Short physical performance battery in hospitalized older adults

Steve Fisher, Kenneth J. Ottenbacher, James S. Goodwin, James E. Graham, Glenn V. Ostir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


Background and aims: The objectives of this study were to determine if Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) information could be collected in a hospitalized older patient population, and to assess associations between SPPB scores and sociodemographic characteristics and clinical measures. Methods: A cross sectional design was used that included 90 adults aged 65 years or older admitted to an Acute Care for Elders unit. Patient information was collected within 24 hours of hospitalization. SPPB was scored using established criteria in older persons living in the community and revised criteria based on older persons hospitalized with acute illness. Results: The mean age was 75.3 (SD 7.1) years; 61% were women. The SPPB can be safely and reliably administered to hospitalized elderly patients. No injuries or adverse events occurred. Hospital SPPB scoring criteria better distributed the overall range of performance for older patients than community SPPB scoring criteria. In multivariate regression analyses, increasing age (p=0.007), length of stay (p=0.02), comorbidities (p=0.04), and cognition (p=0.02) were significantly and inversely associated with SPPB when scored using hospital based scoring criteria. Only age (p=0.02) was significantly associated with SPPB when using community based scoring criteria. Conclusions: This study showed that a SPPB can be reliably collected in hospitalized older patients. The study further suggests that hospital based SPPB scoring criteria may be more appropriate for an older patient population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)445-452
Number of pages8
JournalAging Clinical and Experimental Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2009


  • Aged
  • Function
  • Hospitalization
  • Lower body function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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