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July 21, 2021

Preventing Falls and Tragedies that Come with Them | Dr. William Buxton

by Anthony Effinger

The Think Neuro podcast from Pacific Neuroscience Institute takes you into the clinic, operating room and laboratory with doctors and surgeons who are tackling the most challenging brain diseases and disorders. Host: Anthony Effinger

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Episode 18: Show Notes

“I’ve fallen, and I can’t get up.” That line is the source of countless jokes on late night television, but in real life, it’s anything but funny. One in three people over 65 fall each year. Those falls often lead to broken hips, and a quarter of elderly people who suffer a hip fracture die within a year, says Dr. William Buxton, a neurologist at PNI who specializes in preventing falls in people who are prone to them. There are many causes. Sedating medications have been linked to falls. Damage to nerves in the legs and feet from diabetes or excessive alcohol use can impair balance. A weak cardiovascular system can cause dizziness when standing up, too. There are so many causes, but there is one very good solution: exercise. Simple movement classes are great, says Dr. Buxton, and so is targeted physical therapy. Working with his colleague Dr. Verna Porter, Dr. Buxton has designed programs that have helped reduce falls among people with dementia, for whom fall prevention was considered impractical. Listen to this episode to learn why falls are no laughing matter, and how to prevent them.

About Dr. Buxton

William G Buxton MD
William G. Buxton, MD

William G. Buxton MD, FANA, FAANEM is board certified in Adult Neurology with Subspecialty Certification in Clinical Neurophysiology through the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology with additional certification in Electrodiagnostic Medicine through the American Board of Electrodiagnostic Medicine. He serves as Director of Neuromuscular and Neurodiagnostic Medicine and of Fall Prevention at Pacific Neuroscience Institute and has been recognized as a fellow of both the American Neurologic Association and the American Academy of Neuromuscular and Electrodiagnostic Medicine.

Check Out More Think Neuro Podcast Episodes

About the Author

Anthony Effinger

Anthony Effinger

Think Neuro's host is Anthony Effinger, an award-winning journalist who is fascinated with neuroscience and the workings of the brain. Anthony spent 24 years at Bloomberg News, where he covered all aspects of finance, with forays into science and health. In 2006, the Association of Health Care Journalists awarded him first prize for Playing the Odds, an in-depth piece on the changing strategies used to treat prostate cancer. These days, he is a staff writer at Willamette Week, a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper in Portland, Oregon, where he lives with his wife and two children.

Last updated: August 12th, 2021