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Influence of fall environment and fall direction on risk of injury among pre-frail and frail adults


Gratza, S K; Chocano-Bedoya, P O; Orav, E J; Fischbacher, M; Freystätter, G; Theiler, R; Egli, A; Kressig, R W; Kanis, J A; Bischoff-Ferrari, H A (2019). Influence of fall environment and fall direction on risk of injury among pre-frail and frail adults. Osteoporosis International, 30(11):2205-2215.

Abstract

Summary
In this prospective study, half of all falls resulted in injury. Pre-frail adults sustained more injuries, while more frail adults had injuries requiring hospitalization or fractures. Pre-frail adults fell more often when in movement compared with frail adults who fell more often when standing and in indoor public spaces.
Purpose
To assess prospectively how fall environment and direction are related to injury among pre-frail and frail adults.
Methods
We included 200 community-dwelling adults with a prior fall (pre-frail, mean age 77 years) and 173 adults with acute hip fracture (frail, mean age 84 years; 77% community-dwelling). Falls were prospectively recorded using standardized protocols in monthly intervals, including date, time, fall direction and environment, and injury. We used logistic regression to assess the odds of injury adjusting for age, body mass index (BMI), and gender.
Results
We recorded 513 falls and 331 fall-related injuries (64.5%) among the 373 participants. While the fall rate was similar between groups, pre-frail adults had more injuries (71% among pre-frail vs. 56% among frail, p = 0.0004) but a lower incidence of major injuries (9% among pre-frail vs. 27% among frail, p = 0.003). Pre-frail adults fell more often while in movement (84% among pre-frail vs. 55% among frail, p < 0.0001), and frail adults fell more often while standing (26% vs. 15% respectively, p = 0.01). The odds of injury among frail adults was increased 3.3-fold when falling sideways (OR = 3.29, 95% CI = 1.68–6.45) and 2.4-fold when falling in an indoor public space (OR = 2.35, 95% CI = 1.00–5.53), and was reduced when falling at home (OR = 0.55, 95% CI = 0.31–0.98). The odds of injury among pre-frail adults was not influenced by environment and was 53% lower when falling backwards (OR = 0.47, 95% CI = 0.26–0.82).
Conclusion
While pre-frail adults sustain more fall-related injuries, frail adults were more likely to sustain major injuries, especially when falling sideways or outside their home.

Abstract

Summary
In this prospective study, half of all falls resulted in injury. Pre-frail adults sustained more injuries, while more frail adults had injuries requiring hospitalization or fractures. Pre-frail adults fell more often when in movement compared with frail adults who fell more often when standing and in indoor public spaces.
Purpose
To assess prospectively how fall environment and direction are related to injury among pre-frail and frail adults.
Methods
We included 200 community-dwelling adults with a prior fall (pre-frail, mean age 77 years) and 173 adults with acute hip fracture (frail, mean age 84 years; 77% community-dwelling). Falls were prospectively recorded using standardized protocols in monthly intervals, including date, time, fall direction and environment, and injury. We used logistic regression to assess the odds of injury adjusting for age, body mass index (BMI), and gender.
Results
We recorded 513 falls and 331 fall-related injuries (64.5%) among the 373 participants. While the fall rate was similar between groups, pre-frail adults had more injuries (71% among pre-frail vs. 56% among frail, p = 0.0004) but a lower incidence of major injuries (9% among pre-frail vs. 27% among frail, p = 0.003). Pre-frail adults fell more often while in movement (84% among pre-frail vs. 55% among frail, p < 0.0001), and frail adults fell more often while standing (26% vs. 15% respectively, p = 0.01). The odds of injury among frail adults was increased 3.3-fold when falling sideways (OR = 3.29, 95% CI = 1.68–6.45) and 2.4-fold when falling in an indoor public space (OR = 2.35, 95% CI = 1.00–5.53), and was reduced when falling at home (OR = 0.55, 95% CI = 0.31–0.98). The odds of injury among pre-frail adults was not influenced by environment and was 53% lower when falling backwards (OR = 0.47, 95% CI = 0.26–0.82).
Conclusion
While pre-frail adults sustain more fall-related injuries, frail adults were more likely to sustain major injuries, especially when falling sideways or outside their home.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Geriatric Medicine
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
Uncontrolled Keywords:Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
Language:English
Date:1 November 2019
Deposited On:18 Dec 2019 15:41
Last Modified:29 Jul 2020 11:58
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0937-941X
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00198-019-05110-7
PubMed ID:31377914

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