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Senior Health

Recent fall

02/19/2009

Question:

I recently had a slip and fall in my kichen. I fell quite hard with my full weight falling agains a metal container which hit me squarely at waist level and slightly higher. I was away from home and did not go to a doctor. I was in serious pain for two days, no blood in my urine, some difficulty taking a full breath. Now a few days later, I have discomfort when I lie down in bed, and soreness throughout the day. It is getting better as I can take a full breath now, but I`m not sure whether I might have bruised a kidney or broken a rib or whether this is muscle pain as a result of a bad fall. What should I do?

Answer:

You need to see family doctor for evaluation and x-rays to confirm any bony injury. But the fact that you are getting better it may be simply deep bruising. You were lucky this time. Focus on prevention of falls and reduce your fall risk for the future. Your family doc can help you with this assessment including the use of medications, some of which increase the risk of falls. The literature suggests persons who experience a fall are going to fall again in the future, bathroom and kitchen are common areas. Go to CDC website for more information on prevention of falls.

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Response by:

Arvind   Modawal, MD, MPH, MRCGP Arvind Modawal, MD, MPH, MRCGP
Professor of Family & Community Medicine, Geriatrics and Palliative Care
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati