David Tomczyk ,Laura L Durb
Background: Falls among older adults are a major public health concern, with recurrent falls being especially troubling. This analysis was conducted to better understand the burden of recurrent fall-related hospitalizations in New York City Methods: Administrative data from the Statewide Planning and Research Cooperative System were used to describe patient-level characteristics for New York City residents 65 years and older who were admitted to and discharged from New York City hospitals for a fall-related injury between 2004 and 2011. Results: Of the 107,923 older adult residents hospitalized for a fall during the eight-year period, 16,574 (15%) were hospitalized at least one additional time for a fall-related injury during the same time period with a mean number of days between fall-related hospitalizations of about a year and a half (556 days). Females accounted for 72% of older adults hospitalized for more than one fall-related injury compared to 68% of older adults hospitalized for one fall-related injury. Adults aged 80-84 years and 85 years or older at the first fall accounted for 24% and 39%, respectively, of older adults hospitalized for more than one fall-related injury compared with 21% and 36%, respectively, of older adults hospitalized for one fall-related injury. Conclusion: The burden of fall-related injuries is high among females and adults 80 years or older in New York City, underscoring the need for providers to evaluate their patient’s individual risk, particularly to reduce the risk of recurrent falls. Future recurrent falls research should employ sufficient follow-up time, as recurrent falls may occur between one and two years after the first.