BALANCE ABILITY TESTING AND FALL RISKS IN ELDERLY

Petr Petr, Brigita Janečková, Ester Poncarová, Hana Kalová, Marie Voštová, Zdena Třísková

Abstract


Abstract: The authors present a brief interim report concerning the field examination of the capability of keeping the equilibrium and occurrence of the risk of falls in a sample of the senior population (28 persons) in conditions of the senior home Borovany near České Budějovice with caregiving service. A reference group included staff members of the City Council České Budějovice and of the caregiving service of the company Ledax - centre Trhové Sviny and working in Borovany. The interim results demonstrate a dramatic situation of the risk of falls in the examined population, where the risk of falls is increased by a factor higher than five, compared to the normal situation. Whereas in the general population, it is to expect normal results of the test of the equilibrium and gait according to Tinetti, i.e. 27–28 points of 28, which is also the result shown in our reference group (27.7 points on average), the population examined - housed in the old people´s home – has a score of 15 points. After exclusion of 8 probands with results within the normal etalon, i.e. 27–28 points, there were 20 probands, whose results were beyond the normal standard having average score in the equilibrium and gait test according to Tinetti 9.6 points of 28. The authors systematically continue performing the field examination. They attempt to establish an international cooperation in this examination. In the work, they present a complete diagnostic tool according to Tinetti in the original English as well as topically used Czech version. Possible misunderstanding or unclearness caused by wide distribution of the diagnostic tool by Tinetti and its many variants in different national languages is also briefly noted. The presented interim results already point out a higher risk of fall in seniors and offer a starting point for reasonable consideration of actual needs of nursing and caregiving in these persons. The authors expect that the results will be taken into account in appropriate considerations and in the decision process concerning the personnel in relevant facilities including the compilation of personal normative.


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