Linking stability to demographics, strength and sensory system function in women over 40 to support pre-emptive preventive intervention

Low Choy, N., Brauer, S. and Nitz, J. (2008) Linking stability to demographics, strength and sensory system function in women over 40 to support pre-emptive preventive intervention. Climacteric, 11 2: 144-154. doi:10.1080/13697130801931821


Author Low Choy, N.
Brauer, S.
Nitz, J.
Title Linking stability to demographics, strength and sensory system function in women over 40 to support pre-emptive preventive intervention
Journal name Climacteric   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1473-0804
1369-7137
Publication date 2008
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/13697130801931821
Volume 11
Issue 2
Start page 144
End page 154
Total pages 11
Place of publication Ireland
Publisher Informa Healthcare
Collection year 2009
Language eng
Subject C1
920201 Allied Health Therapies (excl. Mental Health Services)
111717 Primary Health Care
110603 Motor Control
Formatted abstract
Objective
To investigate differences in demographics, strength and sensory system function of 254 women aged 40-80 years categorized as stable, unsteady or unstable using simple balance tests.

Method
Demographics (age, height, weight, medications, co-morbidities, falls history, activity level), measures of quadriceps, hip abductor and adductor strength, somatosensory, visual and vestibular function were recorded. Subjects were categorized as stable (completed all trials), unsteady (failed one/two trials) or unstable (failed all trials) after three 10-s trials of bilateral stance (foam surface, eyes closed (EC)) and one-leg stance (firm surface, eyes open (EO)), and the results were compared.

Results
Both balance tasks identified women in their fifties as unstable (∼9%), with 60% of these women failing both tasks. More women were unsteady or unstable on foam EC (27%) than in one-leg stance EO (20%). Unsteady and unstable categories of women were older, reported more co-morbidities and medications and less activity than stable women. The women categorized as unstable in either test recorded weaker hip muscles, higher vibration thresholds, greater joint positioning error, reduced edge contrast sensitivity, low-contrast visual acuity and reduced dynamic visual acuity than the stable categories (p < 0.01). The two tests detected differences in characteristics of unstable women, with those failing one-leg stance EO being heavier, and those failing foam EC having weaker quadriceps.

Conclusion
These data link instability in women from the fifties to multiple demographic and sensorimotor factors associated with increased risk of falls, thus supporting use of balance tests in primary-care settings to assist referral for diagnostic assessment and pre-emptive interventions.
Keyword Screening
Balance Loss
Strength
Sensory System Function
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code

 
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Created: Tue, 04 Nov 2008, 15:29:42 EST