Risk factors and characteristics of falls
during inpatient rehabilitation
of elderly patients
, Inna Shugaev
, Ruben Lenger
Fliman Geriatric Rehabilitation Hospital, Zalman Shneur St.,
P.O. Box 2263, Haifa 31021, Israel
Bruce Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Technion-Institute of Technology,
P.O. Box 9649, Bat-Galim, Haifa 31096, Israel
Received 23 May 2005; received in revised form 28 January 2006; accepted 30 January 2006
Available online 29 March 2006
The present study investigated the incidence, characteristics, and risk factors predictive of falls in
different patient populations hospitalized in a geriatric rehabilitation hospital. Overall 84 fallers and
84 control patients were enrolled in this study. The patients were analyzed into three subgroups:
patients hospitalized for stroke rehabilitation, hip surgery rehabilitation, and other rehabilitation
patients. All patients were evaluated for their predisposing and situational risk factors for the fall.
Each group of fallers was analyzed in relation to the control group. Every group was also analyzed in
relation to the other groups. Risk-taking activity and using wheelchairs were common risk factor
among patients hospitalized for stroke rehabilitation or hip surgery rehabilitation. Vertigo and anti-
hypertensive drugs intake were signiﬁcant predictors of falling among all fallers in the hospital.
Among Stroke patients’ vertigo was a signiﬁcant predictor of falling. Anti-depressant drug intake was
the only weakly signiﬁcant predictor of falling among deconditioned patients. Patient’s falls in a
geriatric rehabilitation setting tend to demonstrate patterns that may be used to focus prevention
strategies. We found that risk factors for falls differ between different groups of rehabilitation
patients, and that the selection of type of patients may affect which combination of risk factors is
# 2006 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Keywords: Falls; Rehabilitation of falling elderly; Risk factors of falling
Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics 44 (2007) 1–12
* Corresponding author. Tel.: +972 4 8307051; fax: +972 4 822 6017.
E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org (E. Aizen).
0167-4943/$ – see front matter # 2006 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.