Aims: To assess functional fitness (FF) and its association with the risk of falling in older adults with diabetic neuropathy (DPN). Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted on 104 older adults (60 to 80 years) with DPN. A senior fitness test assessed FF, and the Fullerton Advanced Balance scale evaluated the risk of falling. Result: 71% of participants had below-average fitness in four or more FF parameters. Regression analysis shows that participants with lower performance on endurance (b = 0.05, p = 0.05), upper limb flexibility (b = 0.21, p = 0.01) and dynamic balance/agility fitness (b=-0.97, p < 0.001) are likely to have a higher risk of falling. Receiver Operating Characteristic analysis of FF parameters identified 56 steps and 9.88 seconds as cutoff scores for the 2-minute step test and 8-foot up-and-go test, respectively. Conclusion: FF of older adults with DPN is subpar. FF assessments could assist in identifying older DPN patients at risk of falling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)538-555
Number of pages18
JournalPhysical and Occupational Therapy in Geriatrics
Issue number4
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Rehabilitation
  • Gerontology
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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