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Age Ageing. 2011 Sep;40(5):595-601. doi: 10.1093/ageing/afr067. Epub 2011 Jul 2.

Ethnicity and falls in older men: low rate of falls in Italian-born men in Australia.

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Sydney School of Public Health, University of Sydney, Edward Ford Building (A27), Sydney, New South Wales 2006, Australia.



past research suggests that fall rates in older persons may differ by ethnicity. The aim of this study was to compare the incidence of falls between older male Italian-born immigrants and their Australian-born counterparts.


this study analysed data from 335 Italian-born and 848 Australian-born men aged 70 years and over participating in the Concord Health and Ageing in Men Project (CHAMP). Prospective falls data were collected by 4 monthly phone calls (mean follow-up time: 26.7 months). Negative binomial regression compared falls incidence rate ratios (IRR) between the two groups of men.


there were 37 (11%) Italian-born men and 185 (22%) Australian-born men who had two or more falls during follow-up (P < 0.001). Negative binomial analysis demonstrated that Italian-born men had half the incidence rate of falls compared with Australian-born men (IRR = 0.51, 95% CI = 0.38-0.67). After adjustment for falls risk factors, Italian-born men remained significantly less likely to fall with a 43% lower fall rate (IRR = 0.57, 95% CI = 0.39-0.85).


older male Italian-born immigrants are less likely to fall than their Australian-born counterparts. Differences in fall rates between the two groups are not explained by established falls risk factors.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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