Managing Fall Prevention through Exercise in Older Adults Afflicted by Cognitive and Strength Impairment

Author: Helen Senderovich1, Nadiya Bayeva2, Basile Montagnese3, Akash Yendamuri4
Affiliation: <sup>1</sup> Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. <sup>2</sup> Department of Medicine, RCSI, Dublin, Dublin, Ireland. <sup>3</sup> Department of Medicine, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA. <sup>4</sup> Department of Medicine, Baycrest Health Sciences, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Conference/Journal: Dement Geriatr Cogn Disord
Date published: 2021 Dec 30
Other: Special Notes: doi: 10.1159/000521140. , Word Count: 250

A growing trend in medicine is older adults and increased need for geriatric services. Falls contribute heavily to hospitalizations and worsening of overall health in this frail demographic. There are numerous biological and physical culprits which, if targeted, can prevent falls. The objective was to review benefits of different types of exercises for fall prevention for older persons who are community-dwelling or living in long-term care facilities.

A systematic review was conducted to determine the different types of exercises for fall prevention. Data extraction via a standardized protocol was performed to assess study design, outcomes, limitations, and author's conclusions. Corroborative themes were identified and the authors responsible for the contributing research were cited as they came up. Nineteen randomized controlled trials were identified, between 1990 and 2018, using MEDLINE, PubMed, Cochrane, CINAHL, and Web of Science databases. Studies involving adults greater than age 60 in high-risk community or nursing home populations in the English language with a duration longer than or equal to 6 weeks with focuses on either low-risk balance, strength, or combination of both and whole-body vibration.

Balance exercise training increased balance at 6 and 12-month intervals involving balance, strength, and cognitive training.

Insignificant results were seen in whole-body vibration and differing results existed for Tai Chi. It is important to recognize that although exercises help reduce the risk of falling and play a significant role in improving mobility safely, there will always be a risk of falls.

Keywords: Exercise; Geriatrics; Physical activity; Prevention; Rehabilitation; Risk assessment.

PMID: 34969039 DOI: 10.1159/000521140