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Restoring ‘Sixth Sense’ May Reduce Falls in Alzheimer’s

0 2 years ago

Falls are twice as common in patients with AD vs older individuals without the disorder and significantly increase the likelihood of institutionalization.

However, researchers recorded fewer falls in patients with a better functioning vestibular system, which detects head movements and plays a critical role in spatial orientation, posture, gait, and balance.

The results suggest that improving vestibular function with currently available therapies may prevent falls, something the researchers will investigate in a new clinical trial launching next month.

Dr Yuri Agrawal

“One of the most dangerous and impactful symptoms in terms of function in patients with Alzheimer’s disease is their increased predisposition to falls,” study investigator Yuri Agrawal, MD, department of otolaryngology–head and neck surgery, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, told Medscape Medical News.

“Alzheimer’s is the sixth leading cause of death in the US and some people actually say that that high mortality rate is because of their predisposition to falls and the injuries that occur.”


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