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Malnutrition in hospitalised elderly patients
Linköping University, Department of Medicine and Care, Nursing Science. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences.
1993 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The aim of the present study was to assess nutritional status in elderly patients admitted to geriatric clinic and emergency care hospital, to describe the differences between malnourished and well-nourished patients, to study changes of nutritional status during the recovery period and to evaluate the effects of dietary supplementation.

In a geriatric clinic, 501 newly admitted patients were randomly allocated either to a group that received an extra nutritional supplementation or to one that did not. These groups were followed during the hospital stay for up to 26 weeks. In addition, fifty patients with hip fracture and fifty with acute stroke were followed for two months during recovery.

The main measurements were: nutritional status assessed by using anthropometric measurements, serum protein analyses and delayed hypersensitivity skin tests; demographical, social and medical characteristics; a modified Norton scale, including mental condition, activity, mobility, food intake, fluid intake and general physical condition; the development and healing of pressure sores.

The prevalence of protein-energy malnutrition was 28.5% among elderly admitted to the geriatric clinic, 38% among patients with hip fracture, and 8% among those with acute stroke. Nutritional status on admission to the emergency care hospital did not predict the patients' discharge or need of prolonged hospital care. During the recovery period, the nutritional status of all patients deteriorated, but significantly more in those who remainedhospitalised. There were no significant differences in functional status between malnourished and well-nourished patients on admission to emergency care hospital, while on admission to the geriatric clinic the malnourished patients had significantly impaired functional status. Significantly more patients with protein-energy malnutrition had, or developed, pressure sores. Nutritional supplement, taken as part of the standard hospital diet, generally preserved the patients' nutritional status and functional condition and reduced the mortality especially among initially well-nourished patients.

The findings highlight the importance of sufficient and nourishing food so as to maintain good nutritional status and prevent the development of malnutrition.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköpings universitet , 1993. , 57 p.
Linköping University Medical Dissertations, ISSN 0345-0082 ; 391
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-27550Local ID: 12211ISBN: 91-7870-935-0OAI: diva2:248102
Public defence
1993-07-15, Birgittaskolans aula, S:t Larsgatan 44, Linköping, 09:30 (Swedish)
Papers, included in the Ph.D. thesis, are not registered and included in the posts from 1999 and backwards.Available from: 2009-10-08 Created: 2009-10-08 Last updated: 2012-07-20Bibliographically approved

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