Immobility and falls

Clin Geriatr Med. 1998 Nov;14(4):699-726.


Immobility is a common problem for hospitalized older adults. Excessive bed rest results in multiple adverse physiologic consequences and may contribute to functional decline and increased risk for falls in the hospital setting. About 2% of hospitalized older adults fall during hospitalization. Risk factors for in-hospital falls includes cognitive impairment, mobility impairment, specific diagnoses, multiple comorbidities, and psychotropic medications. Appropriate actions to prevent immobility and falls include increasing exercise and activity levels, improving the hospital environment, and decreasing the use of psychotropic medications. Bed alarms and increased supervision for high-risk patients also may help prevent falls.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls*
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Immobilization / adverse effects*
  • Immobilization / physiology