Musculoskeletal complaints (MSC) are common in the general population, causing a major disease burden to the individual and society. The association between MSC and mortality is still unclear. To our knowledge, no study has hitherto evaluated the association between MSC onset within the last month (incident MSC) on the one hand, and all-cause and causespecific mortality on the other.
This prospective population-based cohort study was done using data from the second Nord-Trøndelag Health Study (HUNT2) linked with data from a comprehensive national registry of cause of death. A total of 25,931 participants at risk for incident MSC were included. Hazard ratios (HR) of mortality were estimated for participants with incident MSC using Cox regression based on a mean of 14.1 years of follow-up.
Participants who reported incident MSC did not have an excess mortality compared to those with no MSC in the analyses of all-cause mortality (HR 0.99, 95% CI 0.89±1.10) and cause specific mortality. This was true also after adjustment for several potential confounding factors. No clear association between the number of MSC body sites and mortality was found.
Incident MSC were not associated with an increased mortality, neither for all-cause mortality, nor cause-specific mortality.
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