Another study showing the key importan ce of vitamin D for good health.
Giving people living in nursing facilities vitamin D can reduce the rate of falls, according to a new Cochrane Review. This finding comes from a study of many different interventions used in different situations. In hospitals, multifactorial interventions and supervised exercise programs also showed benefit.
Older people living in nursing facilities or who have been admitted to hospital are much more likely to suffer a fall than those living in the community. In these settings, falls fairly often result in head injuries and fractures, with rates of hip fracture more than ten times higher in nursing facilities than in the community. However, prevention is complicated as falls usually happen for several or many different reasons.
The current review included 41 trials involving 25,422 older people, who were mostly women. Five trials tested the effects of giving vitamin D to patients in nursing facilities, where it was found to be an effective measure for preventing falls.
The researchers found that multifactorial interventions, which often incorporated exercise, medication, or environmental factors including appropriate equipment, reduced the risk of falls in hospitals. In nursing homes, the effects of multifactorial interventions were not significant overall.