Falls: A Big Concern for Elderly Patients
Falls are a big concern for our elderly population:
Common injuries sustained with elderly falls:
- Among older adults age 65 or older, falls are the leading cause of injury or death. (American Trauma Society)
- 1 out of 3 adults age 65 and older experience a fall each year. (CDC)
- In 2010 2.3 million nonfatal fall injuries in elderly adults were treated in emergency departments with 662,000 hospitalizations reported. (CDC)
- With this related medical cost was estimated at 30 billion dollars.
- Minor to complex lacerations with risk of infections.
- Broken bones (i.e., hip or pelvis fracture, spinal fracture, arms or shoulders) which may require surgery, hospitalization and extended rehab.
- Head Trauma (traumatic brain injury) in 2000 TBI accounted for 46% of fatal falls among older adults. (CDC)
- Regular exercise focused on strength and balance ,
- HealthPlex to start offering Tai Chi (12 week course starting in 2014) – a Chinese martial art practiced for both defense training and health benefits, such as stress management , relaxation, coordination.
- Review all medications including supplements with primary physician for side effects such as dizziness and drowsiness.
- Have a vision exam at least once a year
- Review home and environment safety:
- rugs- nonskid or taped
- grab bars in showers and bathrooms
- handrails for stairs
- proper lighting
- floor space free of clutter and trip hazards