Table 1. Characteristics of Study Participants From the Health and Retirement Study at Baseline
Total (n=2351)Survived (n=989)Died (n=1362)P Value
Background characteristics
 Age, median (IQR), y72.7 (11.3)68.9 (10.20)75.4 (11.2)<0.001
 Male44.445.243.80.511
 Non‐Hispanic black18.317.618.70.484
 Non‐Hispanic other race2.02.11.80.619
 Hispanic8.39.67.30.049
 Proxy interview19.19.526.1<0.001
 Lives in the South44.943.845.70.364
Marital status
 Never married3.22.63.50.220
 Continuously married35.441.730.80.002
 Remarried18.819.918.10.256
 Divorced11.013.89.0<0.001
 Widowed31.622.038.6<0.001
Marriage loss(es)
 No marital loss38.544.334.4<0.001
 1 marital loss48.842.153.7<0.001
 2+ marital losses12.613.711.90.206
Socioeconomic factors
 Years of education, mean (SD)11.4 (3.4)12.0 (3.2)11.0 (3.5)<0.001
 Median household income (IQR), $ thousand37.6 (157.0)51.1 (237.6)27.9 (36.9)<0.001
 No health insurance5.47.24.0<0.001
Psychosocial factors
 No children8.56.110.2<0.001
 No nearby friends and/or relatives22.124.720.30.011
 Never attends religious services25.124.925.30.801
 CES‐D depressive symptoms (0–8)2.2 (2.2)2.0 (2.2)2.4 (2.2)<0.001
Behavioral factors
 Current or former smoker62.261.163.00.342
 Drinks alcohol in excess14.216.512.40.004
 No vigorous exercise80.575.684.0<0.001
 Does not take HTN medication12.39.414.3<0.001
Physiological factors
 Underweight, BMI <18.53.21.24.7<0.001
 Overweight or obese, BMI ≥25.059.065.554.2<0.001
 ADL limitations (0–5)1.0 (1.6)0.5 (1.1)1.4 (1.8)<0.001
 Diagnosed chronic illness79.777.281.60.008
 Recurrent stroke20.519.021.6<0.001
  • ADL indicates activities of daily living; BMI, body mass index; CES‐D, Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale; HTN, hypertension; IQR, interquartile range.