Changes in the incidence of falls in an intermediate and long-term care center

Cristina Roqueta, Olga Vázquez, Elisabet de Jaime, Carmen Sánchez, Magda Pastor, Carles Conill, Magda Catalán, Mercè Miró, Anton María Cervera, Ramón Miralles

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Abstract

Introduction: The characteristics of falls in older patients admitted to an institution in 2 different periods. Material and methods: We performed a prospective study of falls among inpatients admitted to an intermediate and long-term care center. Age, sex, Barthel index, main diagnoses, medication at the time of the fall, place, the shift when the fall occurred, lighting, characteristics of the floor, the use of walking aids and/or restraints, the kind of shoes worn, and activity at the moment of the fall were registered. During the first 2-year study period (period A), there were 332 beds (intermediate care and rehabilitation unit, long-term care unit, palliative care unit, psychogeriatric unit and assisted residential home). During the second 2-year period (period B), the palliative and intermediate care units were moved to another center (255 beds remaining). Results: Period A: there were 647 falls in 227 patients; the total number of patients admitted was 1387 (accumulated incidence of falls: 46.6%). Period B: there were 539 falls in 191 patients; the total number of patients admitted was 908 (accumulated incidence of falls: 59.3%). Significant differences between the two periods were found in age (79.8±10.6 versus 81.3 10.2) (p<0.02), the percentage of women (55.2% versus 66.4%) (p<0.001), neurological diagnoses (26.7% versus 36.1%) (p< 0.001), antidepressants (12.6% versus 16.4%), neuroleptics (10.3% versus 15.2%) (p<0.001), falls in the bedroom (39.7% versus 41.6%) (p<0.001), falls when moving from bed to chair (41.3% versus 30.8%) (p<0.001), and the use of walking aids (65.8% versus 40.5%) (p<0.001). Conclusions: a) the incidence of falls increased in the second period of the study; b) in period A, risk factors for falls related to rehabilitation (moving from bed to chair, use of walking aids) were more frequent. In period B, risk factors related to the characteristics of psychogeriatric patients were predominant (neurological illness, use of psychotropic drugs, and c) the difference in the incidence of falls between the two study periods may be related to the distinct characteristics of the patients (case mix). © 2009 SEGG.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)331-334
JournalRevista Espanola de Geriatria y Gerontologia
Volume44
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2009

Keywords

  • Elderly Care units
  • Falls
  • Intermediate care
  • Long-term care
  • Nursing home
  • Risk factors

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    Roqueta, C., Vázquez, O., de Jaime, E., Sánchez, C., Pastor, M., Conill, C., Catalán, M., Miró, M., Cervera, A. M., & Miralles, R. (2009). Changes in the incidence of falls in an intermediate and long-term care center. Revista Espanola de Geriatria y Gerontologia, 44(6), 331-334. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.regg.2009.07.005