Table 10Study Characteristics of Exercise/Physical Therapy Interventions to Prevent Falls (KQ 2)

For more details of each study see Appendix C Table 5

Study reference, Setting, USPSTF quality ratingN patients randomized, Age, Length of followupRisk category, % high risk# (%) fallers, # (%) frequent fallersHigh risk statusAdverse effects
Ashburn 200796

United Kingdom

Fair
Randomized: 142
IG: 70
CG: 72
Mean age (SD):
IG: 72.7 (9.6)
CG: 71.6 (8.8)
Followup: 6 mo
Risk category: Parkinson’s disease

Proportion: 100%
# (%) fallers:All are high riskNR
IGCG
8 wks37 (57)42 (66)
6 mo46 (73)49 (78)
# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
IGCG
8 wks21 (32)28 (44)
6 mo35 (56)42 (68)
Barnett 2003104

Australia

Fair
Randomized: 163
IG: 83
CG: 80
Mean age (SD):
IG: 74.4 (4.9)
CG: 75.4 (6.0)
Followup: 1 yr
Risk category: Gait and/or balance impairment

Proportion: 100%
# (%) fallers/nonfallers:
IG: 27 (35.5)
CG: 37 (50.0)
# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
IG: 8 (10.8)
CG: 18 (24.3)
All are high riskNR
Buchner 1997105

Buchner 1993106

United States

Fair
Randomized: 105 to FICSIT
IG (ET): 25
IG (ST): 25
IG (ET+ST): 25
CG: 30
Mean age:
IG(ET): 75
IG(ST): 75
IG(ET+ST): 74
CG: 75
Followup: 6 mo
Risk category: Other (balance and/or gait impairment)

Proportion: 100%
# (%) fallers:
Year 1
IG: 32 (42)
CG: 18 (60)

# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
NR
All are high riskNR
Campbell 199797

New Zealand

Fair
Randomized: 233
IG: 116
CG: 117
Mean age (SD):
IG: 84.1 (3.1)
CG: 84.1 (3.4)
Followup: 1 yr
Risk category: Unselected (authors describe as a high risk population because all are female)

Proportion: NA
# (%) fallers (calc):
IG: 53 (46)
CG: 62 (53)

# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
IG: 22 (19)
CG: 34 (29)
All are high riskNR
Campbell 1999112

New Zealand

Fair
(study also located in Clinical Mgmt)
Randomized: 93 (3 IGs)
OM + Ex: 21
CG: 24
Mean age (SD):
OM + Ex: 73.1 (6.3)
CG: 75.2 (5.6)
Followup: 44 wks
Risk category: Medication- specific (taking psychotropics)

Proportion: 100%
# (%) fallers: NR

# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
NR

(Fall rate per person-year and total # of falls reported)
All are high riskNR
Campbell 200563

New Zealand

Fair
(study also located in Home Hazard)
Randomized: 391 (3 IGs)
IG (Otago): 97
CG: 96
Mean age (SD):
IG (Otago): 83.4 (4.9)
CG: 84.0 (4.9)
Followup: 1 yr
Risk category: Eye diseases/visual impairment

Proportion: 100%
# (%) fallers:
IG (Otago): 47 (48)
CG: 59 (61)

# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
IG (Otago): 27 (28)
CG: 29 (30)
All are high riskNR
Day 200261

Australia

Fair
(study also located in Clinical Mgmt & Home Hazard)
Randomized: 1107 (7 IGs)
Continued: 1090
IG (ex): 135
CG: 137
Mean age (SD):
All: 76.1 (5.0)
Followup: 18 mo
Risk category: Unselected

Proportion: NA
# (%) fallers:
IG (ex): 76/135 (56.3)
CG: 87/137 (63.5)

# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
NR
NANR
Green 200294

United Kingdom

Fair
Randomized: 170
IG: 85
CG: 85
Mean age (SD):
IG: 71.5 (8.7)
CG: 73.5 (8.3)
Followup: 9 mo
Risk category:
Cerebrovascular disorder (stroke)

Proportion: 100%
# (%) fallers:All are high risk
IGCG
BL-3 months13 (16)809 (11)
3–6 months16 (22)15 (19)
6–9 months17 (24)10 (14)
Overall30 (35)23 (27)
# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
NR
Li 2005116

United States

Fair
Randomized: 256
IG: 125
CG: 131
Mean age (SD):
IG: 76.94 (4.69)
CG: 77.99 (5.14)
Followup: 1 yr
Risk category: Unselected

Proportion: NA
# (%) fallers:IGCGNANR
During27 (28)43 (46)
6 mo after15 (16)43 (46)
# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
IGCG
During7 (7)21 (22)
6 mo afterNRNR
Lord 1995108

Australia

Fair
Randomized: 374
IG: 187
CG: 187
Mean age (SD):
IG: 71.6 (5.5)
CG: 71.7 (5.3)
Followup: 1 yr
Risk category: Unselected

Proportion: NA
# (%) fallers:
IG: 26 (34.7)
CG: 33 (35.1)
# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
IG: 8 (10.7)
CG: 12 (12.8)
NANR
Luukinen 200793

Finland

Fair
Randomized: 486
IG: 243
CG: 243
Mean age (SD):
IG: 88 (3)
CG: 88 (3)
Followup: 16 mo
Risk category: Other (various)

Proportion: 100% had 1+ risk factors
# (%) fallers:
IG: 126 (58)
CG: 136 (62)

# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
NR
All are high riskNR
Morgan 2004113

United States

Fair
Randomized: 294
IG: 119
CG: 110
Lost before BL: 49
Incomplete data: 16 (IG: 8, CG: 8)
Mean age (SD):
IG: 81.0 (7.6)
CG: 80.1 (7.4)
Followup: 1 yr
Risk category: Other (recent hospitalization or bed rest)

Proportion: 100%
# (%) fallers:
IG: 34 (28.6)
CG: 34 (30.9)

# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
NR
All are high riskNR
Robertson 200195

New Zealand

Fair
Randomized: 240
IG: 121
CG: 119
Mean age (SD):
IG: 80.8 (3.8)
CG: 81.1 (4.5)
Followup: 1 yr
Risk category: Unselected

Proportion: NA
# (%) fallers: NR
# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
NR

(Fall rate per person-year and total # of falls reported)
NAOne participant fell while exercising as instructed
Rubenstein 2000100

United States

Fair
Randomized: 59
IG: 31
CG: 28
Mean age (SD):
IG: 76.4 (4.9)
CG: 74.4 (43.4)*
*Reported SD appears to be a typo
Followup: 12 wks
Risk category: Gait and/or balance impairment

Proportion: 100%
# (%) fallers:
IG: 12 (38.7)
CG: 9 (32.1)

# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
NR
All are high riskNR
Voukalatos 2007115

Australia

Good
Randomized: 702
IG: 353
CG: 349
Mean age (SD): 69 (6.5)
IG: 69
CG: 69
Followup: 6 mo
Risk category: Unselected

Proportion: NA
# (%) fallers:IGCGNANR
16 wks61 (17.6)70 (20.8)
24 wks71 (20.5)81 (24.0)
# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
IGCG
16 wks8 (2.3)13 (3.9)
24 wks15 (4.3)27 (8.0)
Wolf 1996107

United States

Fair
Randomized: 200
IG(TC): 72
IG(BT): 64
CG: 64
Mean age (SD):
IG(TC): 76.9 (4.8)
IG(BT): 76.3 (5.1)
CG: 75.4 (4.1)
Followup: 4 mo
Risk category: Unselected

Proportion: NA
# (%) fallers: NR

# (%) frequent fallers (2+ falls):
NR

(Total # of falls reported)
NANA

N – number; # – number; % – percent; USPSTF – U.S. Preventive Services Task Force; IG – intervention group; CG – control group; SD – standard deviation; NR – not reported; NA – not applicable; BL – baseline; FICSIT – Frailty and Injuries: Cooperative Studies of Intervention Techniques; ET – endurance training; ST – strength training; OM – original medication; Ex – exercise; TC – Tai Chi; BT – balance training

From: 3, Results

Cover of Interventions to Prevent Falls in Older Adults
Interventions to Prevent Falls in Older Adults: An Updated Systematic Review [Internet].
Evidence Syntheses, No. 80.
Michael YL, Lin JS, Whitlock EP, et al.

NCBI Bookshelf. A service of the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.