J Korean Acad Nurs.  2008 Oct;38(5):730-738. 10.4040/jkan.2008.38.5.730.

The Mediating Effect of Depression in the Relationship between Muscle Strength of Extremities and Falls among Community-Dwelling Elderly

Affiliations
  • 1College of Nursing, Pusan National University, Busan, Korea.
  • 2Department of Nursing, Silla University, Busan, Korea. kypark@silla.ac.kr

Abstract

PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to identify the mediating effect of depression in the relationship between muscle strength of extremities and falls among community-dwelling elderly.
METHODS
Two hundred forty-seven participants were recruited from a public health center, a hall for the aged and a school for the aged in B city. Face-to-face interviews were conducted using questionnaires from May to September of 2007. Data was analyzed with descriptive statistics, Pearson correlation, and multiple regression using the SPSS WIN 14.0 program.
RESULTS
There was a significantly negative relationship between muscle strength of lower extremities and falls, muscle strength of left upper extremity and falls, and muscle strength of right upper extremity and falls. Depression positively correlated with falls. Depression showed mediating effects between muscle strength of extremities and falls. Weakness of muscle strength of extremities increased depression and the increased depression increased the frequencies of falls.
CONCLUSION
For the effective management and prevention of community-dwelling older adults' falls, exercise programs including depression-decreasing strategies should be established. These exercise programs can decrease depression which is the mediator role between the degrees of muscle strength of extremities and falls.

Keyword

Elderly; Extremities; Muscle strength; Falls; Depression

MeSH Terms

*Accidental Falls/prevention & control
Aged
Aged, 80 and over
*Depression
Extremities/physiology
Female
Geriatric Assessment
Homes for the Aged
Humans
Male
*Muscle Strength
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