Audiologists’ Role in Assessing Risk of Falls Falls are a significant problem for older individuals and a growing medical concern with the projected increase in individuals over the age of 65. Falls can result in serious consequences such injury or death; however, residual psychological effects include reduction in independence and emotional well-being. Audiologists may be at a ... Article
Article  |   November 01, 2013
Audiologists’ Role in Assessing Risk of Falls
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Robin E. Criter
    Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE
  • Jessie N. Patterson
    Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE
  • Julie A. Honaker
    Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE
  • Financial Disclosure: Robin Criter is a doctoral candidate at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Jessie N. Patterson is doctoral student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Julie A. Honaker is an Assistant Professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
    Financial Disclosure: Robin Criter is a doctoral candidate at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Jessie N. Patterson is doctoral student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Julie A. Honaker is an Assistant Professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.×
  • Nonfinancial Disclosure: Robin Criter has an article in press related to the content of this article. Jessie N. Patterson has an article in press related to the content of this article. Julie A. Honaker has an article in press related to the content of this article and has previously published in the subject area.
    Nonfinancial Disclosure: Robin Criter has an article in press related to the content of this article. Jessie N. Patterson has an article in press related to the content of this article. Julie A. Honaker has an article in press related to the content of this article and has previously published in the subject area.×
Article Information
Balance & Balance Disorders / Articles
Article   |   November 01, 2013
Audiologists’ Role in Assessing Risk of Falls
SIG 8 Perspectives on Public Health Issues Related to Hearing and Balance, November 2013, Vol. 14, 22-34. doi:10.1044/phi14.1.22
SIG 8 Perspectives on Public Health Issues Related to Hearing and Balance, November 2013, Vol. 14, 22-34. doi:10.1044/phi14.1.22

Falls are a significant problem for older individuals and a growing medical concern with the projected increase in individuals over the age of 65. Falls can result in serious consequences such injury or death; however, residual psychological effects include reduction in independence and emotional well-being. Audiologists may be at a unique position given the relatively high number of falls reported in the audiology clinic and must be alert to possible risk factors for falls and aware of the resources available to help our patients on a path to prevention. Audiological risk factors and fall risk screening tools are discussed. Falls are multi-faceted and require a multi-disciplinary approach to assessment, management, and prevention; audiologists can provide unique clinical recommendations and expertise to reduce falling risk. A movement of our profession towards better understanding of falling risk factors, and initiating research aimed at identifying sensitive and specific time efficient measures to incorporate into any audiology practice, are necessary steps to putting our patients on the path to fall prevention.

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