Content » Vol 23, Issue 4

Assessment of activities of daily living in the elderly. A study of a population of 76-year-olds in Gothenburg, Sweden

Sonn U, Asberg KH
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Gothenburg University, Sweden
DOI: 10.1080/165019779123193202


The cumulative structure of personal daily activities (Katz' Index of ADL) and four well-defined instrumental activities (cooking, transportation, shopping, and cleaning) have been studied in a population of 76-year-olds (N = 659) in Gothenburg, Sweden. Sixty-five percent of the population were independent, 22% were dependent in instrumental activities, and 13% were dependent in both instrumental and personal activities. No person was dependent in personal ADL and independent in instrumental ADL. The internal consistency and the coefficient of scalability were well above the acceptance level, which indicated an internal reliability and validity of the new scale. The frequency of personal and home-assistance care, type of accommodation, self-assessment of self-care and domestic activities were compared with the level of dependence in ADL and indicated external validity. This cumulative instrument of ADL can be used to describe and compare the level of disability in elderly populations and to define the need for personal assistance in home care among disabled persons.

Lay Abstract


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