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Falls Merit Complex Care in Elderly

Once considered an inevitable part of aging, falls are now recognized as complex often preventable events in the elderly. Additionally, falls have multiple causes and consequences which call for a wide range of both psychological and physiological interventions that many patients never receive. Even falls that cause only minor injury “need to be taken as seriously as diabetes” says a professor of geriatrics and adult development. He states that falls can be a warning sign that something serious is wrong. Another expert states that falls are comparative to strokes in their harmfulness and added that people do not always report them or seek help for fear that their families will put them in nursing homes. Each year, 1.8 million Americans over the age of 65 are injured in falls. Some can rebound but for others the fall sets off on a downward spiral of physical and emotional problems which include pneumonia, depression, social isolation, infection and muscle loss. In 2005, 4333.000 people over 65 were admitted to hospitals after falling, and 15,800 died as a direct result of the fall. These statistics are alarming, and nursing homes should be well equipped to evaluate any patient who has experienced a fall. To read the full story, click here.