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BACKGROUND: Young adulthood is a critical life period for health and health behaviours. Related measurements collected before and after birth, and during childhood and adolescence can provide a life-course analysis of important factors that contribute to health and behaviour in young adulthood. The Western Australian Pregnancy Cohort (Raine) Study has collected a large number of such measurements during the fetal, perinatal, infancy, childhood and adolescence periods and plans to relate them to common health issues and behaviours in young adults, including spinal pain, asthma, sleep disorders, physical activity and sedentary behaviour and, work absenteeism and presenteeism. The aim of this paper is to describe the rationale, design and methods of the 22 year follow-up of the Raine Study cohort. METHODS/DESIGN: The Raine Study is a prospective cohort study. Participants still active in the cohort (n = 2,086) were contacted around the time of their 22nd birthday and invited to participate in the 22 year follow-up. Each was asked to complete a questionnaire, attend a research facility for physical assessment and an overnight sleep study, wear activity monitors for a week, and to maintain a sleep and activity diary over this week. The questionnaire was broad and included questions related to sociodemographics, medical history, quality of life, psychological factors, lifestyle factors, spinal pain, respiratory, sleep, activity and work factors. Physical assessments included anthropometry, blood pressure, back muscle endurance, tissue sensitivity, lung function, airway reactivity, allergic status, 3D facial photographs, cognitive function, and overnight polysomnography. DISCUSSION: Describing the prevalence of these health issues and behaviours in young adulthood will enable better recognition of the issues and planning of health care resources. Providing a detailed description of the phenotype of these issues will provide valuable information to help educate health professionals of the needs of young adults. Understanding the life-course risk factors of health issues and behaviours in young adulthood will have important health planning implications, supporting the development of targeted interventions to improve current health status and reduce the onset and development of further ill-health across adulthood.

Original publication




Journal article


BMC Public Health

Publication Date





Asthma, Blood Pressure, Body Weights and Measures, Cognition, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Health Behavior, Health Status, Humans, Life Style, Male, Prevalence, Prospective Studies, Quality of Life, Research Design, Respiratory Function Tests, Risk Factors, Sleep, Socioeconomic Factors, Surveys and Questionnaires, Western Australia, Young Adult