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Physical functioning and fall-related efficacy among community-dwelling elderly people

Journal article
Authors Hadeel Halaweh
Carin Willén
Anna Grimby-Ekman
Ulla Svantesson
Published in European Journal of Physiotherapy
Volume 18
Issue 1
Pages 11-17
ISSN 2167-9169
Publication year 2016
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Health and Rehabilitation
Institute of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Community Medicine, Health Metrics
Pages 11-17
Language en
Keywords Falling, Functional performance, Hand grip strength, Short Physical Performance Battery
Subject categories Neurosciences, Occupational Therapy, Gerontology, specializing in Medical and Health Sciences


Objective: The aim of this study was to assess the association between physical functioning and fall-related efficacy among community-dwelling elderly people.Method: Participants (n = 176) were 60 years old and older. Data were collected using physical functioning tests: hand grip strength, Timed Up and Go (TUG), Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB), Falls Efficacy Scale-International (FES-I) and History of Falling Checklist (HoFC). Statistical analyses were used to determine group differences with respect to age, gender and fall history, as well as the correlation between the total scores of the FES-I and hand grip strength, TUG and SPPB.Results. Values of physical functioning measures were significantly higher in non-fallers than in fallers (p < 0.05). The FES-I total scores were positively correlated with TUG (rs = 0.615) and negatively correlated with hand grip strength (rs =-0.522) and SPPB scores (rs =-0.727). There were significant differences in the FES-I scores according to TUG and SPPB cut-off values (p < 0.001).Conclusion: Higher physical functioning values were associated with a lower incidence of falling and a lower level of fear of falling. Maintaining and improving physical functioning should be considered as an important factor that may influence fall-related efficacy and risk of falling among elderly people. © 2016 Taylor & Francis.

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