Function and medical comorbidity in south Texas nursing home residents: Variations by ethnic group

Cynthia D. Mulrow, Laura K. Chiodo, Meghan B. Gerety, Shuko Lee, Srabashi Basu, Deanna Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To evaluate differences in functional status and burdens of medical conditions in Mexican American and non-Hispanic white nursing home residents. DESIGN AND SETTING: Cross-sectional survey of 17 nursing homes in south Texas. PARTICIPANTS: A total of 617 older nursing home residents, of whom 366 were Mexican American and 251 were non-Hispanic white. MEASURES: Activities of Daily Living (ADL) status abstracted from standard nurses notes and Burden of Disease abstracted from medical records. RESULTS: Mexican American residents had greater numbers of ADL dependencies and poorer overall ADL scores than non-Hispanic white residents. This poor functioning was not explained by age, gender, or marital or educational status. The average number of medical conditions was greater, and specific conditions, such as cerebrovascular disease, recent acute infections, diabetes, hypertension, and anemia, were more common in Mexican American residents compared with non- Hispanic white residents. In models relating function with medical conditions and ethnic group, ADL scores and dependencies were significantly related to bowel and bladder incontinence, cerebrovascular disease, dementia, recent infections, and skin decubiti, but not to ethnic group. CONCLUSION: Mexican American nursing home residents are more functionally dependent than non- Hispanic white residents. The difference in function is explained by a greater burden of medical conditions in the Mexican American residents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)279-284
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the American Geriatrics Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


Dive into the research topics of 'Function and medical comorbidity in south Texas nursing home residents: Variations by ethnic group'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this