A screening tool with five risk factors was developed for fall-risk prediction in community-dwelling elderly

J Clin Epidemiol. 2011 Oct;64(10):1152-60. doi: 10.1016/j.jclinepi.2010.12.014. Epub 2011 Apr 3.


Objective: To develop a simple clinical screening tool for community-dwelling older adults.

Study design and setting: A prospective multicenter cohort study was performed among healthy subjects of 65 years and older, examined in 10 health examination centers for the French health insurance. Falls were ascertained monthly by telephone for 12-month follow-up. Multivariate analyses using Cox regression models were performed. Regression coefficients of the predictors in the final model were added up to obtain the total score. The discriminative power was assessed using the area under the curve (AUC).

Results: Thousand seven hundred fifty-nine subjects were included. The mean age was 70.7 years and 51% were women. At least one fall occurred among 563 (32%) participants. Gender, living alone, psychoactive drug use, osteoarthritis, previous falls, and a change in the position of the arms during the one-leg balance (OLB) test were the strongest predictors. These predictors were used to build a risk score. The AUC of the score was 0.70. For a cutoff point of 1.68 in a total of 4.90, the positive predictive value and negative predictive value were 72.0% and 72.7%, respectively.

Conclusion: A screening tool with five risk factors and the OLB test could predict falls in healthy community-dwelling older adults.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls / prevention & control*
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Epidemiologic Methods
  • Female
  • Geriatric Assessment / methods*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Risk Assessment / methods