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Br J Community Nurs. 2013 May;Suppl:S26-9.

Acute stroke, dysphagia and nutritional support.

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  • 1Manchester Metropolitan University, UK.


Annually, an estimated 152000 people in the UK have a stroke, accounting for 11% of all deaths in England and Wales, but for those that survive, nutrition is key to the body's recovery. Consequences of malnutrition can include increased susceptibility to infection, delayed healing, impaired cardiovascular function, decreased muscle strength and depression. Given the complex nature of post-stroke dysphagia, it may not be possible that simple screening tools sufficiently identify those at risk of aspiration. If a patient is deemed unsafe or unable to meet their nutrition and hydration needs orally, guidelines recommend they should be considered for nasogastric feeding within 24 hours and a referral for dietetic/nutrition team input should be made accordingly. Speech and language therapists can predict early in a patient's journey whether or not prolonged dysphagia is likely. In turn, the need for long term artificial feeding can then also be anticipated.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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