open access

Vol 47, No 5 (2013)
ARTYKUŁ ORYGINALNY
Submitted: 2012-08-02
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Causes and consequences of falls in Parkinson disease patients in a prospective study

Monika Rudzińska, Sylwia Bukowczan, Joanna Stożek, Katarzyna Zajdel, Elżbieta Mirek, Wiesław Chwata, Magdalena Wójcik-Pędziwiatr, Krzysztof Banaszkiewicz, Andrzej Szczudlik
DOI: 10.5114/ninp.2013.38222
·
Neurol Neurochir Pol 2013;47(5):423-430.

open access

Vol 47, No 5 (2013)
ARTYKUŁ ORYGINALNY
Submitted: 2012-08-02

Abstract

Background and purpose

Falls are common events in Parkinson disease (PD) but only a few prospective studies have focused on causes and consequences of falls in PD patients. The aim of the study was prospective analysis of direct causes and consequences of falls in PD patients in comparison to the control group.

Material and methods

One hundred PD patients and 55 age-matched controls were enrolled in the study. The diagnostic workup in all patients included neurological examination, Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale, magnetic resonance imaging, electroencephalography, ultrasonography, otolaryngological, ophthalmological and autonomic function examination. During 12 months of follow-up, falls were registered in both groups, direct causes were classified according to the St. Louis and Olanow classification, and consequences were established.

Results

Falls occurred in 54% of PD patients and in 18% of control subjects. Analysis of direct causes of falls revealed that sudden falls were the most common (31%), followed by episodes of freezing and festination (19.6%), neurological and sensory disturbances (mostly vertigo) (12%), environmental factors (12%), postural instability (11%), orthostatic hypotension (4%), and severe dyskinesia (3.6%); 6.19% of falls were unclassified; 22% of patients had the same etiology of subsequent falls. In PD patients, intrinsic factors were dominant, whereas in the control group intrinsic and extrinsic factors occurred with the same frequency. Every third fall intensified fear of walking. 34% of falls caused injuries; among them bruises of body parts other than the head were most frequent.

Conclusions

Intrinsic factors are the most common causes of falls in PD. Every third fall intensifies fear of walking and causes injuries.

Abstract

Background and purpose

Falls are common events in Parkinson disease (PD) but only a few prospective studies have focused on causes and consequences of falls in PD patients. The aim of the study was prospective analysis of direct causes and consequences of falls in PD patients in comparison to the control group.

Material and methods

One hundred PD patients and 55 age-matched controls were enrolled in the study. The diagnostic workup in all patients included neurological examination, Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale, magnetic resonance imaging, electroencephalography, ultrasonography, otolaryngological, ophthalmological and autonomic function examination. During 12 months of follow-up, falls were registered in both groups, direct causes were classified according to the St. Louis and Olanow classification, and consequences were established.

Results

Falls occurred in 54% of PD patients and in 18% of control subjects. Analysis of direct causes of falls revealed that sudden falls were the most common (31%), followed by episodes of freezing and festination (19.6%), neurological and sensory disturbances (mostly vertigo) (12%), environmental factors (12%), postural instability (11%), orthostatic hypotension (4%), and severe dyskinesia (3.6%); 6.19% of falls were unclassified; 22% of patients had the same etiology of subsequent falls. In PD patients, intrinsic factors were dominant, whereas in the control group intrinsic and extrinsic factors occurred with the same frequency. Every third fall intensified fear of walking. 34% of falls caused injuries; among them bruises of body parts other than the head were most frequent.

Conclusions

Intrinsic factors are the most common causes of falls in PD. Every third fall intensifies fear of walking and causes injuries.

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Keywords

Parkinson disease, falls, risk factors

About this article
Title

Causes and consequences of falls in Parkinson disease patients in a prospective study

Journal

Neurologia i Neurochirurgia Polska

Issue

Vol 47, No 5 (2013)

Pages

423-430

DOI

10.5114/ninp.2013.38222

Bibliographic record

Neurol Neurochir Pol 2013;47(5):423-430.

Keywords

Parkinson disease
falls
risk factors

Authors

Monika Rudzińska
Sylwia Bukowczan
Joanna Stożek
Katarzyna Zajdel
Elżbieta Mirek
Wiesław Chwata
Magdalena Wójcik-Pędziwiatr
Krzysztof Banaszkiewicz
Andrzej Szczudlik

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