Circadian disruption due to shift work may contribute significantly and act as preliminary markers for frailty. Gender difference in risk of frailty supports the significance of considering gender when addressing frailty and targeting interventions in old age. As population ages, increased awareness of shift work may contribute to better health outcomes.
To investigate the association between shift work exposure and frailty.
Longitudinal secondary data analyses were performed using Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging. Individuals aged 45 to 85 years were included at baseline (N = 47,740). Primary shift work (SW) variables were derived at baseline: ever exposed to SW, SW exposure in longest job, and SW exposure in current job. Multinomial regression models were constructed to evaluate the association between SW and frailty at 3 years of follow-up.
Participants ever exposed to SW were associated with frailty compared with those who worked only daytime. Particularly, females worked in rotating shifts in their longest jobs were more likely to be classified as frail compared with those who worked only daytime.
This study suggests that SW may play a role in development of frailty and this warrants further investigation.