Applied Research in Quality of Life

, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp 119–136 | Cite as

Determinants of Quality of Life in Pre-Frail Older Adults According to Phenotypic Criteria: the VERISAUDE Study

  • Ana Maseda
  • Laura Lorenzo-López
  • Trinidad Lorenzo
  • Clara Diego-Diez
  • Begoña Alonso-Búa
  • Rocío López-López
  • José C. Millán-Calenti


Frailty is a dynamic clinical syndrome considered as part of an age-associated continuum of severity, including pre-frailty as an intermediate frailty status with potential reversibility to robustness. The main purpose of this study was to analyse the relationship between the different domains of quality of life, functional dependence and depressive symptomatology in older adults diagnosed as pre-frail, before progression to frailty occurs. Logistic regression analyses were conducted to examine whether sex, age, level of education and scores in the Geriatric Depression Scale 15-item Short Form (GDS-SF) and the Instrumental Activities of Daily Living Lawton scale determine the worst score in the WHOQOL-BREF (World Health Organization Quality of Life) in older adults meeting one or two frailty phenotypic criteria. Depressive symptomatology (GDS-SF score) was the main determinant of poor quality of life in both groups, and in all areas of WHOQOL-BREF. Age was only associated with poor satisfaction with own health. Female sex and low educational level were linked to low physical QOL and poor self-rated health, respectively, but only in older adults meeting one frailty criterion. Association between functional status and WHOQOL-BREF scores was only found in the univariate analysis. These results underline the importance of identifying multiple aspects, but mainly the presence of depressive symptomatology, as risk factors for all dimensions of quality of life in the pre-frailty process, where interventions might be targeted to reduce the progression of pre-frailty and frailty in older adults.


Depressive symptomatology Frailty Functional status Older adults Quality of life 



The authors sincerely thank the staff and elderly users of the 43 senior centres who contributed to this study.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

The study protocol was drafted according to the principles embodied in the Declaration of Helsinki and was approved by the Ethics Committee of the University of A Coruña. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


This research was supported by the Xunta de Galicia, project EM 2012/100: ‘VERISAUDE project: Effectiveness of the Comprehensive Gerontological Assessment (CGA) and longitudinal follow-up in the healthy ageing promotion’ and FrailNet network IN607C, 2016/08. The authors thank the World Health Organization for granting permission to use and providing the Spanish version of the WHOQOL-BREF.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht and The International Society for Quality-of-Life Studies (ISQOLS) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Universidade da Coruña, Gerontology Research Group, Instituto de Investigación Biomédica de A Coruña (INIBIC), Complexo Hospitalario Universitario de A Coruña (CHUAC), SERGASA CoruñaSpain
  2. 2.Research, Development and Innovation Department, Gerontological Complex La Milagrosa, Provincial Association of Pensioners and Retired People (UDP) from A CoruñaA CoruñaSpain

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