brand logo

Am Fam Physician. 1998;57(7):1497-1498

to the editor: I am a family physician in West Point, Neb., a town of 4,000. Four other physicians and I cover the emergency department at night. I have often wondered how to prevent falls in the elderly, as we see a number of elderly patients come in during the night with injuries. After getting up during the night for whatever reason, these elderly patients have tripped and fallen because they had become disoriented.

I have an idea which may have some merit for individuals who are in a nursing home or assisted care environment. Installing motion detector lights inside the apartment would enable an individual who has risen from bed during the night to see, and would decrease his or her chances of becoming disoriented. For certain individuals, this would work very well. For others, it could possibly provide too much stimulus and add to insomnia. Certainly, for those individuals at risk of falling, the trade-off may be acceptable.

Email letter submissions to Letters should be fewer than 400 words and limited to six references, one table or figure, and three authors. Letters submitted for publication in AFP must not be submitted to any other publication. Letters may be edited to meet style and space requirements.

This series is coordinated by Kenny Lin, MD, MPH, deputy editor.

Continue Reading

More in AFP

More in Pubmed

Copyright © 1998 by the American Academy of Family Physicians.

This content is owned by the AAFP. A person viewing it online may make one printout of the material and may use that printout only for his or her personal, non-commercial reference. This material may not otherwise be downloaded, copied, printed, stored, transmitted or reproduced in any medium, whether now known or later invented, except as authorized in writing by the AAFP.  See permissions for copyright questions and/or permission requests.