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Religion, spirituality, and health in medically ill hospitalized older patients.
J Am Geriatr Soc 2004; 52(4):554-62JA

Abstract

OBJECTIVES

To examine the effect of religion and spirituality on social support, psychological functioning, and physical health in medically ill hospitalized older adults.

DESIGN

Cross-sectional survey.

SETTING

Duke University Medical Center.

PARTICIPANTS

A research nurse interviewed 838 consecutively admitted patients aged 50 and older to a general medical service.

MEASUREMENTS

Measures of religion included organizational religious activity (ORA), nonorganizational religious activity, intrinsic religiosity (IR), self-rated religiousness, and observer-rated religiousness (ORR). Measures of spirituality were self-rated spirituality, observer-rated spirituality (ORS), and daily spiritual experiences. Social support, depressive symptoms, cognitive status, cooperativeness, and physical health (self-rated and observer-rated) were the dependent variables. Regression models controlled for age, sex, race, and education.

RESULTS

Religiousness and spirituality consistently predicted greater social support, fewer depressive symptoms, better cognitive function, and greater cooperativeness (P<.01 to P<.0001). Relationships with physical health were weaker, although similar in direction. ORA predicted better physical functioning and observer-rated health and less-severe illness. IR tended to be associated with better physical functioning, and ORR and ORS with less-severe illness and less medical comorbidity (all P<.05). Patients categorizing themselves as neither spiritual nor religious tended to have worse self-rated and observer-rated health and greater medical comorbidity. In contrast, religious television or radio was associated with worse physical functioning and greater medical comorbidity.

CONCLUSION

Religious activities, attitudes, and spiritual experiences are prevalent in older hospitalized patients and are associated with greater social support, better psychological health, and to some extent, better physical health. Awareness of these relationships may improve health care.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Psychiatry, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina 27710, USA. koenig@geri.duke.eduNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

15066070

Citation

Koenig, Harold G., et al. "Religion, Spirituality, and Health in Medically Ill Hospitalized Older Patients." Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, vol. 52, no. 4, 2004, pp. 554-62.
Koenig HG, George LK, Titus P. Religion, spirituality, and health in medically ill hospitalized older patients. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2004;52(4):554-62.
Koenig, H. G., George, L. K., & Titus, P. (2004). Religion, spirituality, and health in medically ill hospitalized older patients. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 52(4), pp. 554-62.
Koenig HG, George LK, Titus P. Religion, Spirituality, and Health in Medically Ill Hospitalized Older Patients. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2004;52(4):554-62. PubMed PMID: 15066070.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Religion, spirituality, and health in medically ill hospitalized older patients. AU - Koenig,Harold G, AU - George,Linda K, AU - Titus,Patricia, PY - 2004/4/7/pubmed PY - 2004/5/14/medline PY - 2004/4/7/entrez SP - 554 EP - 62 JF - Journal of the American Geriatrics Society JO - J Am Geriatr Soc VL - 52 IS - 4 N2 - OBJECTIVES: To examine the effect of religion and spirituality on social support, psychological functioning, and physical health in medically ill hospitalized older adults. DESIGN: Cross-sectional survey. SETTING: Duke University Medical Center. PARTICIPANTS: A research nurse interviewed 838 consecutively admitted patients aged 50 and older to a general medical service. MEASUREMENTS: Measures of religion included organizational religious activity (ORA), nonorganizational religious activity, intrinsic religiosity (IR), self-rated religiousness, and observer-rated religiousness (ORR). Measures of spirituality were self-rated spirituality, observer-rated spirituality (ORS), and daily spiritual experiences. Social support, depressive symptoms, cognitive status, cooperativeness, and physical health (self-rated and observer-rated) were the dependent variables. Regression models controlled for age, sex, race, and education. RESULTS: Religiousness and spirituality consistently predicted greater social support, fewer depressive symptoms, better cognitive function, and greater cooperativeness (P<.01 to P<.0001). Relationships with physical health were weaker, although similar in direction. ORA predicted better physical functioning and observer-rated health and less-severe illness. IR tended to be associated with better physical functioning, and ORR and ORS with less-severe illness and less medical comorbidity (all P<.05). Patients categorizing themselves as neither spiritual nor religious tended to have worse self-rated and observer-rated health and greater medical comorbidity. In contrast, religious television or radio was associated with worse physical functioning and greater medical comorbidity. CONCLUSION: Religious activities, attitudes, and spiritual experiences are prevalent in older hospitalized patients and are associated with greater social support, better psychological health, and to some extent, better physical health. Awareness of these relationships may improve health care. SN - 0002-8614 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/15066070/Religion_spirituality_and_health_in_medically_ill_hospitalized_older_patients_ L2 - https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/openurl?genre=article&amp;sid=nlm:pubmed&amp;issn=0002-8614&amp;date=2004&amp;volume=52&amp;issue=4&amp;spage=554 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -