Comparison of retrospective and prospective falls reporting among community-dwelling older people: Findings from two cohort studies

Romli, Muhammad Hibatullah and Mackenzie, Lynette and Tan, Pey June and Chiew, Re On and Tan, Shun Herng and Tan, Maw Pin and Interv, Malaysian Falls Assessment and Longitudinal, Malaysian Elders (2021) Comparison of retrospective and prospective falls reporting among community-dwelling older people: Findings from two cohort studies. Frontiers in Public Health, 9. ISSN 2296-2565, DOI

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Background: While prospective recording is considered as the gold standard, retrospective recall is widely utilized for falls outcomes due to its convenience. This brings about the concern on the validity of falls reporting in Southeast Asian countries, as the reliability of falls recall has not previously been studied. This study aimed to evaluate the reliability of retrospective falls recall compared to prospective falls recording. Methods: A secondary analysis of data from two prospective recording methods, falls diary and falls calendar, from two different research projects were obtained and analyzed. Retrospective falls recall was collected either through phone interview or follow-up clinic by asking the participants if they had fallen in the past 12 months. Results: Two-hundred-sixty-eight and 280 elderly participated in the diary and calendar groups, respectively. Moderate (46%) and poor (11%) return rates were found on completed diary and calendar recording. Under-(32%) and overreporting (24%) of falls were found in diary compared to only 4% of overreporting for the calendar. Retrospective recall method achieved 57% response rate for the diary group (followed up at clinic) and 89% for the calendar group (followed up via telephone interview). Agreement between retrospective and prospective reporting was moderate for the diary (kappa =0.44; p < 0.001) and strong for the calendar (kappa = 0.89; p < 0.001). Conclusion: Retrospective recall is reliable and acceptable in an observation study within healthy community older adults, while the combination of retrospective and prospective falls recording is the best for an intervention study with frailer older population. Telephone interview is convenient, low cost, and yielded a high response rate.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Third world; Falls; Developing countries; Culture; Aged
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine
Depositing User: Ms Zaharah Ramly
Date Deposited: 14 Mar 2022 04:16
Last Modified: 14 Mar 2022 04:16

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