Quantitative assessment of bed rise difficulty in young and elderly women.
To describe the motions which occur during rising from bed, specifically the motions that appeared to characterize difficulty in rising from a bed in older adults. Development of a Mobility assessment tool. Retirement center and two university laboratories. Three groups of female volunteers: young controls (n = 17, mean age 24), community-dwelling older adults (n = 12, mean age 71), and retirement center-dwelling older adults who admitted to difficulty in rising from a bed (n = 15, mean age 86). Videotaping of motions occurring during controlled rises from a supine to sitting position. These motions were rated on the specially developed Bed Rise Difficulty (BRD) scale, a scale designed to measure movements that characterize difficulty in rising from a bed in older adults. Subject groups were compared in total BRD score, individual BRD item score, and total time to rise. Item relationships and scale reliability were also assessed. Older adults with no apparent difficulty in rising based on total time to rise or on the BRD score nevertheless showed differences in upper extremity use when compared to young controls. Older adult subjects with difficulty in rising from a bed, when compared to other older adults with no apparent difficulty, differed more often in their upper extremity and leg use to facilitate the rise. Five BRD scale items, including use of extremity pushes, discontinuity of trunk and leg motion, multiple shoulder/pelvic adjustments, multiple leg adjustments, and poor vertical heel clearance may have best indicated true bed rise difficulty. These data provide a reliable and valid method to characterize difficulty in rising from a bed and provide the basis for biomechanical analyses of the strength and joint ranges of motion required to rise from a bed.