Nutritional Status and Laboratory Parameters among Internal Medicine Inpatients
Background: Malnutrition is a clinical state resulting in prolonged hospital stay, increase in severity of infections and poor wound healing.
Aims: Our aim was to investigate the prevalence and etiologic factors of malnutrition in medical inpatients.
Study Design: A total of 290 consecutively admitted internal medicine patients from February to May 2012 were included. On admission, demographic data, anthropometric measurements, laboratory parameters and nutritional screening test results were recorded.
Methods: Nutritional risk score‑2002 for patients under 65 years old, mini nutritional assessment for older patients and subjective global assessment (SGA) tests performed. Relation of demographic characteristics, laboratory parameters, weight and body mass index (BMI) with nutritional status were evaluated.
Results: Mean age was 61 ± 17 years; 145 patients were male. Among 160 patients < 65 years old, 34 were in malnutrition (21%), 41 (26%) were under risk of malnutrition and 85 (53%) were normal. When they were divided into three groups according to SGA, we found significant difference in hemoglobin, low density lipoprotein (LDL), high density lipoprotein, cholesterol, triglyceride, albumin and protein, weight and BMI. Among 130 patients over 65 years old, 47 patients (37%) were in malnutrition, 41 (31%) were under risk of malnutrition and 42 (32%) were normal. There was significant difference in LDL, cholesterol, albumin, protein, weight and BMI between three groups; each 1 g/dl decrease in serum albumin and age older than 65 years old increased malnutrition risk 5.21 and 1.97 times, respectively.
Conclusion: Malnutrition risk is high among internal medicine inpatients and risk seems to be higher among older patients. Nutritional screening of geriatric patients, close follow‑up and providing earlier health care would contribute rehabilitation of chronic diseases and decrease re‑admissions.
Keywords: Internal Medicine Inpatients, Malnutrition Related Laboratory Parameters, Nutritional Status