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Accidental Falls | The Effects of a Walking Program on Balance, Falls and Well Being in Individuals Residing in Long-term Care

Accidental Falls research study

What is the primary objective of this study?

The purpose of this study is to assess the effectiveness of a regular walking program (which inevitably involves human interaction) compared to a usual care condition and to a human interaction condition (without the extra walking program) in individuals residing in Long-Term Care (LTC). Outcomes of interest include: balance, strength, mobility, endurance, walking distance; rate and severity of falls; activities of daily living; mood and behaviour. It is hypothesized that participants taking part in the walking program will demonstrate maximal benefits compared to the no treatment control group (usual care) and the participants who will only receive social interaction. It is expected that benefits of the walking program will include decreased fall rates, and improved balance, endurance, strength, mood, behaviour, activities of daily living and quality of life indices. Given research findings that the addition of pleasant activities improves resident mood (Teri et al, 1997; 2003), it is expected that participants in the social interaction only group will demonstrate improvements in mood and other indices of quality of life.

Who is eligible to participate?

Inclusion Criteria: - Adults residing in a long term care facility - Able to follow simple instructions - Can ambulate with or without a walking aid for at least 10 meters - Willing to participate in the study procedures Exclusion Criteria: Exclusion criteria: - Cardiovascular event within past 6 months - Severe arthritis - Clinical significant vestibular disorder - Uncontrolled hypertension - Uncontrolled epilepsy - Fracture within the past 4 months - Admission into an acute care facility in last 4 months - Scheduled for surgery or hospitalization in next 6 months - Already participating in another regular exercise program (three or more times per week) aimed at improving balance or strength

Which medical condition, disease, disorder, syndrome, illness, or injury is researched?

Accidental Falls

Muscle Weakness

Gait, Unsteady

Depression

Behavior

Study Interventions

Interventions can include giving participants drugs, medical devices, procedures, vaccines, and other products that are either investigational or already available or noninvasive approaches such as surveys, education, and interviews.

Behavioral:Interpersonal InteractionParticipants will receive stationary 1:1 interaction time with the same research personnel who conduct the third group walking session at each individual care facility in order to control for the interpersonal interaction likely to be involved in the walking program (Interpersonal Interaction Group; IIG). This group will receive the equivalent interpersonal interaction time with research personnel as those participating in the WPG group. This interaction time will occur with the participant stationary, rather than walking with the researcher.

Behavioral:Walking ProgramParticipants will walk five times per week, supervised by a licensed physiotherapist. Subjects will in general gradually increase their daily supervised walking time as tolerated to a maximum of 30 minutes once per day. The distance and number of minutes walked each time will be recorded. Interpersonal interaction will occur during the walking sessions, and will be similar in quality and quantity to that during the Interpersonal Interaction Group.

Study Arms

Research studies and clinical trials typically have two or more research arms. An arm is a group of people who receive the same treatment in the study.

Usual CareParticipants will receive care as usual (Usual Care Group; UCG) that is provided by their long-term care unit.

Interpersonal InteractionParticipants will receive stationary 1:1 interaction time with the same research personnel who conduct the third group walking session at each individual care facility in order to control for the interpersonal interaction likely to be involved in the walking program. This group will receive the equivalent interpersonal interaction time with research personnel as those participating in the walking group. This interaction time will occur with the participant stationary, rather than walking with the researcher.

Walking ProgramParticipants will walk five times per week under the supervision of a licensed physiotherapist.

Study Status

Completed

Start Date: December 2010

Completed Date: October 19, 2018

Phase: N/A

Type: Interventional

Design:

Primary Outcome: Falls

Secondary Outcome: Fitness

Study sponsors, principal investigator, and references

Principal Investigator: Lilian U Thorpe, MD, PhD

Lead Sponsor: University of Saskatchewan

Collaborator: Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation

More information:https://clinicaltrials.gov/show/NCT01277809

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