23-year trends in life expectancy in good and poor physical and cognitive health at age 65 years in the Netherlands, 1993-2016

Dorly J.H. Deeg, Hannie C. Comijs, Emiel O. Hoogendijk, Maaike van der Noordt, Martijn Huisman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVES: To examine 23-year trends in both physically and cognitively healthy life expectancy from age 65 years in the Netherlands. METHODS: We used 8 waves between 1993 and 2016 from the nationally representative Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam (12 948 observations). We calculated physically and cognitively healthy life expectancies by using the Sullivan life table method and tested prevalence trends over time by using generalized estimating equations. RESULTS: Total life expectancy at age 65 years rose from 14.7 to 18.7 years (men) and from 19.2 to 21.4 years (women). Life expectancy in poor physical health increased nonlinearly from 1.8 to 2.9 years for men; for women it fluctuated around 5.7 years. Meanwhile, life expectancy in good cognitive health increased linearly from 11.0 to 15.7 years (men) and from 13.4 to 18.0 years (women). The proportion of people with poor physical and poor cognitive health combined did not increase, averaging 5.9% (men) and 8.7% (women). CONCLUSIONS: This multiwave study shows that a negative trend in physically healthy life expectancy is accompanied by a positive trend in cognitively healthy life expectancy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1652-1658
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Public Health
Issue number12
Early online date7 Nov 2018
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018

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