Health Encyclopedia

 

Health Encyclopedia Home



Old-Age Specialists May Boost Recovery Among Injured Seniors

Old-Age Specialists May Boost Recovery Among Injured Seniors

THURSDAY, Dec. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Seniors who suffer an injury are more likely to regain their independence if they consult a geriatric specialist during their hospital stay, researchers report.

The study included people 65 and older with injuries ranging from a minor rib fracture from a fall to multiple fractures or head trauma suffered as a driver, passenger or pedestrian in a traffic accident.

A year after discharge from the hospital, the patients were asked how well they were able to perform daily activities such as walking, bathing, managing finances, light housework and shopping.

Those who had a consultation with a geriatrician during their hospital stay were able to return to about two-thirds more daily activities than those who did not, according to the study published recently in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Surgery.

"Trauma surgeons have long struggled with the fragility of their older trauma patients who have much greater health risks for the same injuries experienced by younger patients," senior study author Dr. Lillian Min, an assistant professor in the division of geriatric medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School, said in a university news release.

"We've come a long way in improving our survival rates of these patients, but what we didn't know was whether we were returning them to their homes and communities sicker than they were before," she said. "What we found was that geriatric interventions helped older patients take better care of themselves and be more independent."

Geriatricians specialize in the care of older people. It's estimated that people aged 65 and older will account for 40 percent of all U.S. trauma patients in over the next four decades.

"This information compels us to do more to help our older patients get back to normal life," Min said. "Our findings suggest that even small changes in care can lead to decreased complications and improve health outcomes for a vulnerable group. We have a responsibility to do what we can to strengthen collaborations between surgery and geriatric medicine doctors."

More information

The U.S. National Institute on Aging has more about older adults and falls.

SOURCE: University of Michigan, news release, Nov. 27, 2013

 
Related Items
Wellness Library
  Preventing Broken Bones
  Avoid Cane and Walker Injuries
  Preventing Falls One Step at a Time
  For Seniors: How to Prevent Falls
Daily News Feed
  Concussed Athletes May Not Be Good at Self-Reporting Recovery
  Having More Siblings Might Lower Your Divorce Risk
  Stressful Events May Raise Risk of Falls in Older Men, Study Finds
  Medical Harm Occurs in Nearly 43 Million Hospital Cases Each Year
  Head Injuries Common in Nursing Home Falls: Study
  Balance Training Seems to Prevent Falls by Elderly
  For Children of Teen Parents, Most Injuries Due to Falls: Study
  Age-Related Eye Differences May Cause Falls
  Get Fit Before You Hit the Slopes
  Rise in U.S. High Chair Injuries Stuns Experts
  Portable Bed Rails Can Pose Safety Hazard, FDA Says
  When Winter Fun Isn't So Fun
  Hospital Safety Improves for Heart Patients, Study Finds
  A Survival Guide for Winter's Threats
  Falls Top Car Crashes as Leading Cause of U.S. Spinal Injuries
  Walking May Help Older Men Sidestep Hip Fractures
  Blood Pressure Meds May Raise Risk of Serious Falls for Seniors
  Overdoses, Cellphone-Linked Car Crashes Among Top Causes of Fatal Injury in U.S.
  Vitamin D May Not Lower Seniors' Fall Risk
  People With More Education May Recover Better From Brain Injury
  Workplace Ladder Falls a Major Cause of Deaths, Injuries: CDC
  Those With Arthritis Face Higher Risk of Falls: CDC
  Doctor Shares Tips for Preventing Falls Among Seniors
  Tips for Keeping That Bounce House Safe
Adult Diseases and Conditions
  Head Injury
  Preventing Falls
Newsletters
  Obesity and Falls: A Risk Factor for Older Adults
Pediatric Diseases and Conditions
  Falls: Prevention
  Falls
  Falls--Injury Statistics and Incidence Rates