Malnutrition is significantly related to prolonged hospitalisation in older people.

 

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Nutritional status in patients aged over 65 years and its influence on the quantity and type of complications occurring 3, 6 and 12 months after hospitalisation: a clinical prospective study

Ostrowska et al JHND Early View Unknown.png

Background

Malnutrition in hospitalised patients is associated with frequent complications and increased mortality. The present study aimed to determine the prevalence of abnormal nutritional status in patients aged over 65 years with a diagnosis of cardiovascular diseases and also to determine its relationship with the duration of hospitalisation and the incidence of complications over 3, 6 and 12 months of observation. A comparison was also made of diagnostic performance between the various classifications used to diagnose abnormal nutritional status.

Methods

In total, 76 patients aged over 65 years with cardiovascular conditions were involved in the study. Abnormal nutritional status was identified on the basis of Mini‐Nutritional Assessment‐Short Form (MNA‐SF) test results, laboratory tests and European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) nutritional status assessment criteria. During 3, 6 and 12 months of observation, data were collected concerning the number of re‐hospitalisations and the presence of complications.

Results

Abnormal nutritional status was reported in 78% of participants. Malnutrition, as diagnosed on the basis of laboratory findings and also on the basis of ESPEN criteria comprising the value of fat free mass index (FFMI), was significantly related to prolonged hospitalisation and an increased complication rate. The results of the MNA‐SF test performed at baseline revealed no relationship with the incidence of complications during the first stage of the study.

Conclusions

Abnormal nutritional status was a common phenomenon in the group of patients under investigation. The set of criteria for assessing the nutritional status that had the highest association with the duration of hospitalisation and the incidence of complications includes laboratory tests and ESPEN criteria comprising the value of FFMI.

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