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JBI Database System Rev Implement Rep. 2019 Nov 28. doi: 10.11124/JBISRIR-D-19-00128. [Epub ahead of print]

Nutrition-related symptoms in adult survivors of critical illness when eating orally: a scoping review protocol.

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Nutrition and Dietetics, Yeovil District Hospital, Yeovil, Somerset, UK.
Institute of Health and Community, University of Plymouth, Plymouth, Devon, UK.
The University of Plymouth Centre for Innovations in Health and Social Care: a Joanna Briggs Institute Centre of Excellence.
Discipline of Acute Care Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA, Australia.
Intensive Care Research, Royal Adelaide Hospital, Adelaide, SA, Australia.
Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.



To explore and map the current literature on the nutritional impact of symptoms reported by adult survivors of critical illness who are eating orally after intensive care unit (ICU) discharge.


Survivors of critical care often experience ICU-acquired weakness and poor functional recovery. It is plausible that nutrition interventions throughout their recovery could improve outcomes for these patients. Although a growing number of studies aim to explore the effect of nutrition delivered in the early phases of critical illness, this is also important post-ICU, particularly in already nutritionally compromised patients presenting with muscle loss and fatigue. Therefore, the development of targeted nutrition interventions will be informed by a comprehensive insight into the physiological, physical or psychological difficulties that critically ill patients experience after ICU discharge which may impede oral intake.


Primary research studies in adult patients 18 years and older, who are in the recovery phase after being critically ill, and eating orally. Studies must report on any symptoms related to the ability to eat, or represent nutrition inadequacy or utilization.


A scoping review will be conducted in accordance with the JBI methodology using a three-step search strategy of MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, AMED, Web of Science, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and JBI Evidence-based Practice Database to obtain primary research studies that meet the inclusion criteria. Duplicates will be removed, and study selection and data extraction will be conducted and cross-checked by two independent reviewers. Data synthesis will involve presenting the results in tabular form.

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