Classification of elderly as fallers and non-fallers using Centre of Pressure velocity

Annu Int Conf IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2010;2010:3678-81. doi: 10.1109/IEMBS.2010.5627649.


Falls are a leading cause of death in the elderly. One of the most common methods of predicting falls is to evaluate balance using force plate measurement of the Centre of Pressure (COP) displacement. This signal, known as a stabilogram, can be decomposed into movement in anteroposterior (AP) and mediolateral (ML) directions. It has been suggested that studying the velocity of COP displacement could lead to new insights into fall risk. The aim of this study was to attempt to classify elderly fallers and non-fallers, as well as control subjects based on COP velocity measurements. Three groups of 10 subjects (controls, elderly fallers, and elderly non-fallers) were compared. Discriminant function analysis was able to correctly classify 90% of the subjects based only on COP velocity measurements. Further work is needed to determine whether this parameter might be of use in longitudinal measurement of fall risk in home-dwelling elderly.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls / prevention & control*
  • Adult
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Algorithms*
  • Female
  • Foot / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Manometry / methods*
  • Pattern Recognition, Automated / methods*
  • Postural Balance / physiology*
  • Pressure
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity