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Home-based multidisciplinary rehabilitation can improve mobility, balance and strength after hip fracture surgery

Donohue K, Hoevenaars R, McEachern J, et al.  Home-based multidisciplinary rehabilitation following hip fracture surgery: What is the evidence? Rehabilitation Research and Practice. 2013;2013:875968.

Review question

What are the effects of home-based multidisciplinary rehabilitation programs on quality of life, physical functioning, strength and balance among older adults following hip fracture surgery?


Hip fractures are very common among older adults and can increase the risk of death, lead to long-term disability, increase dependency on others to perform daily functions, and negatively affect quality of life.

Home-based multidisciplinary rehabilitation programs may help ensure safe and efficient care, facilitate earlier discharge from hospital, and improve mobility, balance, strength and quality of life.

Little is known about the best setting in which to provide these programs.

How the review was done

A number of electronic databases were searched and studies that compared home-based multidisciplinary rehabilitation programs for hip fracture patients with no treatment, or with programs delivered in inpatient or outpatient settings, were included.

A total of 2,987 studies were identified in searches, and five were included in the review after assessments for eligibility were completed.

The authors did not acknowledge any funding sources for this review.

What the researchers found

Home-based multidisciplinary rehabilitation programs may be more effective than no treatment in improving mobility, balance and strength in older adults after hip fracture surgery.

The evidence is mixed about whether home-based multidisciplinary rehabilitation programs can improve quality of life or sustain improvements over long periods of time.

The evidence is inconclusive about whether home-based multidisciplinary rehabilitation programs are more effective than these same programs provided in inpatient or outpatient settings.


Home-based multidisciplinary rehabilitation programs appear to be more promising than no treatment for improving mobility, balance and strength in the short term, but it isn’t clear that they improve quality of life, or are more effective than programs delivered in inpatient or outpatient settings.

This summary is based on a review that was determined to be of medium methodological quality based on an assessment using the AMSTAR tool.

Related Web Resources

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