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Cognitive Frailty as a Predictor of Future Falls in Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Published:November 21, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jamda.2022.10.011

      Abstract

      Objectives

      To examine the association between cognitive frailty and the risk of future falls among older adults.

      Design

      Systematic review and meta-analysis.

      Setting and Participants

      Older people aged ≥60 years with cognitive frailty from community, hospital, or both.

      Methods

      PubMed, EMBASE, Web of Science, the Cochrane Library, Wanfang Database, China Knowledge Resource Integrated Database (CNKI), Weipu Database (VIP), and Chinese Biomedical Database (CBM) were searched for relevant studies published from the inception of the database until June 14, 2022. Stata 16.0 software was used to perform the meta-analysis. A random effects model was used to pool the prevalence of falls in older adults over age 60 years with cognitive frailty and the strength of the association between cognitive frailty and falls [odds ratios (ORs) and 95% CIs]. Quality assessment, heterogeneity, and sensitivity analyses were also conducted. A study protocol was registered in PROSPERO (CRD42022331323).

      Results

      The review included 18 studies in qualitative synthesis, 14 of which were in meta-analysis. Eleven sets of cross-sectional data involving 23,025 participants and 5 sets of longitudinal data involving 11,924 participants were used in the meta-analysis. The results showed that the overall prevalence of falls in 1742 people with cognitive frailty was 36.3% (95% CI 27.9-44.8, I2 = 93.4%). Longitudinal study results showed that cognitively frail individuals had a higher risk of falls (OR 3.02, 95% CI 2.11-4.32, I2 = 0.0%, P = .406), compared to robust participants without cognitive impairment; physically frail people (alone) had a moderate risk of falls (OR 2.16, 95% CI 1.42-3.30, I2 = 9.7%, P = .351); cognitively impaired people (alone) had a lower risk of falls (OR 1.36, 95% CI 1.03-1.79, I2 = 0.0%, P = .440). Among cross-sectional studies, cognitive frailty was associated with the risk of falls (OR 2.74, 95% CI 2.20-3.40, I2 = 53.1%, P = .019). Although high heterogeneity was noted among 11 cross-sectional studies reporting ORs, the sensitivity analysis showed that no single study significantly affected the final pooled results.

      Conclusions and Implications

      This systematic review and meta-analysis confirms the findings that cognitive frailty was demonstrated to be a significant predictor of future falls in older adults. However, further prospective investigations are warranted.

      Keywords

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