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Bull Acad Natl Med. 2014 Jun;198(6):1055-66.

[Can falls be prevented?].

[Article in French]

Abstract

Most recommendations and measures intended to prevent falls focus on the elderly (see HAS guideline of April 2009) but, in our opinion, this isfar too late: prevention must begin much earlier, not only by identifying persons at risk, but also by providing personalized lifestyle advice adapted to each individual's biomechanical, somatic, neurological and biological characteristics. The first preventive measure is to identify a possible deterioration of balance, starting with a physical examination at the age of 45 and repeated regularly throughout life. Extrinsic preventive measures focusing on the domestic and external environments are clearly necessary. But what is most important is to detect and, if necessary, correct any degradation of intrinsic (intracorporeal or somatic) factors starting at the age of 45 years; these include vision, vestibular function and balance, proprioception, and psychological and neurological status. Chronic illnesses and their treatments must also be taken into account: treatment must be limited to indispensable drugs; sedative psychotropics must be avoided if possible; and polymedication must be tightly controlled, as it is a major risk factor for falls. Prevention also requires a diet sufficiently rich in protein, calcium and vitamin D3 (to prevent osteoporosis), and regular daily exercise adapted to the individual, if possible associated with a simultaneous cognitive task. The last key point is the absolute need for thorough functional rehabilitation after any accidental or medical trauma, regardless of age, with the aim of restoring functional status to that existing prior to the accident.

PMID:
26983186
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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