Inability to Perform the Repeated Chair Stand Task Predicts Fall-Related Injury in Older Primary Care Patients

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Abstract

Objective

The aim of the study was to examine whether the chair stand component of the Short Physical Performance Battery predicts fall-related injury among older adult primary care patients.

Design

A 2-yr longitudinal cohort study of 430 Boston-area primary care patients aged ≥65 yrs screened to be at risk for mobility decline was conducted. The three components of the Short Physical Performance Battery (balance time, gait speed, and chair stand time) were measured at baseline. Participants reported incidence of fall-related injuries quarterly for 2 yrs. Complementary log-log discrete time hazard models were constructed to examine the hazard of fall-related injury across Short Physical Performance Battery scores, adjusting for age, sex, race, Digit Symbol Substitution Test score, and fall history.

Results

Participants were 68% female and 83% white, with a mean (SD) age of 76.6 (7.0). A total of 137 (32%) reported a fall-related injury during the follow-up period. Overall, inability to perform the chair stand task was a significant predictor of fall-related injury (hazard ratio = 2.11, 95% confidence interval = 1.23–3.62, P = 0.01). Total Short Physical Performance Battery score, gait component score, and balance component score were not predictive of fall-related injury.

Conclusions

Inability to perform the repeated chair stand task was associated with increased hazard of an injurious fall for 2 yrs among a cohort of older adult primary care patients.

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