At least 1 out of every 3 Nursing Home Residents Suffer Malnutrition
By on May 27, 2010
A leading panel of experts has completed a study of malnutrition in the elderly. According to the experts, there are three general causes of malnutrition: (1) starvation, (2) chronic diseases, and (3) acute diseases.
What is shocking is the study reported that between 35% and 85% of nursing home patients suffer from malnutrition. That is a broad range, but even if the actual rate of malnutrition is closer to 35% it is still shocking to think that at least 1 out of every 3 nursing home patients is malnourished.
Everyone knows how painful hunger can be for a short period, but chronic hunger is not just painful it leads to serious health consequences. Patients who are malnourished are at high risk for developing pressure sores. Their immune systems are weakened so they can not fight off life threatening infections. Examples include urinary tract infections, uro-sepsis, bacteremia, MRSA, and sepsis. Additionally their organs become impaired and eventually they can suffer multi-system organ failure. With some diseases malnutrition may be difficult to avoid, but in many cases it occurs from simple neglect.
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