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Promoting mobility after hip fracture (ProMo): study protocol and selected baseline results of a year-long randomized controlled trial among community-dwelling older people

Sarianna Sipilä1*, Anu Salpakoski12, Johanna Edgren12, Ari Heinonen2, Markku A Kauppinen1, Marja Arkela-Kautiainen3, Sanna E Sihvonen4, Maija Pesola5, Taina Rantanen12 and Mauri Kallinen6

Author Affiliations

1 Gerontology Research Centre, University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä, Finland

2 Department of Health Sciences, University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä, Finland

3 Department of Physiotherapy, Central Finland Central Hospital, Jyväskylä, Finland

4 JAMK University of Applied Sciences, Jyväskylä, Finland

5 Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology, Central Finland Central Hospital, Jyväskylä, Finland

6 Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Central Finland Central Hospital, Jyväskylä, Finland

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BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2011, 12:277  doi:10.1186/1471-2474-12-277

Published: 7 December 2011



To cope at their homes, community-dwelling older people surviving a hip fracture need a sufficient amount of functional ability and mobility. There is a lack of evidence on the best practices supporting recovery after hip fracture. The purpose of this article is to describe the design, intervention and demographic baseline results of a study investigating the effects of a rehabilitation program aiming to restore mobility and functional capacity among community-dwelling participants after hip fracture.


Population-based sample of over 60-year-old community-dwelling men and women operated for hip fracture (n = 81, mean age 79 years, 78% were women) participated in this study and were randomly allocated into control (Standard Care) and ProMo intervention groups on average 10 weeks post fracture and 6 weeks after discharged to home. Standard Care included written home exercise program with 5-7 exercises for lower limbs. Of all participants, 12 got a referral to physiotherapy. After discharged to home, only 50% adhered to Standard Care. None of the participants were followed-up for Standard Care or mobility recovery. ProMo-intervention included Standard Care and a year-long program including evaluation/modification of environmental hazards, guidance for safe walking, pain management, progressive home exercise program and physical activity counseling. Measurements included a comprehensive battery of laboratory tests and self-report on mobility limitation, disability, physical functional capacity and health as well as assessments for the key prerequisites for mobility, disability and functional capacity. All assessments were performed blinded at the research laboratory. No significant differences were observed between intervention and control groups in any of the demographic variables.


Ten weeks post hip fracture only half of the participants were compliant to Standard Care. No follow-up for Standard Care or mobility recovery occurred. There is a need for rehabilitation and follow-up for mobility recovery after hip fracture. However, the effectiveness of the ProMo program can only be assessed at the end of the study.

Trial registration

Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN53680197