Brief Report  |   April 2015
Fear of Falling in People With Chronic Stroke
Author Affiliations
  • Arlene A. Schmid, PhD, OTR, is Associate Professor, Department of Occupational Therapy, College of Health and Human Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins; arlene.schmid@colostate.edu
  • Sarah E. Arnold, MS, OTR, is Occupational Therapist, Indiana Hand to Shoulder Therapy Center, Indianapolis. At the time of the study, she was MS student, Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Indiana University, Indianapolis
  • Valerie A. Jones, MS, OTR, is Occupational Therapist, Franciscan St. Elizabeth Health, Lafayette, IN. At the time of the study, she was MS student, Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Indiana University, Indianapolis
  • M. Jane Ritter, MS, OTR, is Occupational Therapist, Lafayette Rehabilitation Services, Lafayette, IN. At the time of the study, she was MS student, Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Indiana University, Indianapolis
  • Stephanie A. Sapp, MS, OTR, is Occupational Therapist, Johnson Memorial Hospital, Franklin, IN. At the time of the study, she was MS Student, Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Indiana University, Indianapolis
  • Marieke Van Puymbroeck, PhD, CTRS, FDRT, is Associate Professor, Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management, College of Health and Human Development, Clemson University, Clemson, SC
Article Information
Neurologic Conditions / Stroke / Departments / Brief Report
Brief Report   |   April 2015
Fear of Falling in People With Chronic Stroke
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, April 2015, Vol. 69, 6903350020p1-6903350020p5. doi:10.5014/ajot.2015.016253
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, April 2015, Vol. 69, 6903350020p1-6903350020p5. doi:10.5014/ajot.2015.016253
Abstract

OBJECTIVE. We assessed the prevalence of fear of falling (FoF) in a sample of people with chronic stroke and compared multiple variables (balance, anxiety, depression, activity and participation, and stroke severity) in people with and without FoF.

METHOD. This study was a secondary analysis of data collected from a cross-sectional study of mobility after stroke in 77 participants with chronic stroke (>6 mo poststroke).

RESULTS. Of the 77 participants, 51 (66%) reported experiencing FoF. People with FoF had significantly decreased balance (p < .001) and activity and participation (p = .006) and significantly increased anxiety (p = .007). People with FoF also had significantly worse stroke severity (p = .001).

CONCLUSION. FoF is a prevalent concern in the chronic stroke population. The presence of FoF was associated with a variety of negative consequences. Occupational therapy practitioners should address FoF to help clients manage FoF and possibly improve recovery.