Physical health problems among the geriatric population in Perambalur municipality, Tamil Nadu: a community-based cross-sectional study

Karthikeyan Kulothungan, Tamilarasan M., D. Rock Britto, T. SriRanganathan, V. SriAndaal


Background: Aging is a complex process that occurs by an increase in cellular injury that occurs at the biological level over a period. These injuries lead to decline in the capacity of the individual due to a gradual reduction in physiological reserves. The objectives of the study were to estimate the prevalence of common physical health problems and to assess the effect of aging influencing them among the geriatric population.

Methods: A community-based cross-sectional study was conducted in 9 randomly selected wards among 400 elderly subjects of aged 60 years or above by using probability proportionate to size (PPS) sampling method in urban residents of Perambalur municipality, Perambalur district, Tamil Nadu using semi structured questionnaire. Data entry and analysis was done using SPSS version 16.0.

Results: The mean age of the study population was 71.28±7.85. Three-fourths of the study subjects were not doing any work and the majority of them (80%) was living with family members and looked after by their family members (88%). In our study, it was found that the most prevalent common physical health problem among the geriatric population was dental diseases (85.75%) followed by diseases of the locomotor system (81.75%). Almost 99% of the elderly have at least a single system involvement.

Conclusions: The preventive and rehabilitative services planned by the government have to be elder-friendly. To improve the health status of the elderly various health schemes, policies and programs can be designed based on the study findings.



Aging, Physical health problems, Locomotor system, Dental diseases

Full Text:



Shankar R, Tondon J, Gambhir IS, Tripathi CB. Health Status of Elderly Population in Rural Area of Varanasi District. Indian J Public Health. 2007;51:92-4.

A Study on Quality of Life of Elderly Population in Mettupalayam, A Rural Area of Abstract : 2012;1(3):139–43.

Dasgupta A, Ray D, Roy S, Sarkar T, Ghosal A, Das A, et al. Depression among the Geriatric Population is a Matter of Concern : A Community Based Study in a Rural Area of West Bengal. Nepal J Epidemiol. 2013;3(4):282–7.

Abdulraheem IS, Oladipo AR, Amodu MO. Prevalence and Correlates of Physical Disability and Functional Limitation among Elderly Rural Population in Nigeria. J Aging Res. 2011;2011:1–13.

Woo E, Han C, Jo SA, Park MK, Kim S, Kim E, et al. Morbidity and related factors among elderly people in South Korea : results from the Ansan Geriatric (AGE) cohort study. BMC Public Health. 2007;9:1–9.

Ceschia A. Health in an ageing world — what do we know ? Lancet. 2015;385:484–6.

Alam M, James KS, Giridhar G, Sathyanarayana KM, Kumar S, Raju SS, et al. Report on the Status of Elderly in Selected States of India, 2011. Building a Knowledge Base on Population Ageing in India. New Delhi, India; 2012.

Rahul P, Choudhary SK, Singh US. A study of morbidity pattern among geriatric population in an urban area of Udaipur, Rajasthan. Indian J community Med. 2004;29(1):35–40.

Maulik S, Dasgupta A. Depression and its determinants in the rural elderly of WestBengal -a cross sectional study. Int J Biol Med Res. 2012;2(4):1299–302.

Lena A, Ashok K, Padma M, Kamath V, Kamath A. Health and Social Problems of the Elderly : A Cross-Sectional Study in Udupi Taluk, Karnataka. Indian J Community Med. 2009;34(2):131–4.

Kumar SG, Majumdar A, Pavithra G. Quality of Life (QOL) and Its Associated Factors Using WHOQOL-BREF Among Elderly in Urban Puducherry, India. J Clin Diagnostic Res. 2014;8(1):54–7.

Sharma D, Parashar A, Mazta SR. Functional status and its predictor among elderly population in a hilly state of North India. Int J Heal Allied Sci. 2014;3(3):159–63.

Srinivasan K, Vaz M, Thomas T. Prevalence of health related disability among community dwelling urban elderly from middle socioeconomic strata in Bangaluru, India. Indian J Med Res. 2010;4:515–21.

Lahariya C, Khandekar J, Pradhan SK. Effect of Impairment and Disability on Health- Related Quality of Life of Elderly : A Community- Based Study from Urban India. 2012;37(4):18–21.

Sherina M sidik, Lekhraj R, Mustaqim A. Physical and mental health problems of the elderly in a rural community of Sepang, Selangor. Malaysian J Med Sci. 2004;11(1):52–9.

Bhatia SPS, Swami HM, Thakur JS, Bhatia V. A Study of Health Problems and Loneliness Among the Elderly in Chandigarh. Indian J Community Med. 2007;32(4):255–8.

Dutta S, Basu M, Das P, Dasgupta A. Morbidity Profile and Hidden Psychiatric Disorders Among Geriatric Women in a Village of West Bengal. Int J Trop Med. 2012;7(1):38–41.

Ingle GK, Nath A. Geriatric Health in India : Concerns and Solutions. Indian J Community Med. 2008;33(4):214–8.

Joshi K, Kumar R, Avasthi A. Morbidity profile and its relationship with disability and psychological distress among elderly people in Northern India. Int J Epidemiol. 2003;32(6):978–87.

Padda AS, Mohan V, Singh J, Deepti S, Singh G, Dhillon H. Health profile of aged person in urban and rural field practices area of Medical College. Indian J Community Med. 2018;23(2):72.

Gebreyohannis B, Kharel K. Needs assessment for assisted living facilities among elderly population. 2012;8:43.