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[Awareness on nutritional problems at hospitals: which solutions?].

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Revue médicale de la Suisse romande
Publication Date
Volume
123
Issue
6
Pages
401–404
Identifiers
PMID: 15095682
Source
Medline

Abstract

Malnutrition is very frequent in hospitalized patients, particularly if they are elderly and suffer of chronic diseases. Many studies show the correlation between the degree of malnutrition and the frequency of complications, the length of hospital stay and the rate of mortality. However, despite the rising interest of scientists for the role of nutrition in the pathogenesis of the diseases, little attention is devoted to the nutritional status of patients. This article reviews the recent literature regarding hospital malnutrition. At hospital admission, 30 to 40% of patients presents a certain degree of malnutrition. However, only a small percentage is recognized to be malnourished and receive an adequate treatment. The reason for this attitude of medical and paramedical teams seems to be a low priority assigned to nutrition. In addition, they seem to lack the most basic knowledge regarding the metabolic needs of their patients. Another finding, reported by several surveys, is that a large portion of hospital food is not consumed by the patients but is wasted. In fact, meals are not sufficiently-adapted to the taste and the appetite of those for whom they are prepared. This article summarizes the recommendation of the Europe Council regarding the nutritional evaluation and treatment of patients.

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