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Nutritional support for patients with intellectual disability and nutrition/dysphagia disorders in community care.

Authors
  • Kennedy, M
  • McCombie, L
  • Dawes, P
  • McConnell, K N
  • Dunnigan, M G
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of intellectual disability research : JIDR
Publication Date
Oct 01, 1997
Volume
41 ( Pt 5)
Pages
430–436
Identifiers
PMID: 9373824
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Patients with intellectual disability and neurological handicaps associated with swallowing difficulties are vulnerable to dehydration and undernutrition. Some patients are severely undernourished, a condition which is usually associated with recurrent food aspiration and respiratory infections. Underweight patients are usually provided with adequate dietary protein by carers: their low energy intakes reflect inadequate intakes of fat and carbohydrate. Many patients gain weight following the provision of easily assimilated energy-dense fat- and sugar-containing foods. Where these measures fail, the provision of a percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) tube may be life-saving. Optimal supervision of patients with severe nutrition/dysphagia problems requires a support network linking carers at home or in community care facilities with the primary health care team and the local district general hospital.

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