in populations are common amongst most European countries. One of the consequences of this trend is the increase of hospitalisation of elderly patients. To better manage the elderly population hospitalisation, it is crucial to obtain a better understanding of this population's clinical and functional conditions and their hospitalisation outcome predictors. The present prospective observational cohort study aimed at studying the variables considered predictive of the length of stay, of destination at discharge, of re-hospitalisation, and of mortality at 6 months of elderly (age >64 years, N = 329) admitted to ten geriatric units, having different missions (e.g., cognitive impairment and dementia; movement disorders; bone fractures and immobilisation syndrome; or stroke), of the St. John of God Order during a 4-month-long index period. Methods: The patients were monitored from the first day of hospitalisation through the discharge. Researchers filled in a ''Patient Schedule'' based on a comprehensive set of socio-demographic and clinical variables and standardised assessment tools. We used a standardised telephone interview to re-assess patients at the 6-month follow-up. Results: The BRASS score proved to be a better reliable predictor of length of stay (F = 3.9, p = 0.04) among all variables associated with higher risks of prolonged hospital stay and post-discharge problems. In addition, discharge destination was also predicted by the use of the Tinetti Scale score (OR = 0.95, 95 % CI 0.90-0.99), the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) score (OR = 0.1.07, 95 % CI 1.01-1.13) and by independence in daily activity as measured by the IADL scale (OR = 4.09, 95 % CI 1.46-11.44). Motor functioning resulted as a reliable predictor (OR = 2.67, 95 % CI 1.27-5.59) of re-hospitalisation in all the medical units. Lastly, female gender (OR = 0.28, 95 % CI 0.11-0.71) resulted as the only reliable variable associated with a lower mortality risk after discharge. Conclusion: The variables related to the clinical and functional status were reliable predictors for length of stay, for discharge destination, and for re-hospitalisation among older patients admitted to ten geriatric units in Italy. Further research is needed to establish valid and reliable predictors of mortality risk, to develop effective preventive strategies in those vulnerable populations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)691-701
Number of pages11
JournalAging clinical and experimental research
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013


  • Clinical outcomes
  • Geriatrics
  • Hospitalisation
  • Risk factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ageing
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


Dive into the research topics of 'A prospective, multidimensional follow-up study of a geriatric hospitalised population: Predictors of discharge and well-being'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this