This Week At PRICE

A Pilot Investigation Addresses BMI and Pain


How does body composition and BMI relate to pain and pain sensitivity relate in older adults? In the article, ‘Body composition and body mass index are independently associated with widespread pain and experimental pain sensitivity in older adults: a pilot investigation’, Alisa Johnson, Jessica Peterson, Yenisel Cruz-Almeida, Heather Vincent and Todd Manini recruited older adults to better understand this link.

By measuring the presence and extent of widespread pain as well as pain sensitivity through surveys and common tests such as applied pressure and using heat and cold to help ascertain pain thresholds, researchers analyzed the collected data to identify any correlations or associations between body composition, BMI and the pain measures.

It was found that body composition and BMI independently affect both the presence of widespread pain and the sensitivity to pain in older adults. suggesting that maintaining a healthy body composition and BMI could potentially help manage pain in older adults.

The article has been published in Frontiers in Pain Research. The PDF can be accessed here!

Pilot Study Addresses Falls


Falls are the leading cause of injury for adults age 65 or older. Over 14 million older adults, which equates to every 1 in 4, fall every year. A new pilot study in Pilot and Feasibility Studies however, aims to see if a home-based program can help older adults reduce their risks of falling.

The study, ‘Protocol for a home-based self-delivered prehabilitation intervention to proactively reduce fall risk in older adults: a pilot randomized controlled trial of transcranial direct current stimulation and motor imagery’, which is headed by Clayton Swanson, Sarah Vial, Todd Manini, David Clark and Kimberly Sibille, combines two methods in its approach.

The transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS), which is a technique that uses a low electrical current to stimulate the brain

Motor Imagery (MI), which involves mentally practicing movements without actually doing them.

During the study, two groups of older adults at risk of falling are separated, with one group using the combined methods while the other does not. By incorporating a widely accessible non-invasive brain stimuli involved in motor control as well as mental exercises, the researchers hope to address a major concern for older adults that can lead to serious injuries.

The study is currently in the pilot phase, meaning it’s a preliminary investigation to see if this approach is practical and effective. If successful however, it could lead to larger studies and eventually a new method for helping older adults stay safe from falls.