Supportive Care in Cancer

, Volume 24, Issue 9, pp 3681–3684 | Cite as

Fall-risk prediction in older adults with cancer: an unmet need

  • Tanya M. WildesEmail author
  • Brittany Depp
  • Graham Colditz
  • Susan Stark


Falls in older adults with cancer are more common than in noncancer controls, yet no fall-risk screening tool has been validated in this population. We undertook a cross-sectional pilot study of the Falls Risk Questionnaire (FRQ) in 21 adults aged ≥65 receiving systemic cancer therapy. Participants completed the FRQ, geriatric assessment measures, and a measure of fear-of-falling. The recruitment rate was 87.5 %, with 95.2 % completion of the FRQ and additional geriatric assessment and quality of life measures. The FRQ correlated significantly with the Timed Up and Go test (Pearson r 0.479, p = 0.028). In addition, the FRQ score correlated directly with fear-of-falling and inversely with QOL, particularly physical health and neurotoxicity subscales. In conclusion, the FRQ was feasible in older adults receiving cancer therapy and correlates with measures of physical performance, functional status, and fear-of-falling. The FRQ may prove to be a valuable fall-risk screening tool to implement fall-prevention interventions in this vulnerable population of older adults with cancer.


Cancer Aging Falls Geriatric assessment 



This publication was made possible by Grant Number 1K12CA167540 through the National Cancer Institute (NCI) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Grant Number UL1 TR000448 through the Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) program of the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) at the National Institutes of Health. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official view of NCI, NCATS, or NIH.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

520_2016_3312_MOESM1_ESM.docx (14 kb)
Table S1 (DOCX 14 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tanya M. Wildes
    • 1
    Email author
  • Brittany Depp
    • 2
  • Graham Colditz
    • 3
  • Susan Stark
    • 4
  1. 1.Division of Medical OncologyWashington University School of MedicineSt. LouisUSA
  2. 2.Siteman Cancer CenterWashington University School of MedicineSt LouisUSA
  3. 3.Division of Population Health SciencesWashington University School of MedicineSt LouisUSA
  4. 4.Program in Occupational TherapyWashington University School of MedicineSt LouisUSA

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