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ISRN Rehabilitation
Volume 2013, Article ID 935924, 8 pages
Research Article

Risk Factors for Falls and Fragility Fractures in Community-Dwelling Seniors: A One-Year Prospective Study

1Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada N6A 5C1
2University of Windsor, Medical Education Building Room 1100, 401 Sunset Avenue, Windsor, ON, Canada N9B 3P4
3Division of Orthopedic Surgery, University of Western Ontario, Hand and Upper Limb Center, St. Joseph’s Health Care, 268 Grosvenor Street, London, ON, Canada N6A 4L6
4School of Rehabilitation Sciences, McMaster University, 1400 Main Street West, Hamilton, ON, Canada L8S 1C7

Received 21 June 2013; Accepted 18 July 2013

Academic Editors: P. Czarnecki, E. E. Hansson, and H. Unalan

Copyright © 2013 Sacha Song et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. To evaluate risk factors for falls and fragility fractures in healthy seniors. Methods. Assessing 50 ambulatory community-dwelling volunteers ≥65 for demographics, BMI, bone mineral density (BMD) (DEXA), fracture risk (FRAX), balance (Biodex), fear of falling (Modified Falls Efficacy Scale (MFES)), and activity level (RAPA). One-year followup was done through phone interviews. Results. Most participants (17 males, 33 females; mean age years) had normal BMD and were active with little to no fear of falling. Balance did not correlate with FRAX or fear of falling. Activity level did not correlate with FRAX, but the active group had less fear of falling. Most scored below age specific norms on balance testing. Fear of falling was not significantly different between genders but did correlate with FRAX, indicating that patients with higher fracture risk were also more afraid of falling. Individuals who fell after one year had increased fear of falling and decreased activity levels. Conclusions. Community-dwelling seniors with higher risk of future fractures were more afraid of falling. Although healthy and active, this cohort had poor balance compared to age matched norms. Further research on how to best assess fall risk and improve balance to prevent fractures is needed.