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Postgrad Med. 1996 Mar;99(3):269-71, 275-6.

Mobility and balance in the elderly: a guide to bedside assessment.

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Division of Geriatric Medicine, Dalhousie University Faculty of Medicine, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.


Elderly patients often have impaired balance and loss of mobility. Regular assessment of mobility status is essential to ensure that appropriate support is provided and to monitor recovery. Functions that should be assessed include mobility in bed, ability to rise to a sitting position, ability to transfer from bed to chair and in and out of a bathtub, balance, ambulation, and gait. Evaluation can be performed quickly at the patient's bedside. For some patients, stretching and strengthening exercises may help restore function.

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