Determinants socioeconomic factors for quality of life and depressive symptoms in community-dwelling older people: a cross-sectional study in Brazil and Portugal

Published: 7 December 2022| Version 2 | DOI: 10.17632/r4h9gvrrw2.2
, Bruno Araújo da Silva Dantas,


The study aimed to analyze the association between the socioeconomic profile and the Quality of Life (QoL) of elderly people with depressive symptoms assisted in Primary Health Care (PHC) in Brazil and Portugal. This is a comparative cross-sectional study with a non-probabilistic sample of elderly people from PHC in Brazil and Portugal, carried out between 2018 and 2018. To assess the variables of interest, a form containing socioeconomic data, the Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS- 15) and the Medical Outcomes Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36). We performed descriptive and multivariate analyzes to test the study hypothesis. The sample consisted of n=150 participants (Brazil n=100 and Portugal n=50). There was similarity in some variables of the socioeconomic profile of both groups, with predominance in the total sample of females (76.0% / p = 0.224) and of individuals aged between 65 and 80 years (88.0% - p = 0.594 ). However, in Brazil, less education (79.0%/ p = 0.001) and participants who did not live alone (86.0%/ p = 0.001) stood out. In Portugal, all participants had an income lower than the minimum wage (100.0% / p <0.001). There is also a predominance of symptoms in the group from Brazil (59.0%) (p=0.015 / OR= 1.81 - 95%CI= 1.12 – 2.81). When performing the multivariate association analysis between socioeconomic variables, presence of depressive symptoms and QoL, we selected and presented the most relevant results in Table 5. It is noted that the Mental Health domain was the domain that was most associated with socioeconomic variables. Among them, the female gender (p= 0.027), age group 65-80 years (p=0.042), marital status “without a partner” (p=0.029), education of up to 5 years (p=0.011) and income of up to 1 minimum wage (p=0.037). In all these variables, higher scores were observed in the group from Brazil. With higher scores in Portugal, the General Health Status domain was associated with female gender (p= 0.042) and education of up to 5 years (p=0.045). In addition, the physical aspect domain was associated with income of up to 1 minimum wage. The results revealed the existence of an association between the socioeconomic profile and the QoL in the presence of depressive symptoms. This association was observed mainly among females, low education and low income with aspects of QoL related to mental, physical and social health and self-perception of health. The group from Brazil had higher QoL scores compared to Portugal.



Universidade de Evora, Universidad Catolica San Antonio de Murcia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte


Gerontology, Depression, Socioeconomic Status


Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico

454771/2014-2, Call: MCTI/CNPQ/Universal 14/2014 - Belt B