A “sub-study” takes place when researchers using the 45 and Up Study choose to look more closely at a specific area and enhance the information already collected by gathering more data from participants.
If you are invited to take part in a sub-study you might be asked to fill in another questionnaire or be interviewed by a researcher. Participation in sub-studies is voluntary. You can decline to participate in a sub-study but still remain a participant in the 45 and Up Study.
To date, there have been 15 sub-studies involving 45 and Up participants. Check your Participant Toolkit for updates on new sub-studies. If you have a question about participating in a sub-study, please refer to the relevant participant information documents below, or contact the 45 and Up coordinating centre. For a list of research projects under way using 45 and Up (including sub-studies), please visit the research projects page.
Collecting cancer statistics in NSW study
Recurrence or progression of a cancer is a marker of how effective treatment has been. Monitoring cancer recurrence or progression is important for gaining early information on the benefits of treatment and the effect of changes in treatment policy or guidelines, plus it is used to plan and evaluate treatment services. Unfortunately it is difficult to measure and is not collected routinely in cancer registry statistics. The ’Collecting Cancer Statistics in NSW’ study aims to determine if cancer recurrence or progression can be identified using several linked data sets, including the 45 and Up Study and the NSW Cancer Registry. Once people eligible for the study have been identified, they will be contacted and asked to complete a short questionnaire plus provide the contact details for their doctor (oncologist) to confirm their cancer information. We need to contact people who had a cancer that recurred and also those who had a cancer but it did not recur, to validate our results.
Adult Whooping Cough study
Pertussis (whooping cough) is one of the most poorly controlled vaccine preventable diseases, both in Australia and many other countries around the world, and despite widespread childhood vaccination programs, outbreaks continue to occur every few years. Pertussis in young children is a well recognised public health problem, however it is less well known that pertussis is also common among older adults.
The impact of pertussis on adult health is substantial and a significant proportion of the elderly with a diagnosis are subsequently hospitalised. There is limited data on vaccine effectiveness to inform policymakers regarding who should be most cost-effectively targeted for vaccination.
By comparing people who have had pertussis with those who have not, this research project aims to identify the effectiveness of the pertussis vaccine in older adult populations against the occurrence of pertussis, hospitalisation for respiratory illness and other health outcomes.
Invited participants will be asked to complete a brief questionnaire (asking particularly about whooping cough diagnoses; immunisation and other risk factors for disease) and provide their general practitioner (GP) details so that GPs can be contacted to confirm this information.
Maintain your brain
Dementia affects approximately 44 million people worldwide. As the population ages, the prevalence of dementia is increasing. The Maintain Your Brain (MYB) research project is a trial of multiple online interventions designed to target modifiable risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in people aged 55-75 years. Risk factors to be addressed are physical inactivity, cognitive inactivity, depression, overweight and obesity, and poor diet.
Specifically, this research project aims to:
- develop an eHealth platform that delivers interventions over the internet
- determine the efficacy of the eHealth platform to reduce the rate of cognitive decline in people without dementia
- determine the efficacy of the eHealth platform to delay the onset of dementia
- examine the cost-effectiveness of the program.
The research project includes 3 phases: validation, pilot and main. You may be invited to participate in any of these phases.
Women’s Self-Care Strategies Project
In recent times there has been an exponential rise in interest in and use of self-care, particularly amongst women. In this project, drawing on a large sample of women suffering from chronic illnesses, the researchers will provide critical insight into women’s self-care practices and structures of disadvantage. This project will be the first worldwide to document previously ‘hidden’ self-care practices, providing a new framework for understanding and promoting women’s health and wellbeing in the context of chronic illness.
Specifically, this study aims to:
- Systematically map self-care practices by Australian women
- Provide insight into how their self-care practices are mediated by individual biographies and structural inequalities.
NB: self-care refers to activities undertaken for “enhancing health, preventing disease, limiting illness, and restoring health” (WHO 2009), principally or solely directed by the individual (i.e. minimal practitioner involvement).
Men’s Perspectives on Falls and Preventing Falls
Falls are a significant and growing public health concern among older people, affecting both men and women. Older women are at greater risk of falls than older men and experience more fall-related injury, while older men have higher fall-related mortality.
Fall prevention programs, such as Stepping On, which challenge older people to realistically appraise their risk of falling and gain knowledge about and incorporate safe practices into their everyday lives, have been shown to be effective in both reducing falls and the negative consequences of falls.
However, women are much more likely than men to engage in fall prevention programs, and so, to gain the benefits of participating in these programs. Little research has been done to date which specifically considers men’s perspectives on falls and preventing falls, their awareness of fall prevention programs, or their perceptions of, and/or experiences with programs such as Stepping On.
This project is looking at the experiences of men who have had a recent fall, what they did as a result of having the fall and what they think about preventing falls. This information will assist program developers and coordinators to adjust and adapt fall prevention programs to better meet the needs and interests of older men and thereby improve the accessibility and acceptability of these programs. Invited participants are asked to complete a telephone interview with the researchers, lasting approximately 30-60 minutes.
Sexual Wellbeing and Quality of Life after Prostate Cancer
This project has invited a sample of men who indicated that they have, or have had, prostate cancer to participate in an online survey. A hard copy of the survey is also available if preferred. The results will provide the research team with an understanding of the specific experiences and needs of heterosexual and non-heterosexual men with prostate cancer. This information and knowledge will be used to inform health care providers to deliver tailored interventions and facilitate ongoing support to heterosexual, gay and bisexual men with prostate cancer and prevent difficulties and distress with sexual wellbeing post-cancer.
Patients’ Experiences Project
The Patients’ Experiences Project is a large scale project for 20,000 participants in the 45 and Up Study who have been in hospital in NSW at any time between 1 January and 30 June 2014. It aims to describe patients’ experiences in NSW hospitals and, in more detail, the experiences of patients who had a healthcare incident during their hospital stay. We want to know what types of incidents occur, how often and how they are handled.
The project will also look at how the experiences of patients who had a healthcare incident compare with those who did not, so participants are asked to complete the questionnaire even if they did not have a healthcare incident.
The project will make recommendations to improve the way that healthcare incidents are managed.
“Successful Transition to a Healthy Retirement” Project
This study looked at the process of how and when people transition into retirement. As the Baby Boomer generation moves into retirement, their patterns of work, leisure and overall adjustment are likely to be different to those of earlier generations. Therefore, it is important to understand what factors are associated with healthy and enjoyable retirements in order to provide the best support and opportunities to maximise people’s ability to adjust to changing needs and environments.
Life Histories and Health Project
This project targeted 60-64-year-olds to investigate how family, work, housing and health experiences earlier in life influence health, productivity and wellbeing for people in late middle-age.
Gaining an understanding of health risks and protective factors over this time will inform public health programs to prevent and respond to chronic disease and other major health challenges.
Skin Health Study
This study aimed to improve our understanding of how sun, lifestyle and viruses can together cause skin cancer. It is a study of the common skin cancers, basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC).
Housing and Independent Living (HAIL) Project
The HAIL Project aimed to determine how people’s homes and surrounding environments support them to live independently as they grow older.
Social, Economic and Environmental Factors (SEEF) Project
This project aimed to identify how social, economic and environmental factors influence the health and wellbeing of our population in mid to later life.
Diabetes Risk Factor Survey
This survey aimed to identify how Australians manage risk factors for diabetes and cardiovascular disease and how these impact on their health and wellbeing.
This project is an extension of the 45 and Up Study that aimed to collect further information and blood samples from those people taking part. These will be used for approved research projects investigating factors affecting the health of Australians in mid to later life. They may be used to look at a wide range of factors able to be measured in blood such as cholesterol, antibodies and blood sugars.
Depression and cardiovascular disease are common in our community and often present together. The object of this research study was to investigate the effectiveness of an evidence-based internet program for depressive symptoms in patients being treated for cardiovascular disease.