(HealthDay)—About half of older intensive care unit (ICU) survivors have functional recovery within six months, with higher body mass index and functional self-efficacy associated with recovery, according to a study published in the Aug. 1 issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

Lauren E. Ferrante, M.D., from the Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn., and colleagues examined the incidence and time to recovery of premorbid function within six months of a critical illness in a sample of 218 ICU admissions from 186 ICU survivors. They examined the correlations with recovery for 21 potential predictors.

The researchers found that 52.3 percent of the 218 admissions had functional recovery. Higher index and greater functional self-efficacy, a measure of confidence in performing various activities, correlated with recovery in multivariable analysis (hazard ratios, 1.07 and 1.05, respectively). Pre-ICU impairment in hearing and vision correlated with a lack of recovery (hazard ratios, 0.38 and 0.59, respectively).

"Among older adults who survived an ICU admission with increased disability, pre-ICU hearing and vision impairment were strongly associated with poor functional recovery within six months, whereas higher and functional self-efficacy were associated with recovery," the authors write.