Joint hypermobility is also associated with anxiety disorders in the elderly population

Andrea Bulbena-Cabré, Conxita Rojo, Guillem Pailhez, Emma Buron Maso, Luis Miguel Martín-Lopez, Antonio Bulbena

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8 Citations (Scopus)


Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Background: Anxiety disorders (AD) are very prevalent in the elderly, tend to compromise quality of life, and generate substantial costs. Considering that the prevention and early detection of anxiety may be relevant to increase health gains in older adults, it would be of great interest to identify whether the joint hypermobility syndrome (JHS) is also related to anxiety disorders in this age range. Methods: Cross-sectional data was collected in a sample of 108 subjects in a rural town in Spain. Instruments included Spielberger STAI, a modified Wolpe Fear Survey Schedule, General health Questionnaire (GHQ)-28, and the anxiety and mood disorders section of the SCID, to assess past year prevalence of anxiety disorders. JHS was evaluated by trained examiners using the “Hospital del Mar criteria”. Results: Among the 108 subjects (55% women, 45% men) over 60 years old, 21.3% meet criteria for JHS. These subjects scored significantly higher in both State (F = 5.53; p = 0.02) and Trait (F = 4.68; p = 0.03) anxiety and the GHQ 28 (F = 6.29; p = 0.01). Compared with non JHS subjects, they had more AD (34.8% vs. 11.8%; x2 = 6.90; p = 0.02) and mood disorders (30.4% vs. 10.6%; x2 = 5.65; p = 0.041) in the past year prevalence. A multiple logistic regression analysis showed that both JHS (β = 0.196; p = 0.04) and fears (β = 0.34; p = 0.001) are predictors of AD (r2 = 188; p = 0.001) in this population. Conclusions: Joint hypermobility syndrome is associated with anxiety in the elderly population, and it may be used as a physical marker for AD among subjects within this age range. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e113-e119
JournalInternational Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


  • anxiety
  • elderly
  • joint hypermobility
  • late life


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