Differences in the Progression of Disability: A U.S.-Mexico Comparison

Carlos Diaz-Venegas, Timothy A. Reistetter, Rebeca Wong

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    5 Scopus citations


    Objectives This article seeks to document the progression of disability in a developing country by implementing a model to examine how this process compares to a developed country. Methods Data come from the Mexican Health and Aging Study (MHAS), including a baseline survey in 2001 and a follow-up in 2003, and from the U.S. Health and Retirement Study (HRS), using the 2000 and 2002 waves. An ordinal logistic regression approach is used to examine a progression of disability that considers (a) no disability, (b) mobility problems, (c) mobility plus limitations with instrumental activities of daily living, (d) mobility plus limitations with activities of daily living (ADLs), (e) limitations in all three areas and (f) death. Results In both data sets, approximately 44% of the sample remained in the same level of disability at the 2-year follow-up. However, the progression of limitations with two disabilities differs by gender in the MHAS but is consistent for both men and women in the HRS. Discussion Our model reflects the importance of ADLs in the disablement process in Mexico. We speculate that the difference in lifetime risk profiles and cultural context might be responsible for the divergence in the progression of disability by gender.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)913-922
    Number of pages10
    JournalJournals of Gerontology - Series B Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences
    Issue number5
    StatePublished - Jun 14 2018


    • Gender differences
    • HRS
    • MHAS
    • Mexico
    • Progression of disability
    • USA

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Health(social science)
    • Sociology and Political Science
    • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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