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Orv Hetil. 2002 Nov 17;143(46):2571-7.

[Role of nutritional care in hospitals in the prevention of disease-related malnutrition].

[Article in Hungarian]

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Egészségtudományi Kar, Dietetikai Tanszék, Semmelweis Egyetem, Budapest.


The prevalence of undernutrition is about 30% at admission to hospitals, and in many cases the nutritional risk is not recognized and significantly increases in patients during hospitalisation in Hungary. Undernutrition and acute rapid weight loss of as little as 2-3 kg (cc. 5%) in combination with disease increases the risk of complications, lowers resistance to infection, impairs physical and mental functioning and delays recovery. Undernourished patients are at greater risk for adverse medical outcomes than well-nourished ones. In most hospitals the nutritional risk of patients is not determined and nutritional treatment plan isn't developed; fewer than 10 Nutritional Support Teams are established in hospitals. Nutritional care of ill patients is considered as a part of clinical treatment in very few hospitals in Hungary. There is no adequate recognition of the problem of undernutrition. The simplest and safest way to provide nutritional support is the adequate energy rich oral nutrition. If the oral nutrition fails or is inappropriate then artificial nutritional support becomes necessary. Nutrition is the most cost effective measure to prevent the complications of diseases. To improve the intolerable situation it would be necessary to increase the nutritional knowledge and the awareness of health care teams of the real importance of nutritional status in illnesses, and improve the quality of hospital food and eating conditions and environment.

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