REVIEW PAPER
Falls – the socio-economic and medical aspects important for developing prevention and treatment strategies
 
More details
Hide details
1
Department of Emergency Medical Services, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski University, Kraków, Poland
2
Faculty of Medicine, Jagiellonian University Medical College, Kraków, Poland
3
Department of Health Economics and Medical Law, Medical University, Warsaw, Poland
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Marcin Mikos   

Department of Emergency Medical Services, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, the Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski Kraków University, Gustawa Herlinga-Grudzińskiego 1, 30-705, Kraków, Poland
 
 
KEYWORDS
TOPICS
ABSTRACT
Introduction:
Although falls occur extremely frequently, they are still one of the least investigated causes of death. According to the World Health Organization, around 37.3 million falls occur globally every year resulting in the deaths of over 660,000 adults and almost 30,000 children.

Objective:
The aim of this review is to evaluate the most up-to-date and comprehensive knowledge on falls and their consequences, especially in populations at the highest risk of fatal falls.

Brief description of state of knowledge:
Currently, there is a limited amount of literature which analyzes falls. Falls affect all age groups, but their location, cause, and severity vary among different populations. Individuals who are particularly at risk of falling at home include younger children and the elderly. Research indicates that falls are one of the main causes of work-related injuries and deaths, especially those occurring at significant heights. Falls in the home environment are the second most common cause of death in over 33% of accidents and the main cause of injury in 41.2% of accidents. During patient hospitalizations, falls generate additional burdens and costs on the healthcare system.

Conclusions:
This review elaborated on the nature of falls in different populations and analyzed the influence falls have on the healthcare system, in society, and on the economy. This knowledge is particularly important in an aging society, which will inevitably face increasing problems due to falls in the near future. As the emphasis on falls increases, leaders and lawmakers will be pushed to establish individualized prevention measures, as described in this review, for specific risk groups to effectively prevent falls and their consequences.

 
REFERENCES (62)
1.
World Health Organization. Falls [Internet]. 2018 [cited 2020 Mar 4]. Available from: https://www.who.int/news-room/....
 
2.
World Health Organization. Global Health Estimates 2016: Deaths by Cause, Age, Sex, by Country and by Region, 2000–2016 [Internet]. Geneva; 2018. Available from: https://www.who.int/healthinfo....
 
3.
Quigley P, Bulat T, Kurtzman E, Olney R, Powell-Cope G, Rubenstein L. Fall prevention and injury protection for nursing home residents. J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2010; 11(4): 284–93. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jamd....
 
4.
Padrón-Monedero A, Damián J, Pilar Martin M, Fernández-Cuenca R. Mortality trends for accidental falls in older people in Spain, 2000–2015. BMC Geriatr. 2017; 17(1): 276. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12877....
 
5.
Jagnoor J, Keay L, Ganguli A, Dandona R, Thakur JS, Boufous S, et al. Fall related injuries: A retrospective medical review study in North India. Injury. 2012; 43(12): 1996–2000. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.inju....
 
6.
Brito M de A, Melo AMN, Veras I de C, Oliveira CMS de, Bezerra MAR, Rocha SS da. Risk factors in the domestic environment for falls in children under five years of age. Rev Gauch Enferm. 2017; 38(3): e2017–1. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1590/1983-1....
 
7.
Haarbauer-Krupa J, Haileyesus T, Gilchrist J, Mack KA, Law CS, Joseph A. Fall-related traumatic brain injury in children ages 0–4 years. J Safety Res. 2019; 70: 127–33. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsr.....
 
8.
AlSowailmi BA, AlAkeely MH, AlJutaily HI, Alhasoon MA, Omair A, AlKhalaf HA. Prevalence of fall injuries and risk factors for fall among hospitalized children in a specialized children’s hospital in Saudi Arabia. Ann Saudi Med. 2018; 38(3): 225–9. Available from: https://doi.org/10.5144/0256-4....
 
9.
Chen H, Luo X. Severity Prediction Models of Falling Risk for Workers at Height. Procedia Eng. 2016; 164: 439–45. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.proe....
 
10.
Yi KH. The High-risk Groups According to the Trends and Characteristics of Fatal Occupational Injuries in Korean Workers Aged 50 Years and Above. Saf Health Work [Internet]. 2018; 9(2): 184–91. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.shaw....
 
11.
Council NS. Injury Facts 2017. 17th ed. National Safety Council; 2017 [cited 2020 Mar 2]. Available from: https://injuryfacts.nsc.org/.
 
12.
Socias-Morales CM, Chaumont Menéndez CK, Marsh SM. Fatal work-related falls in the United States, 2003–2014. Am J Ind Med. 2018; 61(3): 204–15. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1002/ajim.2....
 
13.
Perotti S, Russo MC. Work-related fatal injuries in Brescia County (Northern Italy), 1982 to 2015: A forensic analysis. J Forensic Leg Med. 2018 Aug; 58: 122–5. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jflm....
 
14.
Lilley R, Jaye C, Davie G, Keeling S, Waters D, Egan R. Age-related patterns in work-related injury claims from older New Zealanders, 2009–2013: Implications of injury for an aging workforce. Accid Anal Prev. 2018; 110: 86–92. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aap.....
 
15.
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) – Current and Revised Data [Internet]. [cited 2020 Mar 10]. Available from: https://www.bls.gov/iif/oshcfo....
 
16.
Konda S, Tiesman HM, Reichard AA. Fatal traumatic brain injuries in the construction industry, 2003–2010. Am J Ind Med. 2016; 59(3): 212–20. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1002/ajim.2....
 
17.
Główny Urząd Statystyczny. Accidents at work in 2017 [Internet]. 2018. Available from: https://stat.gov.pl/obszary-te....
 
18.
Główny Urząd Statystyczny. Accidents at work on private farms in agriculturea by contact-modes of injury and by voivodships. Accidents at work in 2017. 2018.
 
19.
Gross N, Young T, Ramirez M, Leinenkugel K, Peek-Asa C. Characteristics of Work- and Non-work-Related Farm Injuries. J Rural Health. 2015; 31(4): 401–9. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1111/jrh.12....
 
20.
Rorat M, Thannhauser A, Jurek T. Analysis of injuries and causes of death in fatal farm-related incidents in Lower Silesia, Poland. Ann Agric Environ Med. 2015; 22(2): 271–4. Available from: https://doi.org/10.5604/123219....
 
21.
Gielen AC, McDonald EM, Shields W. Unintentional home injuries across the life span: problems and solutions. Annu Rev Public Health. 2015; 36(1): 231–53. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1146/annure....
 
22.
Gill AC, Kelly NR. Prevention of falls in children – UpToDate [Internet]. UpToDate.inc. 2019 [cited 2020 Feb 29]. Available from: https://www.uptodate.com/conte....
 
23.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A National Action Plan for Child Injury Prevention: Reducing Fall-Related Injuries in Children [Internet]. 2013 [cited 2020 Feb 29]. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/safechild/....
 
24.
Turgut K, Sarihan ME, Colak C, Güven T, Gür A, Gürbüz S. Falls from height: A retrospective analysis. World J Emerg Med. 2018; 9(1): 46. Available from: https://doi.org/10.5847/wjem.j....
 
25.
US Consumer Product Safety Commission. CPSC: Parents, Caregivers Should Consider Safety Before Opening Windows | CPSC.gov [Internet]. 2011 [cited 2020 Feb 29]. Available from: https://www.cpsc.gov/content/c....
 
26.
Powell-Cope G, Thomason S, Bulat T, Pippins KM, Young HM. Preventing Falls and Fall-Related Injuries at Home. AJN, Am J Nurs. 2018; 118(1): 58–61. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1097/01.NAJ....
 
27.
CDC. Injury prevention and control: data & statistics (WISQARS) [Internet]. [cited 2020 Mar 10]. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/injury/wis....
 
28.
Khow KSF, Visvanathan R. Falls in the Aging Population. Clin Geriatr Med. 2017; 33(3): 357–68. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cger....
 
29.
Tomaszewski K, Chmielowska K, Zarychta M, Głuszko P. Risk factors for falls and bone fractures in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Reumatologia/Rheumatology. 2010; 48(2): 98–103. Available from: https://www.termedia.pl/Risk-f....
 
30.
Michalik C, Matusik P, Nowak J, Chmielowska K, Tomaszewski KA, Parnicka A, et al. Heart failure, comorbidities, and polypharmacy among elderly nursing home residents. Polish Arch Intern Med. 2013; 123(4): 170–5. Available from: https://dx.doi.org/10.20452/pa....
 
31.
Tomaszewski K, Matusik P, Chmielowska K, Nowak J, Parnicka A, Dubiel M, et al. Dementia and physical function among elderly residents of chosen care homes. Gerontol Pol. 2010; 18(2): 71–5. Available from: www.gp.viamedica.pl.
 
32.
Matusik P, Tomaszewski K, Chmielowska K, Nowak J, Nowak W, Parnicka A, et al. Severe frailty and cognitive impairment are related to higher mortality in 12-month follow-up of nursing home residents. Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2012; 55(1): 22–4. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.arch....
 
33.
National Center for Health Statistics. Health, United States, 2016: With chartbook on long-term trends in health [Internet]. Department of Health and Human Services. Hyattsville; 2017. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/p....
 
34.
CDC. WISQARS Fatal Injury Reports, National, Regional and State, 1981–2017. [Internet]. [cited 2020 Mar 10]. Available from: https://webappa.cdc.gov/sasweb....
 
35.
Burns E, Kakara R. Deaths from Falls Among Persons Aged ≥65 Years – United States, 2007–2016. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2018; 67(18): 509–14. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmw....
 
36.
Edbom-Kolarz A, Marcinkowski JT. Falls of elderly people – causes, consequences, prevention. Hygeia Public Health. 2011; 46(3): 313–8.
 
37.
Health Research & Educational Trust. Preventing Patient Falls: A Systematic Approach from the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare Project. Heal Res Educ Trust. 2016; 1–20. Available from: https://www.aha.org/ahahret-gu....
 
38.
Morris R, O’Riordan S. Prevention of falls in hospital. Clin Med J R Coll Physicians London. 2017; 17(4): 360–2. Available from: https://doi.org/10.7861/clinme....
 
39.
Dzieża-Grudnik A, Czekaj D, Wójcik-Bugajska M, Grodzicki T. [Falls during hospitalization--prevalence and consequences]. Przegl Lek. 2014; 71(10): 537–40. Available from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pu....
 
40.
Kujawsko-Pomorskiego UMW. Program zapobiegania upadkom dla seniorów w województwie kujawsko-pomorskim [Internet]. 2018 [cited 2020 Feb 29]. Available from: https://www.kujawsko-pomorskie....
 
41.
Broese van Groenou MI, De Boer A. Providing informal care in a changing society. Eur J Ageing. 2016; 13(3): 271–9. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10433....
 
42.
Główny Urząd Statystyczny. Zdrowie i zachowanie zdrowotne mieszkańców Polski w świetle Europejskiego Ankietowego Badania Zdrowia (EHIS) 2014 r. [Internet]. Główny Urząd Statystyczny, Notatka informacyjna. Warszawa; 2015. Available from: https://stat.gov.pl/files/gfx/....
 
43.
Cheung J, Hocking P. Caring as worrying: The experience of spousal carers. J Adv Nurs. 2004; 47(5): 475–82. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365....
 
44.
Hoffman GJ, Hays RD, Wallace SP, Shapiro MF, Yakusheva O, Ettner SL. Receipt of caregiving and fall risk in us community-dwelling older adults. Med Care. 2017; 55(4): 371–8. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1097/MLR.00....
 
45.
Joo H, Wang G, Yee SL, Zhang P, Sleet D. Economic Burden of Informal Caregiving Associated With History of Stroke and Falls Among Older Adults in the U.S. Am J Prev Med. 2017; 53(6): S197–204. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amep....
 
46.
Li F, Zeng J, Huang J, Zhang J, Chen Y, Yan H, et al. Work-related and non-work-related accident fatal falls in Shanghai and Wuhan, China. Saf Sci. 2019; 117: 43–8. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ssci....
 
47.
Center For Disease Control and Prevention. Make STEADI Part of Your Medical Practice | STEADI – Older Adult Fall Prevention | CDC Injury Center. [cited 2020 Mar 4]. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/steadi/ind....
 
48.
Karani M V, Haddad Y, Lee R. The role of pharmacists in preventing falls among America’s older adults. Front Public Heal. 2016; 4: 250. Available from: https://doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.....
 
49.
Johnston Y. A steadi initiative in primary care: evidence of reduction in falls-related hospitalizations. Innov Aging. 2018; 2(Suppl 1): 237.
 
50.
Kruschke C, Butcher HK. Evidence-Based Practice Guideline: Fall Prevention for Older Adults. J Gerontol Nurs. 2017; 43(11): 15–21.
 
51.
Coe LJ, St. John JA, Hariprasad S, Shankar KN, Mac Culloch PA, Bettano AL, et al. An integrated approach to falls prevention: A model for linking clinical and community interventions through the massachusetts prevention and wellness trust fund. Front Public Heal. 2017; 5: 38. Available from: https://doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.....
 
52.
Ong ACW, Low SG, Vasanwala FF. Childhood injuries in Singapore: Can local physicians and the healthcare system do more to confront this public health concern? Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2016; 13(7): 718. Available from: https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph....
 
53.
Keall MD, Pierse N, Howden-Chapman P, Cunningham C, Cunningham M, Guria J, et al. Home modifications to reduce injuries from falls in the Home Injury Prevention Intervention (HIPI) study: A cluster-randomised controlled trial. Lancet. 2015; 385(9964): 231–8. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-....
 
54.
Hanger HC. Low-Impact Flooring: Does It Reduce Fall-Related Injuries? J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2017; 18(7): 588–91. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jamd....
 
55.
Carande-Kulis V, Stevens JA, Florence CS, Beattie BL, Arias I. A cost-benefit analysis of three older adult fall prevention interventions. J Safety Res. 2015; 52: 65–70. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsr.....
 
56.
Thompson C, Holskey T, Wallenrod S, Simunovich S, Corn R. Effectiveness of a Fall Prevention Exercise Program on Falls Risk in Community-Dwelling Older Adults. Transl J Am Coll Sport Med. 2019; 4(3): 16. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1249/TJX.00....
 
57.
Vlaeyen E, Coussement J, Leysens G, Van Der Elst E, Delbaere K, Cambier D, et al. Characteristics and effectiveness of fall prevention programs in nursing homes: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2015; 63(2): 211–21. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1111/jgs.13....
 
58.
Olij B, Erasmus V, Barmentloo L, Burdorf A, Smilde D, Schoon Y, et al. Evaluation of Implementing a Home-Based Fall Prevention Program among Community-Dwelling Older Adults. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019; 16(6): 1079. Available from: https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph....
 
59.
Lord SR, Close JCT. New horizons in falls prevention. Age Ageing. 2018; 47(4): 492–8. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1093/ageing....
 
60.
Arkkukangas M, Cederbom S, Tonkonogi M, Umb Carlsson Õ. Older adults’ experiences with mHealth for fall prevention exercise: usability and promotion of behavior change strategies. Physiother Theory Pract. 2020; 1–7. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1080/095939....
 
61.
Delbaere K, Valenzuela T, Woodbury A, Davies T, Yeong J, Steffens D, et al. Evaluating the effectiveness of a home-based exercise programme delivered through a tablet computer for preventing falls in older community-dwelling people over 2 years: study protocol for the Standing Tall randomised controlled trial. BMJ Open. 2015; 5(10): e009173. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjope....
 
62.
Vieira ER, Palmer RC, Chaves PHM. Prevention of falls in older people living in the community. BMJ. 2016; 353: i1419. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i1....
 
eISSN:1898-2263
ISSN:1232-1966