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Accidental falls, cancer survivorship, cancer, rehabilitation



  1. Campbell, Grace PhD, MSW, RN, CRRN


Purpose: The aim of the study was to identify risk factors for falls among cancer survivors.


Design: Integrative literature review.


Methods: We searched PubMed, Embase, CINAHL, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, and PEDro for studies investigating fall risk in cancer. Reports of randomized controlled trials, descriptive studies (quantitative and qualitative), and theoretical papers meeting predetermined criteria were included. Quality ratings of included studies were done, and data were extracted and compiled by two independent reviewers.


Findings: Twenty-nine articles met inclusion criteria. Literature quality was moderate (median quality score: 1.67 out of 3 possible points). Heterogeneity of statistics and reporting methods precluded calculation of summary effect sizes, but physical function, cognitive function, balance/gait, and certain medication types appear to increase fall risk.


Conclusions and Clinical Relevance: Modifiable risk factors, such as those identified in this review, represent tangible intervention targets for rehabilitation professionals for decreasing the risk of falls among cancer survivors.