Author(s): Sadigh S, Reimers A, Andersson R, Laflamme L
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Abstract Injurious falls among the elderly are an increasing public-health problem in Sweden. One group particularly vulnerable to falls consists of elderly people living in residential-care facilities. The purpose of this study was to investigate the extent to which falls lead to injury within a defined population of elderly people in institutionalized care. All the elderly persons living in residential-care facilities in an urban Swedish municipality during the year 1997 (n = 469 institutional places). Falls and fall-related injuries were registered over a one-year period. Data were gathered by personnel at the time of the falls, using a form specifically designed for surveillance purposes. Of the 865 falls reported during the study period, 375 were among men, with an average age of 82 years, and 490 among women, with an average age of 85 years. Men were subject to falling to a greater extent than women. The most common location was the individual's own bedroom. Injuries were incurred in approximately one in four falls, and the head was the body part most frequently injured. Only 24 falls (2.8\%) resulted in a fracture, of which 18 were hip fractures. Although elderly people living in residential-care facilities fall fairly often, serious injuries, in the form of fractures, are incurred to a relatively limited extent.
This article was published in J Community Health
and referenced in Journal of Molecular Imaging & Dynamics