Volume 50, Issue 9 p. 1535-1540

The Effect of Cardiovascular and Osteoarticular Diseases on Disability in Older Italian Men and Women: Rationale, Design, and Sample Characteristics of the Progetto Veneto Anziani (PRO.V.A.) Study

Maria-Chiara Corti MD, MHS

Maria-Chiara Corti MD, MHS

Department of Medicine, Division of Geriatrics, Camposampiero Hospital, Padova, Italy;

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Jack M. Guralnik MD, PhD

Jack M. Guralnik MD, PhD

Epidemiology, Demography and Biometry Program, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland;

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Leonardo Sartori MD

Leonardo Sartori MD

Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, School of Medicine, University of Padova, Italy;

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Giovannella Baggio MD

Giovannella Baggio MD

Division of Internal Medicine, Azienda Ospedaliera, Padova, Italy;

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Enzo Manzato MD

Enzo Manzato MD

Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, School of Medicine, University of Padova, Italy;

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Patrizio Pezzotti PhD

Patrizio Pezzotti PhD

Laboratory of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Istituto Superiore di Sanita, Rome, Italy; and

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GianMaria Barbato MD

GianMaria Barbato MD

Division of Internal Medicine, Azienda Ospedaliera, Padova, Italy;

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Sabina Zambon MD

Sabina Zambon MD

Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, School of Medicine, University of Padova, Italy;

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Luigi Ferrucci MD

Luigi Ferrucci MD

Geriatric Department, I Fraticini, Istituto Nazionale di Ricerca e Cura per Gli Anziani, Florence, Italy.

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Sergio Minervini MD

Sergio Minervini MD

Department of Medicine, Division of Geriatrics, Camposampiero Hospital, Padova, Italy;

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Estella Musacchio MD

Estella Musacchio MD

Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, School of Medicine, University of Padova, Italy;

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Gaetano Crepaldi MD

Gaetano Crepaldi MD

Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, School of Medicine, University of Padova, Italy;

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First published: 17 October 2002
Citations: 66
Address correspondence to Maria Chiara Corti, MD, MHS, Divisione di Geriatria, Ospedale di Camposampiero, Via P. Cosma 1, 35012 Camposampiero, Padova, Italy. E-mail: [email protected]

Abstract

OBJECTIVES: Describe the methodology and preliminary results of the Progetto Veneto Anziani (PRO.V.A.) Study, an observational study of the Italian population aged 65 and older

DESIGN: Cross-sectional cohort observation.

SETTING: Northern Italy.

PARTICIPANTS: Italians aged 65 and older, living in both the community and nursing homes.

MEASUREMENTS: At baseline, participants were interviewed at their homes and subsequently examined by nurses and physicians at the two study clinics using an extensive battery of clinical, instrumental, biochemical, and physical performance tests. Hand, knee, hip, and chest x-rays and bone densitometry were performed in 92% of the participants, and 99% of the participants consented to blood drawing and deoxyribonucleic acid analyses. The physician who performed the physical examination determined disease presence based on several components of the interview and examination. A further, comprehensive determination was performed with standardized algorithms using all the information collected on each participant, including hospital records surveillance, standardized x-ray readings, and blood assays. In one of the study sites, a brain magnetic resonance imaging was performed in a subsample of the participants (820 persons).

RESULTS: Overall response rate to the baseline clinic visit was 77% for men and 64% for women. Co-presence of at least one cardiovascular disease (CVD) and at least one osteoarticular disease (OAD) was identified in 10%, 22%, and 29% of men and 9%, 24%, and 40% of women aged 65 to 74, 75 to 84, and 85 and older, respectively. Overall, the mean number of coexisting chronic conditions was 1.8 for men and 2.4 for women.

CONCLUSIONS: The PRO.V.A. study has the potential to provide an original contribution to clarify the mechanisms whereby diseases cause disability in older men and women; the particular focus on CVD and OADs will make it possible to comprehensively evaluate the development of disability as it relates to these two important conditions.