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Medical illnesses are more important than medications as risk factors of falls in older community dwellers? A cross-sectional study.
Age Ageing. 2006 May; 35(3):246-51.AA

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Previous studies have confirmed the contribution of various medications towards falls in the older population. Recently questions were raised as to whether the chronic illnesses or drug use was more important.

OBJECTIVE

We attempt to test the hypothesis that underlying medical illnesses are the cause of falls rather than medications.

DESIGN

Cross-sectional.

SETTING

Urban community in Hong Kong.

SUBJECTS

4,000 Ambulatory community-dwelling men and women aged 65 years or over.

METHODS

Demographic data, fall history in the previous 12 months, medical diagnoses, current medications and self-rated health were recorded. Body measurements and neuromuscular function tests were performed. Medical diagnoses and their corresponding medications were tested simultaneously in a multivariate model.

RESULTS

789 (19.7%) Subjects reported at least one fall and 235 (5.9%) experienced two or more falls. After adjustment for age and sex, medications associated with any falls were aspirin, diabetic drugs, nitrates, NSAIDs, and paracetamol, and those associated with recurrent falls were calcium channel blockers, diabetic drugs, nitrates, NSAIDs, aspirin and statins. Only anti-diabetics and nitrate showed moderate and borderline significance in multivariate analyses for recurrent and any falls respectively (OR 2.9, P = 0.01; OR 1.5, P = 0.027). Other medications failed to show significant relationship with falls, while eye diseases, heart diseases and musculoskeletal pain showed variable associations.

CONCLUSION

The apparent association between many medications and falls was mediated through the underlying medical diagnoses and neuromuscular impairment. Anti-diabetics agents were associated with falls.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Medicine and Therapeutics, School of Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, 9/F Clinical Science Building, Prince of Wales Hospital, Shatin, New Territories, Hong Kong SAR. jleesw_2000@yahoo.comNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

16497683

Citation

Lee, Jenny S W., et al. "Medical Illnesses Are More Important Than Medications as Risk Factors of Falls in Older Community Dwellers? a Cross-sectional Study." Age and Ageing, vol. 35, no. 3, 2006, pp. 246-51.
Lee JS, Kwok T, Leung PC, et al. Medical illnesses are more important than medications as risk factors of falls in older community dwellers? A cross-sectional study. Age Ageing. 2006;35(3):246-51.
Lee, J. S., Kwok, T., Leung, P. C., & Woo, J. (2006). Medical illnesses are more important than medications as risk factors of falls in older community dwellers? A cross-sectional study. Age and Ageing, 35(3), 246-51.
Lee JS, et al. Medical Illnesses Are More Important Than Medications as Risk Factors of Falls in Older Community Dwellers? a Cross-sectional Study. Age Ageing. 2006;35(3):246-51. PubMed PMID: 16497683.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Medical illnesses are more important than medications as risk factors of falls in older community dwellers? A cross-sectional study. AU - Lee,Jenny S W, AU - Kwok,Timothy, AU - Leung,P C, AU - Woo,Jean, Y1 - 2006/02/23/ PY - 2006/2/25/pubmed PY - 2006/11/11/medline PY - 2006/2/25/entrez SP - 246 EP - 51 JF - Age and ageing JO - Age Ageing VL - 35 IS - 3 N2 - BACKGROUND: Previous studies have confirmed the contribution of various medications towards falls in the older population. Recently questions were raised as to whether the chronic illnesses or drug use was more important. OBJECTIVE: We attempt to test the hypothesis that underlying medical illnesses are the cause of falls rather than medications. DESIGN: Cross-sectional. SETTING: Urban community in Hong Kong. SUBJECTS: 4,000 Ambulatory community-dwelling men and women aged 65 years or over. METHODS: Demographic data, fall history in the previous 12 months, medical diagnoses, current medications and self-rated health were recorded. Body measurements and neuromuscular function tests were performed. Medical diagnoses and their corresponding medications were tested simultaneously in a multivariate model. RESULTS: 789 (19.7%) Subjects reported at least one fall and 235 (5.9%) experienced two or more falls. After adjustment for age and sex, medications associated with any falls were aspirin, diabetic drugs, nitrates, NSAIDs, and paracetamol, and those associated with recurrent falls were calcium channel blockers, diabetic drugs, nitrates, NSAIDs, aspirin and statins. Only anti-diabetics and nitrate showed moderate and borderline significance in multivariate analyses for recurrent and any falls respectively (OR 2.9, P = 0.01; OR 1.5, P = 0.027). Other medications failed to show significant relationship with falls, while eye diseases, heart diseases and musculoskeletal pain showed variable associations. CONCLUSION: The apparent association between many medications and falls was mediated through the underlying medical diagnoses and neuromuscular impairment. Anti-diabetics agents were associated with falls. SN - 0002-0729 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/16497683/Medical_illnesses_are_more_important_than_medications_as_risk_factors_of_falls_in_older_community_dwellers_A_cross_sectional_study_ L2 - https://academic.oup.com/ageing/article-lookup/doi/10.1093/ageing/afj056 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -