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Title: Screening in-patients for risk of malnutrition
Authors: Hili, Abigail Marie
Ellul, Pierre
Keywords: Malnutrition -- Malta
Malnutrition -- Diagnosis
Body mass index
Hospital patients -- Malta
Issue Date: 2020-12
Publisher: University of Malta. Medical School
Citation: Hili, A. M., & Ellul, P. (2020). Screening in-patients for risk of malnutrition. Malta Medical Journal, 32(3), 22-30.
Abstract: Introduction: Malnutrition is used to define an imbalance in nutrition and is seen in hospitalized patients. The aim of this study was to assess the risk of malnutrition in patients admitted to the acute medical wards. The ‘Malnutrition universal screening tool’, was used as a gold standard.
Material and Methods: Data was collected from adult patients from acute medical wards. The data collected included the identification number, age, gender, reason for admission, comorbidities, weight, height, unplanned weight loss in the last 3-6 months and the number of days of no nutritional intake. By means of the MUST, the overall risk of malnutrition score was obtained and its management was recorded.
Results: Fifty patients were recruited and 18% were found to be at medium risk of malnutrition while 36% were found to be at high risk. Only 2% of such patients had a dietician referral and/or adherence to the guideline. Despite 58% of patients were found to have a Body Mass Index score of 0, 21% of these had a BMI score of >30kg/m 2 , with 14% of which were admitted secondary to a cardiovascular or respiratory cause.
Discussion: Skills and time are required to diagnose a patient with malnutrition. However, the MUST screening tool, enables this to be done quickly and ppropriately. Moreover, implementation of mandatory nutritional screening on admission will allow an increase in dietician referrals and the correct management of this along with the patient’s illness, leading to a faster recovery, shorter hospital stay and better long term prognosis.
Appears in Collections:MMJ, Volume 32, Issue 3
MMJ, Volume 32, Issue 3
Scholarly Works - FacM&SMed

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