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BMJ. 1994 Apr 9;308(6934):945-8.

Incidence and recognition of malnutrition in hospital.

Author information

1
Department of Clinical Pharmacology, Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, Dundee.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To determine incidence of malnutrition among patients on admission to hospital, to monitor their changes in nutritional status during stay, and to determine awareness of nutrition in different clinical units.

DESIGN:

Prospective study of consecutive admissions.

SETTING:

Acute teaching hospital.

SUBJECTS:

500 patients admitted to hospital: 100 each from general surgery, general medicine, respiratory medicine, orthopaedic surgery, and medicine for the elderly.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Nutritional status of patients on admission and reassessment on discharge, review of case notes for information about nutritional status.

RESULTS:

On admission, 200 of the 500 patients were undernourished (body mass index less than 20) and 34% were overweight (body mass index > 25). The 112 patients reassessed on discharge had mean weight loss of 5.4%, with greatest weight loss in those initially most undernourished. But the 10 patients referred for nutritional support showed mean weight gain of 7.9%. Review of case notes revealed that, of the 200 undernourished patients, only 96 had any nutritional information documented.

CONCLUSION:

Malnutrition remains a largely unrecognised problem in hospital and highlights the need for education on clinical nutrition.

PMID:
8173401
PMCID:
PMC2539799
DOI:
10.1136/bmj.308.6934.945
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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