Objectives: We examined correlations between number and gender of offspring and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and quality of life (QoL) in older adults. Setting: We used data from the 2006-2012 data sets of the Korean Longitudinal Study of Aging. Participants: There were 10 242, 8680, 7907 and 7480 participants in 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2012, respectively. Interventions: Number and gender of offspring. Primary and secondary outcome measures: We measured participants' QoL and HRQoL using a visual analogue scale developed by the Korea Labour Institute and which is similar to the EQ-VAS, a European measure. Results: We estimated the HRQoL and QoL of individuals with offspring. Estimates for the HRQoL and QoL of parents with no offspring were -7.762 and -9.384, respectively (both p<0.0001) versus parents with two offspring. For parents with five or more offspring, the estimates for the HRQoL and QoL were -1.529 and 0.885, respectively (p<0.001 and p<0.017, respectively) compared with parents with two offspring. For fathers with no offspring compared with fathers with two offspring, the estimates for the HRQoL and QoL were -6.143 and -7.492, respectively (both p<0.0001). Conclusions: These results suggest that number of offspring is associated with both HRQoL and QoL. Those with no offspring showed the lowest HRQoL and QoL. Although having five or more children had positive associations with QoL, it had negative associations with HRQoL. Public health services for those with poor quality of life should provide effective support programmes and services based on these findings.
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