we use data from a population-based cohort of elderly brazilians to assess predictors of hospitalizations during ten years of follow-up. participants were 1,448 persons aged 60 years and over at baseline (1997). the outcome was self-reported number of hospitalizations per year. slightly more than a fifth (23%) experienced no hospitalizations during the 10 year follow-up. about 30% had 1-2 events, 31% had between 3 and 7 events, and about 18% had 8 or more events during this time. results of multivariable hurdle and cox proportional hazards models showed that the risk of hospitalization was positively associated with male sex, increased age, chronic conditions, and visits to the doctors in the previous 12 months. underweight was a predictor of any hospitalization, while obesity was an inconsistent predictor of hospitalization.