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Volume 44 Number 5 2007
Pages 685 — 692


Abstract - Relationship between self-reported function and disability and balance performance measures in the elderly

Itshak Melzer, PhD, PT;1* Ilan Kurz, MSc, PT;1 Orly Sarid, PhD;2 Alan M. Jette, PhD3

Departments of 1Physical Therapy, Faculty of Health Sciences, and 2Social Work, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel; 3Health and Disability Research Institute, Boston University, Boston, MA

Abstract — This study evaluated the reliability and validity of the Hebrew version of the Late-Life Function and Disability Instrument (LLFDI). Fifty-five older adults (mean age 79.7 +/- 5.2) participated. We calculated test-retest reliability with intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs). Partial correlations determined the construct validity with a balance measure (Berg Balance Scale [BBS]) and a mobility measure (Timed Up and Go [TUG] test). We examined known-group validity by comparing the scores of cane and noncane users. Test-retest ICCs ranged from good to excellent (0.77- 0.90) for the function component and fair to good for the disability component (0.63- 0.83), except for the disability management role subscale (0.46). BBS and TUG were associated with LLFDI overall function (r = 0.48, p < 0.001 and r = - 0.52, p < 0.001, respectively). TUG and BBS were weakly associated with disability limitations (r = - 0.26 and 0.32, respectively) and disability frequency (r = - 0.16 and 0.24, respectively). Cane users showed significantly lower function scores than noncane users. We demonstrated that the Hebrew version of the LLFDI reliably and validly assesses older adults' function and disability. The LLFDI is recommended as an outcome instrument in studies in which older adults' function and disability are outcomes of interest.

Key words: aging, balance, disability instrument, gait, Hebrew, late-life function, mobility, physical disability, physical functioning, rehabilitation.


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