get up a bed only for 10 seconds. A seemingly trivial test, but one that offers valuable information about the state of health. A new study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine has shown, in fact, that from the middle age those who do not pass the test have almost twice the risk of death for whatever reason I enter ten years. This is the first correlation that is established between the loss of balance And this state of health in general, and could become a simple and important diagnostic tool to be performed in the routine examinations of the elderly.
Aging is associated with a progressive decrease in physical condition and, in particular, a reduction in physical condition. muscle powerfrom flexibilityofbalance and changes in body composition. Unlike muscle strength and flexibility, the ability to stop balance it remains unchanged until the age of fifty, after which, however, it begins to decline rapidly. And its importance is far from marginal, if we consider that, among the elderly, the cau I am the second Cause of death for unintentional injuries around the world. To date, however, there are few data that link the balance with the state of health in general (and not only in relation to falls), and the routine examinations that middle-aged or older people undergo do not. provide for no evaluation of this parameter.
What the test consisted of
The test was performed within a larger study conducted at Brazil and began in 1994, the Clinimex Exerciseswhich aimed to investigate the relationship between various parameters related to fitness andphysical exercise with the factors of risk cardiovascularmaintaining the status of Health and the risk of death. Between exercises, participants were asked to try to stay balance in one a bed per 10 seconds. The way to do it was the same for everyone: the instep of the free leg had to be placed on the back of the leg holding the body, and the arms had to be kept to the sides with the gaze fixed forward. Eventually, participants had up to three attempts with both feet to succeed.
In the study the researchers considered 1702 aged people 51 and 75 years at the time of the first visit, which took place between February 2009 and December 2020. All participants were white-skinned Brazilians and approximately two-thirds (68%) were men. Along with the evaluation of the balance test, the weightlook at skin thickness (o plicometry) He was born in waist, and an overall assessment of the medical history was made. In total, more than one in five participants (20.5%, to be precise) did not pass the test. As expected, the failure rate increased with age, almost doubling every five years from the age of 51-55. In particular, almost the 5% of the participants among the 51-55 years he was unable to balance for 10 seconds on one leg, a percentage that went up 37% between 66 ei 70 anni, i al 54% aged between and 71 ei 75 years. In twenty years, among the youngest and the oldest, the probability of failing the test increased more than eleven times.
A possible relationship between balance and health
After performing the balance test and all other Clinmex Exercise exams, the health conditions of the participants were monitored for a few years. In total, 7% of participants died due to cancer, cardiovascular diseasesdiseases respirators and complications due to the contraction of the virus SARS-CoV-2. The researchers then looked for a correlation between the onset of death, the health status of these people, and the result of the balance test they performed. Between deceasedthe 17.5% had not passed the test, while only the 4.5% it had happened. In addition, those who failed the test showed one state from worse health: many were obese or suffering heart diseasethey had high pressure and suboptimal levels of fat in the blood. Finally, in the group of those who did not pass the test, the start of type 2 diabetes he was three times taller.
Taking all the data together, the researchers estimated that those who did not pass the balance test had an 84% higher risk of dying from any cause in ten years. The reason? At the moment, it is unknown. The result of the study only shows that it may be worthwhile for the elderly to include a simple balance test among other diagnostic tests to assess general health and the risk of developing a serious illness or death.