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JFSF Vol 6, No 3, September 2021, p.92-97

doi: 10.22540/JFSF-06-092


Original Article

Prevalence and factors associated with recurrent falls among middle-aged community-dwelling women

Nirmala Rathnayake1, Sarath Lekamwasam2

  1. Department of Nursing, Faculty of Allied Health Sciences, University of Ruhuna, Sri Lanka
  2. Population Health Research Centre, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ruhuna, Sri Lanka

Keywords: Middle-aged women, Obesity, Recurrent falls, Sarcopenia, Sri Lanka


Objective: This community-based study evaluated the prevalence and associated risk factors of recurrent falls among middle-aged community-dwelling women in Southern-Sri Lanka. Methods: Randomly selected 285 middle-aged women (40-60years, Mean±SD;51.7±6.1years) participated. History of falls within the previous 12-months was inquired and those who reported two or more falls within 6-month period were considered as recurrent fallers. Age, menopausal status, weight (kg), height (m), waist-circumference (WC, cm), appendicular-skeletal-muscle-mass (ASMM, kg by DXA), hand-grip-strength (HGS, kg) and gait-speed (GS, m/s) were evaluated. Body-mass-index (BMI, kg/m2) and relative-ASMM-index (RSMI, kg/m2) were calculated. Results: The prevalence of recurrent falls was 13% (95%CI; 9.4%-17.5%) (n=37). Recurrent falls were higher among postmenopausal women compared to premenopausal women, older middle-aged women (51-60years) compared to young middle-aged women (40-50years), those with low RSMI compared to normal RSMI, low HGS compared to normal HGS and low GS compared to normal GS (p<0.01). BMI and WC did not show significant associations with recurrent falls. Risk factors associated with recurrent falls were age (OR;7.41, 95%CI; 1.23-44.43, p=0.02), RSMI (OR;3.21, 95%CI; 1.00-10.32, p=0.04) and HGS (OR;3.19, 95%CI; 1.26-8.09, p=0.01). Conclusions: The prevalence of falls among middle-aged women was considerably high. Falls were associated with advanced age, low muscle mass and muscle strength.