Problems and fall risk determinants of quality of life in older adults with increased risk of falling

Authors

  • Sang-I Lin,

    1. Department of Physical Therapy, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan City, Taiwan
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Ku-Chou Chang,

    1. Division of Cerebrovascular Diseases, Department of Neurology, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
    2. College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan, Taiwan
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Hsuei-Chen Lee,

    1. Department of Physical Therapy and Assistive Technology, Exercise and Health Science Research Center, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Yi-Ching Yang,

    1. Department of Family Medicine, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan City, Taiwan
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Jau-Yih Tsauo

    Corresponding author
    1. School and Graduate Institute of Physical Therapy, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan
    2. Physical Therapy Center, National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei City, Taiwan
    • Correspondence: Professor Jau-Yih Tsauo PhD LPT, School and Graduate Institute of Physical Therapy, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, No.1 Jen Ai Road Section 1, Taipei 100, Taiwan. Email: jytsauo@ntu.edu.tw

    Search for more papers by this author

Abstract

Aims

Determine quality of life and its association with fall risk factors in older adults with increased risk of falling.

Methods

A total of 597 community-dwelling Taiwanese older adults who were screened to have increased risk of falling participated in the present study. The fall risk factors included sociodemographics, physical and psychological function, Timed Up and Go, past fall/medical histories, fear of falling and medications. The Euro Qol EQ-5D was used to measure health-related quality of life.

Results

Pain/discomfort was the EQ-5D dimension most frequently reported to be impaired (35%), regardless of the level of fall risk or age groups, followed by mobility (25%). Hierarchical regression analysis showed that Geriatric Depression Scale, Mini-Mental State Examination, physiological function, up-and-go, fear of falling and psychotropic medication were independent predictors for total EQ-5D, explaining 68.37% of the variance. Logistic regression analysis showed that for the five EQ-5D dimensions, Geriatric Depression Scale and Up and Go time were the most common determinants.

Conclusions

Pain/discomfort was the leading impairment, and greater Geriatric Depression Scale and longer up-and-go time were the main contributing factors in declines in quality of life in older adults with increased risk of falling. These factors are often modifiable, and their management might be considered a priority in falls prevention. Geriatr Gerontol Int 2015; 15: 579–587.

Ancillary