Category: Cross-Cutting; Cross-Cutting
To assess the differences in participation between people aging with a long-term physical disability (PAwLTPD) who have fallen in the past 12 months and those who have not.
Participation-focused cross-sectional study.
Setting : A survey was administered to community-dwelling PAwLTPD.
Participants (or Animals, Specimens, Cadavers) :
A convenience sample of 252 PAwLTPD who were aged 45 to 65 years, living with a physical disability for at least five years, and English-speaking was recruited through disability organizations, aging organizations, and social media.
Interventions : Not applicable
Main Outcome Measure(s) : Participation in activities was ascertained by asking the participants, “Do you perform this activity now?” The activities included: interior household chores, exterior household chores, employment, physical exercise, participation in civic or religious activities, personal leisure, social activities/helping others, and community leisure. The response options were: no; yes, without help; yes, with unpaid help; yes, with paid help; and yes, with both paid and unpaid help.
Results : The activity least frequently performed was employment (22%), and the activity most performed was personal leisure (96%).
Sixty-five percent of participants had fallen in the past 12 months. Compared to those who had not fallen, this group reported with significantly more frequency that they do not perform employment (p = 0.019) activities; that they use help to perform interior (p = 0.007) and exterior (p = 0.009) household chores and to manage medical conditions (p = 0.004); and that they use unpaid help to manage medical conditions (p = 0.047), to engage in social activities and help others (p < 0.001), and for community leisure (p = 0.019).
Conclusions : PAwLTPD who are prone to falling may participate in certain activities less often than PAwLTPD who are not prone to falling. PAwLTPD who are prone to falling may need more help to perform the activities that they do perform.
Sandra Espin-Tello– Postdoctoral Research Associate, Washington University in St. Louis, St Louis, Missouri
Kerri Morgan– Assistant Professor, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri
Susan Stark– Associate Professor, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri