Risk Patterns and Mortality in Postmenopausal Women Using Latent Class Analysis


      Although risk factors often co-occur, previous studies examining lifestyle or psychosocial factors often treat these factors as individual predictors of health. This study aims to identify the underlying subgroups of women characterized by distinct lifestyle and psychosocial risk patterns and to investigate the prospective associations between risk patterns and mortality among postmenopausal women.


      A total of 64,812 postmenopausal women aged 50–79 years without prevalent diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer at baseline (1993–1998) were followed until 2019 with a mean follow-up duration of 14.6 (SD=6.4) years. Latent class analysis was used to identify the latent classes of women with homogeneous combinations of lifestyle and psychosocial variables and to test whether the classes were prospectively associated with mortality. Analyses were stratified by race/ethnicity and were performed in 2020.


      A total of 4 latent classes (Healthy Lifestyle and Psychosocial, Risky Psychosocial, Risky Lifestyle, and Risky Lifestyle and Risky Psychosocial) were identified for Hispanic, Black, and White women, and 2 classes (High Risk or Low Risk) were identified for American Indian and Asian women. Women in the Risky Lifestyle and Risky Psychosocial group had the highest hazard ratios for all outcomes studied for all race/ethnicity groups than those in the Healthy Lifestyle and Psychosocial group, followed by those in the Risky Lifestyle group. Risky Psychosocial class was significantly associated with an elevated risk of overall and cardiovascular disease mortality only in Black women.


      The class with concurrent risky lifestyle and psychosocial factors conveyed the greatest risk of all types of mortality than a low-risk ref group. Health promotion should address both behavioral and psychosocial risks concurrently.
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