Associations of chronic illnesses and socio-demographic factors with health-related quality of life of older adults in Nigeria: A cross-sectional study

  • Joel O. Faronbi Department of Nursing Science, College of Health Science, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria
  • Aishat O. Ajadi Department of Nursing Science, College of Health Science, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria
  • Robbert J. Gobbens
Keywords: Chronic illness; Health-Related Quality of Life; Older adults; Socio-demographic factors


Background: The increase in life expectancy has brought about a higher prevalence of chronic illnesses among older people.
Objectives: To identify common chronic illnesses among older adults, to examine the influence of such conditions on their Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQoL), and to determine factors predicting their HRQoL.
Method: A population-based cross-sectional study was conducted involving 377 individuals aged 60 years and above who were selected using multi-stage sampling techniques in Olorunda Local Government, Osun State, Nigeria. Data were collected using an interviewer-administered questionnaire comprising socio-demographic characteristics, chronic illnesses, and the World Health Organization quality of life instrument (WHOQOL-BREF) containing physical health, psychological, social relationships, and environmental domains.
Results: About half (51.5%) of the respondents reported at least one chronic illness which has lasted for 1–5 years (43.3%). The prevalence of hypertension was 36.1%, diabetes 13.9% and arthritis 13.4%. Respondents with chronic illness had significantly lower HRQoL overall and in the physical health, social relationships and the environmental domains (all p<0.05) compared to those without a chronic illness. Factors that predicted HRQoL include age, marital status, level of education, the presence of chronic illness and prognosis of the condition.
Conclusion: This study concluded that chronic illness is prevalent in Nigerian older people and significantly influence their HRQoL. Age, marital status, and level of education were associated with HRQoL in this group.
Keywords: Chronic illness, Health-Related Quality of Life, Older adults, Socio-demographic factors
Funding: Postdoctoral fellowship from Consortium for Advanced Research Training in Afric


Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 0016-9560