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Age-related fall risk characteristics in Japanese community-dwelling elderly

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DOI: 10.4236/ojepi.2013.32006    3,673 Downloads   5,439 Views  

ABSTRACT

This study aimed to determine age-related fall risk characteristics among 2324 Japanese community-dwelling elderly through comparisons between young-old and old-old populations. Fall risk characteristics associated with “physical function”, “disease and physical symptom”, “behavior and character”, and “environment” were evaluated, and whether each individual has a high-risk symptom for each risk factor was assessed. The frequencies of individuals for all 16 risk types, which were determined by a combination of the four risk factors, were calculated. The prevalence of each risk type and the incidence of falling in each risk type were calculated within the young-old and old-old groups, and significant differences between these percentages were examined using the chi-square test. The prevalence of the no high-risk symptom group was significantly lower in the old-old group (17.0%) than in the young-old group (45.2%). Although there was no significant difference in the prevalence of the single high-risk symptom group, the prevalence of the two or more high-risk symptom groups was significantly higher in the old-old group. The incidence of fall among the elderly with high-risk symptoms did not change with age, although the incidence of fall with no high-risk symptom increased in the old-old group. Furthermore, high prevalence was observed in risk types with high-risk symptoms for “physical function” and “behavior and character”, particularly in the symptoms of gait, going up and down stairs, and fear of falling. These age-related differences are interesting and meaningful.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Sato, S. , Demura, S. , Sato, T. and Takahashi, K. (2013) Age-related fall risk characteristics in Japanese community-dwelling elderly. Open Journal of Epidemiology, 3, 33-39. doi: 10.4236/ojepi.2013.32006.

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