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News2012January › Common two-drug combination makes elderly (and the young) more likely to fall › January 2012

Common two-drug combination makes elderly (and the young) more likely to fall

A combination of two prescription drugs can make you so unsteady on your feet that you're very likely to suffer a bad fall - irrespective of your age, new research has discovered

A combination of two prescription drugs can make you so unsteady on your feet that you're very likely to suffer a bad fall - irrespective of your age, new research has discovered.
Although we associate unsteadiness as a sign of getting old, researchers have found that a cocktail of a cholesterol-lowering statin and an antihypertensive for raised blood pressure dramatically increases the risk of a serious fall that requires hospital treatment in all age groups.
Researchers from the University of Auckland estimate that people of any age taking the two drugs are 2.5 times more likely to have a fall serious enough to require hospital treatment compared to someone who is not on medication.
They made the discovery after examining the records of people aged between 25 and 60 years who had suffered a serious fall. Of these, 340 were taking the drug combination.
The researchers eliminated other possible causes of unsteadiness, including alcohol, lifestyle factors, and sleep deprivation.
(Source: Injury Prevention, published online, 16 January 2012).

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