Falls Awareness Week

Statistics provided by the NHS show that every year in England and Wales about 700,000 people visit hospital casualty departments after having sustained a head injury, and, fortunately, 90% of the patientsa�� injuries are classed as minor head injuries.

Medical practitioners assess head injuries using the Glasgow Coma Scale which is a neurological scale that aims to provide an objective way of recording the conscious state of a patient.A�It scores patients on whether they can make any noise (verbal response), whether they can move (physical reflexes) and how easily they can open their eyes. The scale is 3 to 15, with the lowest possible score of 3 meaning the patient is unconscious and cannot respond at all, and a score of 15 meaning there is little or no damage to the brain.

It is recommended that a friend or family member should watch a person who has suffered a minor head injury for 48 hours following the accident to check for any changes in their condition, however thankfully serious complications from a minor head injury are rare.

The 3 main causes of minor head injuries are falls, road traffic accidents and assaults.A� Falling represents a serious problem for older people and it is believed that around 30% of over 65s suffer a fall, however, they often do not attend for medical treatment at hospital A&E Departments.A� Each year Age UK holds a a�?Falls Awareness Weeka�� to raise attention to this health problem and it is being held during 18 June-22 June 2012.A�To obtain more information visit Age UKa��s website: www.ageuk.org.uk