To determine the effectiveness of multifactorial intervention after a fall in older patients with cognitive impairment and dementia attending the accident and emergency department.
Randomised controlled trial.
274 cognitively impaired older people (aged 65 or over) presenting to the accident and emergency department after a fall: 130 were randomised to assessment and intervention and 144 were randomised to assessment followed by conventional care (control group).
Two accident and emergency departments, Newcastle upon Tyne.
Main outcome measures
Primary outcome was number of participants who fell in year after intervention. Secondary outcomes were number of falls (corrected for diary returns), time to first fall, injury rates, fall related attendances at accident and emergency department, fall related hospital admissions, and mortality.
Intention to treat analysis showed no significant difference between intervention and control groups in proportion of patients who fell during 1 year's follow up (74% (96/130) and 80% (115/144), relative risk ratio 0.92, 95% confidence interval 0.81 to 1.05). No significant differences were found between groups for secondary outcome measures.
Multifactorial intervention was not effective in preventing falls in older people with cognitive impairment and dementia presenting to the accident and emergency department after a fall.
What is already known on this topicMultifactorial intervention prevents falls in cognitively normal older people living in the community and in those who present to the accident and emergency department after a fallFall prevention strategies have not been tested by controlled trials in patients with cognitive impairment and dementia who fallWhat this study addsNo benefit was shown from multifactorial assessment and intervention after a fall in patients with cognitive impairment and dementia presenting to the accident and emergency departmentThe intervention was less effective in these patients than in cognitively normal older people