This study explores the impact of multimorbidity and types of chronic diseases on self-rated memory in older adults in the United States. Data were drawn from the 2011 wave of the National Health and Aging Trends Study (NHATS, N = 6,481). Logistic regressions were used to examine the associations between multimorbidity and types of chronic diseases and fair/poor self-rated memory. Compared to respondents with no or one chronic disease, respondents with multimorbidity showed 35% higher odds of reporting fair/poor self-rated memory. Also, stroke, osteoporosis, and arthritis were identified as increasing the odds of reporting fair/poor self-rated memory by 41%, 20%, and 30%, respectively. Demonstrating the importance of both multimorbidity and types of chronic diseases in self-reporting of memory, our findings suggest the need to educate older adults with multimorbidity and certain types of diseases regarding negative self-rated memory and its consequences.
The full study is available in Research on Aging.