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Falls Prevention in Older Adults: Counseling and Preventive Medication

Release Date: May 2012

Recommendation Summary

Summary of Recommendations

PopulationRecommendationGrade
(What's This?)
Community-Dwelling Older Adults, Aged 65 Years or Older

The USPSTF recommends exercise or physical therapy and vitamin D supplementation to prevent falls in community-dwelling adults aged 65 years or older who are at increased risk for falls.

No single recommended tool or brief approach can reliably identify older adults at increased risk for falls, but several reasonable and feasible approaches are available for primary care clinicians. See the Clinical Considerations section for additional information on risk assessment.

 
The USPSTF recommends the service. There is high certainty that the net benefit is moderate or there is moderate certainty that the net benefit is moderate to substantial.
Community-Dwelling Older Adults, Aged 65 and Older

The USPSTF does not recommend automatically performing an in-depth multifactorial risk assessment in conjunction with comprehensive management of identified risks to prevent falls in community-dwelling adults aged 65 years or older because the likelihood of benefit is small. In determining whether this service is appropriate in individual cases, patients and clinicians should consider the balance of benefits and harms on the basis of the circumstances of prior falls, comorbid medical conditions, and patient values.

See the Clinical Considerations section for more information about providing this service for individual patients.

The USPSTF recommends against routinely providing the service. There may be considerations that support providing the service in an individual patient. There is at least moderate certainty that the net benefit is small.

Clinical Summary

Clinical summaries are one-page documents that provide guidance to primary care clinicians for using recommendations in practice.

This summary is intended for use by primary care clinicians.

 
Current as of: September 2013

Internet Citation: Recommendation Summary. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. September 2014.
http://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/Page/Topic/recommendation-summary/falls-prevention-in-older-adults-counseling-and-preventive-medication

USPSTF Program Office   540 Gaither Road, Rockville, MD 20850