Send to

Choose Destination
Biomed Environ Sci. 2009 Jun;22(3):179-87. doi: 10.1016/S0895-3988(09)60043-X.

Prevalence and related factors of falls among the elderly in an urban community of Beijing.

Author information

School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha 410078, Hunan, China.



To understand the prevalence, consequences and risk factors of falls among urban community-dwelling elderly in Beijing.


A cross-sectional study was conducted in Longtan Community, Beijing. A total of 1512 individuals aged 60 years or over were selected by stratified cluster sampling. Data regarding the frequency of falls in the previous year, as well as circumstances, consequence and related factors of falls were collected from the elderly through face-to-face interviews with questionnaires in their home.


The prevalence of falls was 18.0% on the average among 1512 participants, higher in women (20.1%) than in men (14.9%) (P = 0.006), and increased with age (chi2(for trend) = 10.37, P = 0.001). The total rate of falls-induced injuries among the fallers was 37.7%. Falls usually resulted in soft-tissues bruises (58.7%), fear of repeated episodes of falls (58.8%), loss of independence and confidence in movement (35.7%) and even in hip fracture. In addition to the burden of medical care, falls also generated a big economic burden. Occurrence of falls was significantly associated with both intrinsic and extrinsic factors. The related factors of falls in the elderly included age > or = 60-70 years, femininity, less physical activities, fear of future falls, living alone, severely impaired vision, health problem-impacted activities of daily living, chronic diseases (diabetes, hypertension, postural hypotension, stroke sequela, cataract, arthritis, dementia and depression), medications (psychoactive, anti-diabetic), gait imbalance, high bed and faintly-lighted stairway.


The prevalence of falls among urban community-dwelling elderly in Beijing is closely associated with significant associated with intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Efforts to prevent falls in the elderly should be made at community level.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center