Risk factors for frequent falls in people with Parkinson's disease

J Parkinsons Dis. 2014;4(4):699-703. doi: 10.3233/JPD-140438.


Fall frequency varies among individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD). We aimed to determine whether risk factors that distinguish PD fallers from non-fallers are influenced by frequent falls. 205 people with PD participated in a 6-month prospective study. Factors in previously published fall risk models were analyzed for their associations with fall rates and frequent fallers. Fall history, freezing and impaired reactive balance were associated with fall rates and the proportion of frequent fallers (p < 0.05). These models were highly accurate in discriminating frequent fallers (area under curve 0.84-0.87). Interventions to manage freezing and reduce balance impairment may reduce fall frequency.

Keywords: Parkinson disease; accidental falls; postural balance; risk factors.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls*
  • Aged
  • Area Under Curve
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neurologic Examination
  • Parkinson Disease / complications*
  • Postural Balance / physiology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Sensation Disorders / etiology*