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Exercise ‘cuts risk of falls in older diabetes patients’



By Yvette Martyn

Balance and resistance training in older patients with type 2 diabetes significantly reduces their risk of falls, a US study has found.

The study assessed the falls risk of 16 type two diabetes patients and 21 controls before and after a six week exercise program.

The diabetic patients were initially found to have a significantly higher falls risk compared to controls. After exercise training only the patients with diabetes saw significant improvements in their risk of falling. The training lasted for six weeks and involved an exercise programme three times a week.

Study leader Dr Steven Morrison, a research scientist from the school of physical therapy, Old Domininion University, Virginia, US said: ‘Older type two diabetes individuals are at increased falls risk. Following training, the type two diabetes group demonstrated improvements in balance, proprioception, lower-limb strength, reaction time and consequently, decreased risk of falling.

He added: ‘Results support the practice of prescribing mild-to-moderate exercise to individuals with type two diabetes to alleviate falls risk.’

Diabetes Care 2010, online Jan 22

Balance and resistance training in older patients with type 2 diabetes reduces their risk of falls, a US study has found Balance and resistance training in older patients with type 2 diabetes reduces their risk of falls, a US study has found