Association of coexistence of frailty and depressive symptoms with mortality in community-dwelling older adults: Kashiwa Cohort Study

Shota Hamada*, Yui Sasaki, Bo Kyung Son, Tomoki Tanaka, Weida Lyu, Rumiko Tsuchiya-Ito, Satomi Kitamura, Alex Dregan, Matthew Hotopf, Masao Iwagami, Katsuya Iijima

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Objectives: This study aimed to determine the longitudinal associations of the coexistence of frailty and depressive symptoms with mortality among older adults. Methods: The study participants were community-dwelling older adults aged ≥65 years who participated in the baseline survey of the Kashiwa Cohort Study in Japan in 2012. We used Fried's frailty phenotype criteria to classify participants as non-frail (score = 0), pre-frail (1 or 2), or frail (≥3). Depressive symptoms were assessed using the GDS-15 (≥6 points). Cox proportional hazards models were used to evaluate the association of co-occurring frailty and depressive symptoms with all-cause mortality, after adjusting for sociodemographic and clinical characteristics. Results: The study included 1920 participants, including 810 non-frail, 921 pre-frail, and 189 frail older adults, of which 9.0 %, 15.7 %, and 36.0 %, respectively, had depressive symptoms. Ninety-one (4.7 %) participants died during the average follow-up period of 4.8 years. Compared with non-frail participants without depressive symptoms, frail participants had greater adjusted hazard ratios for mortality: 2.47 (95 % CI, 1.16 to 5.25) for frail participants without depressive symptoms and 4.34 (95 % CI, 1.95 to 9.65) for frail participants with depressive symptoms. However, no statistically significant associations were observed in non-frail or pre-frail participants irrespective of depressive symptoms. Conclusion: Frail older adults with depressive symptoms have a substantially greater risk of mortality. Screening for depressive symptoms and frailty in older adults should be incorporated into health checkups and clinical practice to identify high-risk populations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105322
Early online date4 Jan 2024
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2024


  • Depression
  • Depressive symptoms
  • Frailty
  • Mortality


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