Obese Older Adults Who Survive Cardiac Surgery May Have Increased Risk for Functioning Poorly
More than one-third of Americans are considered obese based on their Body Mass Index (BMI). (BMI measures the ratio between your height and weight. A BMI of 30 or above signals obesity.) As more and more of us age, we also are likely to see an increase in the number of older people who have a difficult time maintaining a healthy body weight. That’s a serious problem, since obesity can impact many parts of our health and daily life. For example, studies show people who are obese have more complications following heart surgery—an increasingly common surgery for older adults—than do people who are considered overweight (but not obese) or who maintain a “normal” weight.
Although we know that obese older adults may be surviving heart surgery with more complications, few researchers have studied how well they can manage daily activities like eating, bathing, walking short distances, dressing, getting in or out of bed, and using the toilet.
To learn more about this key issue, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania examined information from the University of Michigan Health and Retirement Study. They published their findings in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. Continue reading