Knee Muscle Strength and Visual Acuity are the Most Important Modifiable Predictors of Falls in Patients after Hip Fracture Surgery
I came across this paper: Knee Muscle Strength and Visual Acuity are the Most Important Modifiable Predictors of Falls in Patients after Hip Fracture Surgery, a 2013 publication while I was searching for something else.
It’s great that this is bringing the obvious, that good strength and balance are important in the avoidance of falls to the attention of the research and wider communities. You would think, therefore, that post hip-replacement physiotherapy would be appropriately designed and deployed to these patients who were already likely significantly deconditioned…especially because hip fracture patients are at increased risk of suffering a second fracture due to a fall.
Lack of Physiotherapy
Appropriately designed, maybe, but deployed…afraid not. A recent survey by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists reported that 50% of patients regained their former levels of mobility and independence due to lack of physiotherapy after discharge, with many of these people being unable to return to live at home (Excerpt)
This likely reflects issues of inadequate funding rather than expertise. Physios in the NHS are doing a fantastic job, but it’s with one arm tied behind their back and the threat of it happening to the other. Given that the funding landscape of the NHS is not likely to dramatically improve, these data for me bolster the argument to think creatively on how to fill this rehabilitation gap; the patients need it!
Are you a fitness professional who leads exercise with older populations, or people who have suffered injury? Check out some of our other news items on osteoarthritis, injury awareness, and our courses on injury management.