APDA American Parkinson Disease Association
Information & Referral Center

Fall Prevention - How? Why?

People with Parkinson's are at high risk of falling due to problems with balance, rigidity, and slowness of movement -- the primary motor symptoms of PD. Serious falls can lead to numerous injuries, including head injuries, broken hips, and other bone fractures. Complications from these injuries may require hospitilization or long-term rehabilitation. In some cases, falls can lead to death.

Some keys to preventing falls include exercise, good medication management and a safe home environment. Consider enrolling in a fall prevention program that may address some or all of these topics.

Consider talking a fall prevention program! Check out our list of fall prevention programs in Northern and Central California. Many fall prevention programs are at hospitals or senior centers.

Other good resources are listed below.

Relevant Publications - Downloadable

"Understanding Parkinson's Fall Prevention"
By the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, 2009
Good two-page fact sheet on fall prevention in PD.

Relevant Online Information

"Fall Prevention Center of Excellence"
This website has lots of great info on fall prevention.

"Safety at Home"
By Ivan Suzman, PDF News & Reviews, Parkinson's Disease Foundation, Summer 2005
This webpage (previously newsletter article) has lots of tips for home safety.

"31 Tips For Future Proofing Your Home"

By Easy Climber, November 27, 2016
Good infographic on this webpage for 31 ways to age-proof a home. Most of the tips are about fall prevention.

Relevant Online Lectures and Webinars

“Balancing Act: Fall Prevention in Parkinson’s”
By the National Parkinson Foundation, June 17, 2014
This 1-hour webinar by Dr. Bastiaan R. Bloem explains the importance of having a physical therapist to advise you in a safe exercise program, the many causes of falls for people with Parkinson’s disease, and the importance of reporting to your doctor if your falls occur in the On or Off state to individually tailor fall intervention.

This page first created in September 2012 by Robin Riddle with Stanford Parkinson's Community Outreach.

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