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News From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
June 26, 2018

Rise in Fall-Related Deaths

JAMA. 2018;319(24):2471. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.7978

The number of US older adults who die as the result of a fall has increased by 31%, from 18 334 in 2007 to 29 668 in 2016, according to a CDC report.

Overall, deaths attributable to falls increased by 3% annually among individuals aged 65 years or older. The greatest rate of increase, 3.9% per year, was among those aged 85 years or older. A 42% increase in fall-related deaths was documented between 2000 and 2006, suggesting an ongoing trend. Several factors are likely contributing to this trend. As the US population ages, the number of adults aged 85 years or older is expected to reach 8.9 million by 2030. In addition, greater survival rates from chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and stroke may shift the causes of death to other age-related conditions.