|Budget Amount *help
¥2,200,000 (Direct Cost : ¥2,200,000)
Fiscal Year 1999 : ¥900,000 (Direct Cost : ¥900,000)
Fiscal Year 1998 : ¥1,300,000 (Direct Cost : ¥1,300,000)
The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of falling on the subsequent fear of falling, physical and emotional health, and daily life of elderly people.
The subjects were 871 residents of 0 Town in Hokkaido who were aged 65 years or older. Two surveys were carried out: a baseline survey (in 1998) in which 754 of the 871 subjects participated and a follow-up survey (in 1999) of 599 subjects who replied in the baseline survey that they had never experienced a fall. In the follow-up survey, 518 of the 599 selected subjects participated. The surveys were conducted in the homes of the subjects by a trained interviewers. The items surveyed included gender, age, history of falls in the past year and the circumstances of the falls, fear of falling, self efficacy, history of disease, self-rated health status, satisfaction with life, instrumental ADL, social roles, social network, and lifestyle.
In the baseline survey, it was found that more women had experienced falls in the past year
than men had (19.3% of the men vs 21.6% of the women). People who used a walking aid as well as people with a history of hypertension, cataract or osteoporosis experienced more falls.
Of the 518 subjects who participated in the follow-up survey, 68 replied that they had experienced falls and 452 replied that they had not experienced falls since the time of the baseline survey. These two groups were compared to assess the effects of falls on quality of life. The fear of falling had increased in the "fall" group compared to that in the "nonfall" group. The self-rated health status and degree of satisfaction with life had decreased in the fall group and, conversely, had increased in the nonfall group. The number of people with whom subjects associated, the social role score, and the social participation score had notably decreased in the nonfall group compared to those in the fall group.
The results suggest that experience of falling by elderly people not only increases the degree of anxiety about falling again but also causes a deterioration of subjective well-being as well as limitations to social roles and association with other people. However, the results did not support the hypothesis that falling has a stronger effect on the quality of life of old-old people. Less