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J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2018 Jan 16;73(2):233-239. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glx115.

Risk Profiles for Injurious Falls in People Over 60: A Population-Based Cohort Study.

Author information

1
Aging Research Center (ARC), Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Karolinska Institutet and Stockholm University, Sweden.
2
Stockholm Gerontology Research Center, Sweden.
3
Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Tianjin Medical University, China.
4
Functional Area Occupational Therapy & Physiotherapy, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden.

Abstract

Background:

Although falls in older adults are related to multiple risk factors, these factors have commonly been studied individually. We aimed to identify risk profiles for injurious falls in older adults by detecting clusters of established risk factors and quantifying their impact on fall risk.

Methods:

Participants were 2,566 people, aged 60 years and older, from the population-based Swedish National Study on Aging and Care in Kungsholmen. Injurious falls was defined as hospitalization for or receipt of outpatient care because a fall. Cluster analysis was used to identify aggregation of possible risk factors including chronic diseases, fall-risk increasing drugs (FRIDs), physical and cognitive impairments, and lifestyle-related factors. Associations between the clusters and injurious falls over 3, 5, and 10 years were estimated using flexible parametric survival models.

Results:

Five clusters were identified including: a "healthy", a "well-functioning with multimorbidity", a "well-functioning, with multimorbidity and high FRID consumption", a "physically and cognitively impaired", and a "disabled" cluster. The risk of injurious falls for all groups was significantly higher than for the first cluster of healthy individuals in the reference category. Hazard ratios (95% confidence intervals) ranged from 1.71 (1.02-2.66) for the second cluster to 12.67 (7.38-21.75) for the last cluster over 3 years of follow-up. The highest risk was observed in the last two clusters with high burden of physical and cognitive impairments.

Conclusion:

Risk factors for injurious fall tend to aggregate, representing different levels of risk for falls. Our findings can be useful to tailor and prioritize clinical and public health interventions.

KEYWORDS:

Cluster analysis; Community-dwelling; Fall risk factor; Injury; Swedish National study on Aging and Care in Kungsholmen (SNAC-K)

PMID:
28605455
PMCID:
PMC5861922
DOI:
10.1093/gerona/glx115
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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