May is Osteoporosis and Arthritis Awareness Month!

Risks associated with aging include complexities from falls and fractures. Osteoporosis and arthritis are two common conditions that create complexities with managing aspects of mobility, gait, and strength in the aging process. All of which are factors in identifying fall risk and ultimately fracture risk. Osteoporosis is considered a disease of the elderly characterized by a reduction in bone mineral density. After age 45, there is a known decline in muscle mass and tone. Falls after the age of 65 show an increase in complications where 15-20% of those impacted will see a decline in function leading to severe physical disability and a loss of independence (Moga, et al., 2020). These declines in independence are also associated with the loss of function resulting from disease processes like that of arthritis. Functions of the hand and the decline in grip strength and dexterity may also contribute to functional decline when disease of peripheral artery disease, obesity, and cognitive impairments were also present (Siviero, et al., 2020). Managing changes in progressive functional deterioration through monitoring of power, performance, and muscle force are integral in preserving function (Genest, et al., 2021). Through the interdisciplinary assessments of physical and occupational therapy professionals, Elite engages in comprehensive care planning. This involves a home evaluation for potential fall risks and obstacles. This also includes assessing a patient’s baseline for current physical condition and potential risk factors.

Home health services through Elite Home Health & Hospice engages a comprehensive approach to assure that the approach is based in researched and functional integrations. Our mutual goal with the patient and providers is to identify and treat to meet the patient’s needs.

Resources for osteoporosis and arthritis include:

Professionals in physical therapy and occupational therapy utilize their unique skills to assess not only the patient’s function, but their living environment and their desired activities. Approaches like this build patient buy-in to the rehabilitative process and engage the patient where mobility needs are vital and meet the goal of ongoing independent living. Further, Elite engages professionals who have a passion for patients in the geriatric phase of life. This means the approach to recovery will acknowledge the changes the body experiences with age, the role of comorbid conditions, and the variations in recovery expected.  Progress and results are shared to support collaboration. Consider Elite as part of the treatment plan!