Medical nutrition therapy and simple interventions can improve intake in patients who eat poorly in hospital

Agarwal, Ekta, Ferguson, Maree, Banks, Merrilyn, Bauer, Judith, Capra, Sandra, & Isenring, Elisabeth (2013) Medical nutrition therapy and simple interventions can improve intake in patients who eat poorly in hospital. Nutrition and Dietetics, 70(s1), p. 4.

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The Australasian Nutrition Care Day Survey (ANCDS) reported two-in-five patients in Australian and New Zealand hospitals consume ≤50% of the offered food. The ANCDS found a significant association between poor food intake and increased in-hospital mortality after controlling for confounders (nutritional status, age, disease type and severity)1. Evidence for the effectiveness of medical nutrition therapy (MNT) in hospital patients eating poorly is lacking. An exploratory study was conducted in respiratory, neurology and orthopaedic wards of an Australian hospital. At baseline, 24-hour food intake (0%, 25%, 50%, 75%, 100% of offered meals) was evaluated for patients hospitalised for ≥2 days and not under dietetic review. Patients consuming ≤50% of offered meals due to nutrition-impact symptoms were referred to ward dietitians for MNT with food intake re-evaluated on day-7. 184 patients were observed over four weeks. Sixty-two patients (34%) consumed ≤50% of the offered meals. Simple interventions (feeding/menu assistance, diet texture modifications) improved intake to ≥75% in 30 patients who did not require further MNT. Of the 32 patients referred for MNT, baseline and day-7 data were available for 20 patients (68±17years, 65% females, BMI: 22±5kg/m2, median energy, protein intake: 2250kJ, 25g respectively). On day-7, 17 participants (85%) demonstrated significantly higher consumption (4300kJ, 53g; p<0.01). Three participants demonstrated no improvement due to ongoing nutrition-impact symptoms. “Percentage food intake” was a quick tool to identify patients in whom simple interventions could enhance intake. MNT was associated with improved dietary intake in hospital patients. Further research is needed to establish a causal relationship.

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ID Code: 63118
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: Special Issue: Abstracts of the Dietitians Association of Australia 30th National Conference, 23–25 May 2013, National Convention Centre, Canberra, Australia
Keywords: medical nutrition therapy, nutrition intervention, food intake, acute care
ISSN: 1747-0080
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > NUTRITION AND DIETETICS (111100) > Nutrition and Dietetics not elsewhere classified (111199)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Dietitians Association of Australia
Deposited On: 03 Oct 2013 22:23
Last Modified: 19 Jul 2017 12:01

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