Falling Forward: Tracing Technological Solutions for Fall Prevention in Older Adults (1996–2024)

Authors

  • Azliyana Azizan Universiti Teknologi MARA
  • Andy Sirada
  • Nova Relida Samosir

Abstract

Background: Falls pose a serious public health challenge, especially for older adults, resulting in significant health issues, loss of life, and substantial healthcare costs. Encouragingly, technological innovations have emerged as a promising approach to address the multifaceted complexities of fall prevention in this population. Aims: This study undertook a comprehensive bibliometric analysis to investigate the current state of research on technological solutions for fall prevention in older adults. Methods: Employing a bibliometric methodology, the researchers utilized the Web of Science (WoS) database to retrieve relevant research articles published between 1996 and 2024. Bibliometric analyses were conducted using Biblioshiny and VOSviewer software, examining publication trends, key contributors, research hotspots, thematic areas, highly influential articles, and emerging research topics. Results: The analysis encompassed 105 articles, revealing a gradual yet fluctuating growth pattern in this field after 2012. BMC Geriatrics, Gerontology, and JMIR Uhealth and Mhealth were identified as the most prominent publication outlets. The United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia emerged as the leading countries driving this research. Key research hotspots included virtual reality, digital health, eHealth, mHealth, falls, and balance training programs. Three primary research themes were discerned: 1) the use of virtual reality and balance training to reduce fall risk, 2) the development and application of digital tools for fall risk assessment and prevention, and 3) the investigation of multidisciplinary interventions and their impact on older adults' overall well-being and quality of life. The top 10 cited articles underscored the significance of virtual reality, wearable devices, smartphone technology, and fall prevention education and interventions. The emerging research topics were dominated by the application of virtual reality and augmented reality for balance training, smartphone-based fall detection and risk assessment, wearable monitoring devices, mHealth and telehealth interventions, digital feedback and exergames, home-based programs, and the exploration of digital biomarkers and gait analysis for fall risk prediction. Limitations: The study was confined to articles indexed in the WoS database, potentially excluding other relevant publications in the field. Findings: This bibliometric analysis provides a comprehensive overview of the current research landscape in the field of technological solutions for fall prevention in older adults, identifying key research themes, emerging topics, and the most influential studies. Implications: The findings of this study can inform future research directions, guide the development and evaluation of technological interventions, and support the translation of evidence-based strategies into clinical practice to enhance fall prevention efforts for the older adult population.

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Published

2024-05-11

How to Cite

Azizan, A., Andy Sirada, & Nova Relida Samosir. (2024). Falling Forward: Tracing Technological Solutions for Fall Prevention in Older Adults (1996–2024) . Environment-Behaviour Proceedings Journal, 9(29). Retrieved from https://ebpj.e-iph.co.uk/index.php/EBProceedings/article/view/5945

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