Article Text

Download PDFPDF

SAT0741-HPR Physical performance and gait speed of faller and non-faller elderly people with knee osteoarthritis living in the community
  1. M Karapinar,
  2. A Abit Kocaman,
  3. N Kirdi
  1. Department of Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation, Hacettepe University, Ankara, Turkey


Background Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most prevalent chronic degenerative joint disease in the elderly population. The main signs and clinical symptoms of this disease are pain, edema, stiffness, and articular instability. OA is considered to be an intrinsic risk factor for the occurrence of falls. Falls constitute as one of the major public health concerns. They frequently have a negative impact on the daily life of elderly people and could lead an increase of dependence, fear of new falls, fractures, immobility and death.

Objectives The purpose of this study was to compare physical performance and gait speed among older people with knee osteoarthritis with and without a history of falls.

Methods The community-dwelling older people (65 and older) were recruited from different social senior groups and from the Hacettepe University Hospital Geriatric Outpatient Clinic. 102 patients were screened and 62 subjects with unilateral knee OA were evaluated. We used a standardized questionnaire, consisting of sociodemographic datas, cognitive function, and history of falls during the previous year. Thirty one elderly with a history of falls and also 31 without a history of falls were studied. Physical performance was evaluated with Short Physical Performance Test (SPPT). Walking speeds were measured with Six Metre Walk Test. Fear of falling (FOF) was assessed by a question (Do you have fear of falling? yes/no)

Results There were no differences between faller and non-faller elderly people in terms of age (76±8,4 years) and BMI (30,4±3,1 kg/m2). A statistically significant difference was found in terms of walking speeds and short physical performance test (p<0,005, p<0,005).

Conclusions As a result of this study, it was shown that the elderly people with knee OA and who have history of falls present worse performance in functional mobility and require a longer period of time to walking.


  1. Huang MH, Lin YS, Yang RC, Lee CL. A comparison of various therapeutic exercises on the functional status of patients with knee osteoarthritis. Semin Arthritis Rheum 2003; 32: 398–406.

  2. Hinman RS, Bennell KL, Metcalf BR, Crossley KM. Balance impairments in individuals with symptomatic knee osteoarthritis: a comparison with matched controls using clinical tests. Rheumatology 2002; 41: 1388–1394.


Disclosure of Interest None declared

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.