New Study Shows Link Between Alzheimer's and Falls

Tim Watt  |  August 12, 2011

Examining catscansA new study has revealed that an increased number of falls may be related to a higher risk for Alzheimer's disease, according to USA Today. Researchers discovered that older adults whose brain scans showed signs of amyloid, a sign of early Alzheimer's disease, also had double the risk for falling.

This could be a unique way for families to gauge whether a family member may be in need of a new living arrangement in the near future. Alzheimer's disease is notoriously hard to detect in its early stages and when a loved one finally does need care, many Americans are left unprepared. In this case, it may be best to help a senior transition to an assisted living community, where his or her needs can be met by experienced medical staff around the clock.

"The fall is due to some change that's disease-related," William Thies, chief medical and scientific officer for the Alzheimer's Association, explained to the publication. "We talk about memory, but that's not the presenting problem for everybody. For a pretty big size group it's spatial orientation."

Falls are a serious medical problem for many seniors. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that one in three Americans age 65 and over fall each year, incidents that can lead to head trauma, broken hips and impaired mobility.  

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