Highlights of this issue include a reading list on "Falls and Neurological Disorders", updates from Age-Friendly Communities Ontario Outreach Initiative, Baycrest, Brainxchange, Bruyère Research Institute, Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation, Regional Geriatrics Program, Senior Friendly Hospitals, information about Change Day Ontario, National Bereavement Day and a platform grant from the Brain Foundation Canada as well as a listing of upcoming events. Sign up to receive Linkages directly here.

This reading list provides links to and summaries of a variety of open source resources related to falls and neurological disorders. Resources related to Parkinson's disease, Mulitple Sclerosis, Stroke, Traumatic Brain Injury, Dementia and/or Cognitive Impairment are included. 4 pages. 

This study aimed to complete a comprehensive investigation of factors which contribute to a fear of falling in individuals with idiopathic Parkinson’s disease. Functional balance performance, dependence in ADLs, and fatigue were independently associated with fear of falling.  

This study included 141 participants with the mean age of 68 years with Parkinson’s disease. Participant falls and near falls were tracked daily for a 6 month period. The investigators found that the strongest contributing factor was fear of falling followed by a history of near falls and retropulsion.

The authors of this article argue the benefit of classifying recurrent fallers into sub-groups based on fall frequency. Fall prevention and management strategies targeting specific sub-groups of people with Parkinson's disease should be investigated and evaluated in their efficacy to reduce fall frequency.

Perturbation-based balance training is an intervention including repeated postural perturbations aimed at improving control of rapid balance reactions. This study concluded that this kind of intervention appears to reduce fall risk among older adults and those with Parkinson’s disease.

Tuesday, November 14th from 11:30am to 12:30 pm EST.  Dr. Almeida, Director of the Sun Life Financial Movement Disorders Research & Rehabilitation Centre at Wilfrid Laurier University will be presenting about a way to systematically consider the underlying factors that may underlie balance symptoms as well as their interactions in order to identify novel treatment strategies for Parkinson's disease. Register here.

The Behavioural Supports Ontario (BSO) project is a province-wide, regionally implemented, evidence-informed change strategy that utilizes quality improvement principles and knowledge translation best practices as critical enablers. This paper describes the project and key lessons learned in the implementation of this initiative that can be applied to other jurisdictions wishing to enable large-scale system redesign and sustainable system change.

Dementia is not a specific disease. Many diseases can cause dementia, including Alzheimer's disease, vascular dementia (due to strokes), Lewy Body disease, head trauma, fronto-temporal dementia, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, Parkinson’s disease, and Huntington’s disease. These conditions can have similar and overlapping symptoms. 

This information sheet gives an overview of Parkinson’s disease, the symptoms, diagnosis, risk factors and treatment options.

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