Feature Article

Falls and fractures in older people: identifying patients at high risk

Jesse Zanker, Gustavo Duque



Falls are a major contributor to fractures in older people, yet most are preventable. A comprehensive risk-identification approach can help GPs identify older people at risk of falls and fractures and facilitate multidisciplinary, targeted intervention. 

Key Points

  • The numbers of falls and fractures in Australia are increasing with the ageing of the population.
  • GPs play a key role in assessing and treating patients at risk of falls and fractures.
  • A falls risk assessment should be multifactorial.
  • Osteoporosis should be considered in any patient over the age of 50 years with a previous fracture or risk factors.
  • Useful tools are available for rapid assessment of falls and fracture risk.
  • Interventions to reduce falls and fractures should be targeted and individualised.

    Picture credit: © SilviaJansen/iStockphotos.com Model used for illustrative purposes only