Malnutrition and associated factors in elderly hospital patients: a Belgian cross-sectional, multi-centre study.

Nursing Science, Department of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Ghent University, Belgium.
Clinical nutrition (Edinburgh, Scotland) (Impact Factor: 3.27). 08/2010; 29(4):469-76. DOI: 10.1016/j.clnu.2009.12.013
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT In Belgium, general data on the prevalence of malnutrition are lacking. Prevalence rates are necessary to gain insight into the magnitude of malnutrition and to establish a nutrition policy that takes the limited health care resources into account. This study aimed to obtain insight into the prevalence of malnutrition in Belgian elderly hospital wards and to identify factors associated with the malnutrition prevalence.
A cross-sectional, multi-centre study in elderly wards of Belgian hospitals. The nutritional status was assessed using the Mini Nutritional Assessment. A standardised questionnaire was used to record demographic data and data on potential factors associated with malnutrition.
Out of 2329 elderly patients, 33% suffered from malnutrition. Almost 43% of the patients were at risk of malnutrition and 24% were well-nourished. Having swallowing difficulties, taste difficulties, and being transferred from a nursing home were strongly associated with being malnourished.
The malnutrition prevalence in Belgian elderly hospitals wards is similar to international figures. Elderly who have swallowing difficulties, taste difficulties, or coming from a nursing home may need adequate nutritional care. Given the negative impact of malnutrition on mortality and morbidity, an emphasis should be placed on an effective nutritional policy.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: An acute disease is regularly associated with inflammation, decreased food intake, and low physical activity; the consequence is loss of muscle mass. However, the restoration of muscle tissue is problematic, especially in older patients. Loss of muscle mass leads to further decrease of physical activity which leads, together with recurring disease, to the progressive muscle mass loss accompanied by loss of self-sufficiency. Early nutrition support and physical activity could reverse this situation. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine whether an active approach based on early nutritional therapy and exercise would influence the development of sarcopenia and impaired self-sufficiency during acute illness. Two hundred patients >78 y were admitted to a hospital internal medicine department and participated in a prospective, randomized controlled study. The patients were randomized to a control group receiving standard treatment (n = 100) or to an intervention group (n = 100). The intervention consisted of nutritional supplements (600 kcal, 20 g/d protein) added to a standard diet and a simultaneous intensive rehabilitation program. The tolerance of supplements and their influence on spontaneous food intake, self-sufficiency, muscle strength, and body composition were evaluated during the study period. The patients were then regularly monitored for 1 y post-discharge. The provision of nutritional supplements together with early rehabilitation led to increased total energy and protein intake while the intake of standard hospital food was not reduced. The loss of lean body mass and a decrease in self-sufficiency were apparent at discharge from the hospital and 3 mo thereafter in the control group. Nutritional supplementation and the rehabilitation program in the study group prevented these alterations. A positive effect of nutritional intervention and exercise during the hospital stay was apparent at 6 mo post-discharge. The early nutritional intervention together with early rehabilitation preserves muscle mass and independence in ill older patients hospitalized because of acute disease. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Nutrition 08/2014; 31(1). DOI:10.1016/j.nut.2014.07.010 · 3.05 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Purpose : To examine the relationship between ingestive skill performance while eating and drinking and frailty status in acutely-hospitalized elderly patients and to examine whether there is a relationship between the proportion of ingestive skill difficulties and Length of Hospital Stay (LOS) and discharge destination. Methods : Frail (n = 64) and robust (n = 40) acutely-hospitalized elderly patients were assessed using The McGill Ingestive Skills Assessment. Results : Forty-three ingestive skills were significantly more affected in frail patients (21.9% to 95.3%) versus robust patients (2.5% to 65.0%). When adjusting for frailty status, difficulties in self-feeding and texture management were related to prolonged LOS, and difficulties in positioning and liquid ingestion were related to discharge to institutional care. Conclusion : Ingestive skill difficulties among acutely-hospitalized frail elderly patients were frequent and characterized by great complexity. This necessitates a broad range of management strategies related to the patients’ ability in positioning, self-feeding skills, as well as oropharyngeal sensorimotor skills.
    Physical & Occupational Therapy in Geriatrics 12/2012; 30(4). DOI:10.3109/02703181.2012.736019
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This paper explores the lived experiences of older surgical patients' (aged 74 years and older) experienced challenges during a brief admission to hospital. Age, gender, polypharmacy, and the severity of illness are also factors known to affect the hospitalization process. For an ethnographic study using participant observation and interviews, surgical cancer patients (n = 9, aged 74 years and older) were recruited during admission to a Danish teaching hospital. Using ethnographic strategies of participant observation and interviews, each patient was followed through the course of 1 day during their stay at the hospital. Interviews were carried out with all patients during this time. Three areas of concern were identified as prominent in the patients' experiences and challenges during their short hospital stay: teeth and oral cavity, eating in a hospital setting, and medication during hospitalization. Short-term hospitalization requires focused collaboration between staff and patient concerning individual challenges from their teeth and oral cavity as support of nutritional needs during surgical treatment for cancer.
    International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-Being 02/2014; 9. DOI:10.3402/qhw.v9.22810 · 0.61 Impact Factor

Full-text (2 Sources)

Available from
Jun 4, 2014