The effects of programmed therapeutic exercises on fall risk factors in elderly
Keywords:elderly, falls risk factors, fear of fall, physiotherapy
Introduction: Identification of the risk factors that can be modified is an essential aspect in the development of the effective strategy for therapeutic intervention with the purpose to improve mobility and injury prevention and post-fall consequences. This research aimed to analyze the impact of programmed therapeutic exercises on the fall risk factors in the elderly.
Methods: We included 260 patients older than 65 years, and assigned them randomly into three groups. Group A: 65 patients subjected to therapeutic exercises for moderate-intensity muscle strengthening with Theraband stretch straps (corresponding to 11-14 on the Borg rating of perceived exertion scale). Group B: 65 patients subjected to therapeutic anti-gravity exercises. Control group: 130 patients not participating in programmed therapeutic exercises.
Presence of fall risk factors was assessed in all three groups with standardized Fast Evaluation of Mobility, Balance, and Fear test (FEMBAF) before the initiation of therapy, after three and after six months of treatment.
Results: At the end of the study, the subjects of the group A had significantly fewer limitations in performing basic life activities at home compared to the patients of the control and Group B, p = 0.037. The control group subjects were statistically significantly more likely to complain of vertigo than subjects of the experimental groups, p = 0.021. The subjects of the experimental groups had more than two falls than the control group subjects, p = 0.003 statistically. In the control group, the number of fractures after the fall at the end of the study increased significantly, statistically higher than in the subjects of the experimental groups, P = 0.037.
Conclusion: Programmed therapeutic exercise significantly reduces the risk of falling factors, and significant effects have been achieved among subjects who have exercised with elastic strips.