Recurrent Falls Among Elderly Patients and the Impact of Anticoagulation Therapy.

Link to article at PubMed

Recurrent Falls Among Elderly Patients and the Impact of Anticoagulation Therapy.

World J Surg. 2018 Jun 29;:

Authors: Chiu AS, Jean RA, Fleming M, Pei KY

BACKGROUND: Falls are the leading source of injury and trauma-related hospital admissions for elderly adults in the USA. Elderly patients with a history of a fall have the highest risk of falling again, and the decision on whether to continue anticoagulation after a fall is difficult. To inform this decision, we evaluated the rate of recurrent falls and the impact of anticoagulation on outcomes.
METHODS: All patients of age  ≥ 65 years and hospitalized for a fall in the first 6 months of 2013 and 2014 were identified in the nationwide readmission database, a nationally representative all-payer database tracking patient readmissions. Readmissions for a recurrent fall within 6 months, and mortality and bleeding injuries (intracranial hemorrhage, solid organ bleed, and hemothorax) during readmission were identified. Logistic regression evaluated factors associated with mortality on repeat falls.
RESULTS: Of the 331,982 patients admitted for a fall, 15,565 (4.7%) were admitted for a recurrent fall within 6 months. The median time to repeat fall was 57 days (IQR 19-111 days), and 9.0% (1406) of repeat fallers were on anticoagulation. The rate of bleeding injury was similar regardless of anticoagulation status (12.8 vs. 12.7% not on anticoagulation, p = 0.97); however, among patients with a bleeding injury, those on anticoagulation had significantly higher mortality (21.5 vs. 6.9% not on anticoagulation, p < 0.01).
CONCLUSION: Among patients hospitalized for a fall, 4.7% will be hospitalized for a recurrent fall within 6 months. Patients on anticoagulation with repeat falls do not have increased rates of bleeding injury but do have significantly higher rates of death with a bleeding injury. This information is essential to discuss with patients when deciding to restart their anticoagulation.

PMID: 29959494 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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