Evid Based Nurs 7:26 doi:10.1136/ebn.7.1.26
  • Causation

Certain characteristics predicted an early fall for elderly patients in a hospital rehabilitation ward

 Q In elderly patients, do patient characteristics predict the risk of falling within 1 week of admission to a rehabilitation ward?



prospective cohort study with blinded outcome assessment.


3 general rehabilitation wards in a non-acute geriatric hospital.


1025 elderly patients (mean age 82 y, 64% women) who were consecutively admitted to a rehabilitation ward from acute medical, orthopaedic, and surgical wards after treatment for an acute illness.

GraphicAssessment of risk factors:

patient characteristics including age, sex, past history of falls, impaired vision, hearing loss, lower limb abnormalities, confusion (Hodkinson Abbreviated Mental Test score <7 out of 10), gait disturbance (“get up and go” test), admission diagnosis, source of referral, fractures, and the Downton Fall Risk score.


time to first fall after admission to …

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