Objective To describe the distribution of role limitation in the European population aged 18-64 years and to examine the contribution of health conditions to role limitation using a public-health approach. Methods Representative samples of the adult general population (n = 13,666) aged 18-64 years from 10 European countries of the World Mental Health (WMH) Surveys Initiative, grouped into three regions: Central-Western, Southern and Central-Eastern. The Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI 3.0) was used to assess six mental disorders and standard checklists for seven physical conditions. Days with full and with partial role limitation in the month previous to the interview were reported (WMH-WHODAS). Population Attributable Fraction (PAFs) of full and partial role limitation were estimated. Results Health conditions explained a large proportion of full role limitation (PAF = 62.6%) and somewhat less of partial role limitation (46.6%). Chronic pain was the single condition that consistently contributed to explain both disability measures in all European Regions. Mental disorders were the most important contributors to full and partial role limitation in Central-Western and Southern Europe. In Central-Eastern Europe, where mental disorders were less prevalent, physical conditions, especially cardiovascular diseases, were the highest contributors to disability. Conclusion The contribution of health conditions to role limitation in the three European regions studied is high. Mental disorders are associated with the largest impact in most of the regions. There is a need for mainstreaming disability in the public health agenda to reduce the role limitation associated with health conditions. The cross-regional differences found require further investigation.
- Common health conditions
- Population attributable risk
- Role limitation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health