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Journal Article

Citation

Edwards N, Dulai J, Rahman A. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019; 16(9): e16091598.

Affiliation

Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics, and Occupational Health, McGill University, Montreal, QC H3A 0G4, Canada. alvi.rahman@mail.mcgill.ca.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2019, MDPI: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute)

DOI

10.3390/ijerph16091598

PMID

31067692

Abstract

Stair and bathroom falls contribute to injuries among older adults. This review examined which features of stairs and bathrooms have been assessed in epidemiological, ergonomic, and national aging studies on falls or their risk factors. Epidemiological and ergonomic studies were eligible if published from 2006-2017, written in English, included older persons, and reported built environment measures. The data extracted included the following: study population and design, outcome measures, and stair and bathroom features. National aging studies were eligible if English questionnaires were available, and if data were collected within the last 10 years. Sample characteristics; data collection methods; and data about falls, the environment, and assistive device use were extracted. There were 114 eligible articles assessed-38 epidemiologic and 76 ergonomic. Among epidemiological studies, 2 assessed stair falls only, 4 assessed bathroom falls only, and 32 assessed falls in both locations. Among ergonomic studies, 67 simulated stairs and 9 simulated bathrooms. Specific environmental features were described in 14 (36.8%) epidemiological studies and 73 (96%) ergonomic studies. Thirteen national aging studies were identified-four had stair data and six had bathroom data. Most epidemiologic and national aging studies did not include specific measures of stairs or bathrooms; the built environment descriptions in ergonomic studies were more detailed. More consistent and detailed environmental measures in epidemiologic and national aging studies would better inform fall prevention approaches targeting the built environment.


Language: en

Keywords

building codes; environmental hazards; epidemiological studies; ergonomic studies; falls; longitudinal studies on aging

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